Professor Ralph Horne

Ralph Horne is the Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor, Research and Innovation for the College of Design and Social Context at RMIT University, supporting research performance and providing strategic leadership. He is also Director of the Cities Programme, the urban arm of the United Nations Global Compact, and supervises and conducts research projects in urban and social change.

Ralph Horne has research expertise in urban social and policy change for sustainable design and development. He has extensive experience in environmental techniques and sustainability appraisal and has a specific research interest in low carbon urban transitions. He combines research leadership and participation in projects concerning the environmental, social and policy context of production and consumption in the urban environment.

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Related Content


Buildings and precincts adapted for future climate change

User perspectives in purpose built low energy housing

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Infill Developments: Housing Outcomes Metrics and Evaluation (Project Home)

The project links housing outcomes to metrics and evaluation of housing design in the rapidly growing infill multi-residential sector.

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EPA approaches to behaviour change

In partnership with BehaviourWorks at Monash University, Beyond Behaviour Change researchers conducted interviews and site visits with EPA field officers.

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Assessing resilient urban systems to support long term adaptation to climate change

The Resilient Urban Systems project aimed to assess the capacity of community-level urban energy and water systems to support long term adaptation to climate change.

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Towards Carbon Neutral Communities: Making the Transition

This project focused on the role of behaviour change initiatives and other non-technical interventions in transitioning towards carbon neutrality.

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Lifetime Affordable and Tenable City Housing

Research into homebuyer decision making and lived experience of households.

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News & Blog

Sharing economy sounds caring, but let’s put it to the ethical city test

More than ever, cities face multiple crises posing paradoxical opportunities. Key challenges for cities in the urban century are climate change, inequality and governance.

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What can the New Urban Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals do for cities?

Our cities are increasingly beset by a lack of affordable housing, inequality, lagging infrastructure – the list goes on.

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Fuzzy households in an era of urban growth

Housing affordability stress is acute for both low-income households and a growing number of middle-income households, and with housing increasingly commodified and financialised, and as affordability reaches crisis levels, owner-occupation models are also being challenged.

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Thinking about a sustainable retrofit? Here are three things to consider

Sitting at home in the summer heat, your mind may start to wander to that fancy new air conditioner. But when it comes to making your house comfortable and sustainable, prevention is better than cure.

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RMIT shapes UN’s New Urban Agenda with Massive Open Online Course

RMIT University today launches a first-of-its-kind Ethical Cities open online course at the UN’s global cities summit to connect people around the world with ethical concept and practice for cities.

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Sustainable housing’s expensive, right? Not when you look at the whole equation

Sustainable housing can also have important benefits for some of the most vulnerable members of our community, as the report released this week shows.

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New book explores the rise of green spirited citizenship

A new book edited and authored by RMIT urban experts examines the rise of the “sustainability citizens” movement and how it’s inspiring a new perception of citizenship for the better.

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Our cities will stop working without a decent national housing policy

We have to move the housing conversation beyond a game of political football about negative-gearing winners and losers. Australia needs a bipartisan, long-term, housing policy.

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Locking in liveability: The city we need is the city that cares

How can we lock liveability into our cities in coming decades? That is one of the questions posed for this week’s Australian Urban Thinkers Campus at RMIT University.

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RMIT wins $1.8million in ARC linkage funding

RMIT University has been awarded more than $1.8million in Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Project Grants.

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Towards socially integrated housing in Chile: Assessing conviviality through two key housing projects

B. Maturana Cossio, Professor Ralph Horne

This paper argues that materially interspersing different socioeconomic groups within housing developments is insufficient on its own to achieve the objectives of social integration espoused in the national urban policy.

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Horsham Catalyst Research and Evaluation Final Report

This study led by RMIT's Centre for Urban Research and funded by the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services, investigates the economic, social and environmental performance of low-carbon houses in comparison with 'standard' residences in Horsham, Victoria.

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The ethical city: A rationale for an urgent new urban agenda

This article draws on examples of existing practices in cities that reflect a principled and ethical approach to leadership, governance, planning, economic development, sustainability and citizen engagement.

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International perspectives: Low carbon urban Australia in a time of transition

Horne, R and Fudge, C 2014, 'International perspectives: low carbon urban Australia in a time of transition' in Chris Miller and Lionel Orchard (ed.) Australian public policy: Progressive ideas in the neoliberal ascendency, Policy Press, Bristol, United Kingdom, pp. 279-295.

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Policing and polluting: The role of practices in contemporary urban environmental pollution governance

This paper focuses on the regulator field officers and business duty holders of environmental compliance, who have direct contact in the processes and administration of regulation.

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Dwelling performance and adaptive summer comfort in low-income Australian households

This paper aims to address these gaps, reporting on a study combining in-home temperature monitoring and qualitative interviews with householders.

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Housing, households and climate change adaptation in the town camps of Alice Springs

Horne, R and Martel, A 2015, 'Housing, households and climate change adaptation in the town camps of Alice Springs' in Jean P. Palutikof, Sarah L. Boulter, Jon Barnett, David Rissik (ed.) Applied Studies in Climate Adaptation, Wiley, Oxford, United Kingdom, pp. 289-296.

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Low carbon urban transitioning: From local experimentation to urban transformation?

Moloney, S and Horne, R 2015, 'Low carbon urban transitioning: From local experimentation to urban transformation?', Sustainability (Switzerland), vol. 7, no. 3, pp. 2437-2453.

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Low carbon, water-efficient house retrofits: an emergent niche?

Horne, R, Maller, C and Dalton, T 2014, 'Low-carbon, water-efficient house renovations: an emergent niche?', Building Research and Information, vol. 42, no. 4, pp. 539-548.

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Household adaptation in aboriginal public housing: A social practice approach

Martel, A and Horne, R 2013, 'Household adaptation in Aboriginal public housing: a social practice approach', in A/Prof Steven Rowley, Dr Rachel Ong, Dr Sanna Markkanen (ed.) 7th Australasian Housing Researchers Conference: Refereed Proceedings, Perth, Australia, 6 - 8 February 2013, pp. 1-10.

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