This paper provides a theoretical and operational overview of a new integrated urban sustainability assessment framework named as Local area Envisioning and Sustainability Scoring system (LESS). LESS allows the monitoring, mapping and measurement of indicators from four fields of relevance to local government areas: environment, socio-economic, infrastructure and governance. The assessment of chosen indicators is conducted by taking into account the priorities and aspirations of a local government. The framework is used to create a unifiedweighted index (on a scale of 0 to 10) to indicate the state of “health” of each field, in addition to a combined ranking taking into account all four fields. The framework is based on DriversPressure-State-Impact-Response (DPSIR) concept. The basic premise behind this concept is that environmental changes are brought about by drivers, and caused by pressures. These changes impact communities as they interact with the demographic, social and economic factors that influence human well-being. In turn, communities respond with measures for mitigating and adapting to environmental changes. LESS is aimed to be a simple, flexible and customisable assessment framework.
The State of Australian Cities (SOAC) national conferences have been held biennially since 2003 to support interdisciplinary policy-related urban research.
This paper was presented at SOAC 4 held in Perth from 24 to 27 November 2009.
SOAC 4 was hosted by the University of Western Australia, Curtin University, Edith Cowan University and Murdoch University and held at The University of Western of Australia’s Crawley campus.SOAC 4 was a collaborative venture between colleagues from the planning, geography and related disciplines across the four public universities.
The meta-theme of this conference - city growth, sustainability, vitality and vulnerability – sought to capture the dynamic and complex nature and contexts in which Australian cities find themselves in the early 21st century.
The last decade or so has seen Australian cities and many of their residents benefit from significant economic prosperity. With this economic prosperity, largely on the back of a resources boom, Australian cities and resources and mineral-rich regions, particularly in Queensland and in WA, have been subjected to profound demographic, social, economic, environmental and political changes. In the wake of the so-called ‘global financial crisis’ we have witnessed the rise of what might be called ‘neo-Keynesianism’ as various liberal democratic nations have pumped billions of dollars into their national economies via ‘bail outs’ or a stimulus package’ in an effort to stave off economic recession. The economic prosperity and more recent uncertainty that has been experienced in the last decade provides a fascinating and dare we say it a timely backdrop to critically reflect on the condition of urban Australia.
All published papers have been subject to a peer reviewing process.
State of Australian Cities Research Network and the author/s
Research showed that one-quarter of Sydney respondents were open to consolidating property for sale with neighbours. However, consolidated lot sales are not part of the business model of most real estate agencies, local government, or property developers. It’s an area where the...Read more
Industry misconceptions around high cost and poor market interest in energy efficient homes continue to obstruct the mass adoption of low carbon housing. Josh’s House demonstrates that low carbon housing is accessible and cost effective. The Star Performers series showcases how...Read more
Rapid global urbanization and the increase of the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect make urban cooling a necessity as well as an opportunity to increase the liveability and amenity of cities. This review is a scoping study of the relevant worldwide UHI mitigation/adaptation...Read more
Urban fringe residential estates continue to dominate the residential development sector in Australia. Several practice based sustainability assessment tools have recently been developed which acknowledge the impacts of such developments and attempt to improve outcomes.
This paper draws from research undertaken by the authors for the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) that scoped the processes and inputs needed for establishing a new redevelopment model in Australia’s middle suburbs, with a particular focus on Melbourne (Newton et al 2011).
Due to the unsustainable nature of urban sprawl, Australian metropolitan strategies have increasing been pushing for increased levels of infill: the redevelopment of existing urban (typically residential) land. However, the current infill models of Brownfield and lot-by-lot redevelopment are largely incapable of generating the volume or range of future housing needs. This issue has led to increased attention being placed on greyfield redevelopment, and in particular regeneration precincts, as a way to encourage more efficient reuse of land.
The papers presented at the 2015 State of Australian Cities National Conference (SOAC 7) were organised into seven broad themes but all shared, to varying degrees, a common focus on the ways in which high quality academic research can be used in the development and implementation of policy.