Recent Projects

A Spatial Justice Framework (2024) Focus: Public Space | Social Inclusion

Publication: Journal of Urbanism: International Research on Placemaking and Sustainability. Project: Vital Communities (City of Greater Geelong + Deakin University). Title: “Public Space in the Shadow of COVID-19: Placemaking for Spatial Justice in Geelong’s ‘Disadvantaged’ Neighbourhoods.” Abstract: Drawing on empirical data from a regional Australian city, this paper investigates how public space is implicated in locational disadvantage, how COVID-19 is impacting inequality, and how placemaking can best serve “disadvantaged” communities. To explore the role of public space during COVID-19, we assessed open space in three “disadvantaged” Geelong suburbs, interviewed local community workers, and analysed resident input to a local placemaking project. Along with major shortfalls in local public spaces, we found that COVID-19 heightened existing inequalities, that public space deficits compounded pandemic stressors, and that community-driven placemaking presents a remedy for these shortfalls. Considering how placemaking can reinforce or challenge existing inequalities, we develop a holistic Framework clarifying the dynamic interplay of five key factors: locational disadvantage, public space, place stigma, place attachment, and placemaking. Our Framework seeks to support more “spatially just” placemaking, illuminating how practitioners and policymakers might harness these dynamics to promote social goods and minimise social harms. With inequality on the rise, we argue that advancing the spatial aspects of justice will strengthen placemaking’s potential to mitigate the locational aspects of disadvantage.

BIG THINKERS ~ Public Education
Client: Launch Housing (2023-2024)

Brief: Conceive, commission, write, and edit content for “Big Thinkers“, a series of 20 articles exploring homelessness from multiple perspectives. Goal: Public education and community engagement project to combat stigma, promote understanding, drive positive change, and showcase innovative and evidence-based solutions to homelessness; foster engagement with the Melbourne Zero campaign to end rough sleeping; build community support for the goal of ending homelessness. Responsibilities: Manage content creation, define story topics and angles, conduct research, recruit and brief guest authors, manage relationships with contributors, edit all incoming copy, interview people with lived experience of homelessness, interview Australian and international experts, write up interview findings in conversational format. Duration: 10 months.

Guest-authored articles (commissioning editor): > Aleem Ali, CEO, Welcoming Australia > Emma Dawson, CEO, Per Capita > Jane Gilmore, author and journalist > Peter Mares, writer and researcher > Dr Evie Kendal, bioethicist, Swinburne University > Jonathan O’Brien, YIMBY Melbourne Pending stories: * Rachel Kurzyp, author and marketing consultant * Jennifer Beveridge, CEO, Tenants Victoria * Claire G. Coleman, author.

Conversation articles (interviewer and writer): > Patrick ‘Spike’ Chiappalone, co-founder, Homeless Persons Union > Juha Kaakinen, Professor, Tampere University, Finland > Debi Rice, guest speaker and educator, Big Issue Classroom > Dr Catherine Robinson, Associate Professor, University of Tasmania > Yvonne Hong, CEO, Pets of the Homeless > Naomi Ejigu, Lennox Lee, Mae White, legends, Plausible Deniability > Dr Jess Heerde, Associate Professor, University of Melbourne Pending interviews: * Dr Jiaying Zhao, Associate Professor, University of British Columbia * Charmaine Tracey, artist * David Pearson, CEO, Australian Alliance to End Homelessness * Jordan van den Berg, Shit Rentals of Australia * Jody Letts, advocate and former soldier.

Weathering the Storm ~ Research Report
Client: Incolink (2023)

Brief: Conceive and deliver in-depth research report investigating how the Victorian building and construction industry dealt with the Covid-19 pandemic. Goal: Complete an objective and impartial assessment of the industry’s responses to the pandemic, including onsite mitigation measures, workforce education, strategic communications, industry vaccination and testing programs, alliance-building and collaborations, and protocols to protect workers’ health and safety. Document key challenges, success factors, and lessons learned; compile a detailed narrative timeline of events over a two-year period; make recommendations for action. Responsibilities: Project management, research design, data collection and analysis, site visits, stakeholder interviews (union heads, employer association CEOs, government advisors, senior industry figures), integrate quantitative analysis (by ACIL Allen), author 80-page report. Duration: 7 months.

Reconciliation Action Plan ~ Strategy
Client: Master Builders Victoria (2021-2022)

Brief: Develop and deliver MBV’s first Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), in close collaboration with Aboriginal consultancy Kaptify (Director: Adam Magennis). Responsibilities: Consult with key First Nations organisations and people, under Adam’s guidance; manage project timelines, set targets, advise on actions and deliverables; facilitate input from CEO, senior leadership, and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee; liaise with Reconciliation Australia; explore partnership opportunities; develop outline for Industry Education Initiative (best-practice cultural heritage management); write and submit final Reconciliation Action Plan. Duration: 8 months.

Vital Communities ~ Research Report
Client: City of Greater Geelong (2020-2021)

Brief: Co-deliver research project for local government, in collaboration with research team from Deakin University’s HOME Research Hub. Responsibilities: External member of research team, contributing to research design, interviews, data analysis, write-up, and co-authoring of academic articles. Pitch project to client, facilitate workshop to present key findings, edit and format 300-word final report. (Co-authors: Professor Richard Tucker, Professor Louise Johnson, Dr Fiona Andrews, Dr Danielle Hitch, Dr Jian Liang, Associate Professor Lukar Thornton). Duration: 5 months.

We Are Here ~ Non-Fiction Book
Storytelling, community, advocacy (2019)

We Are Here: Stories of Home, Place and Belonging (Affirm Press). Role: Project lead. Responsibilities: Produce world-first collection of true stories by people who have experienced homelessness. Conceive, design, and manage project: secure partnerships and funding, gain ethics clearance (National Health and Medical Research Council), conduct immersive research, deliver writing workshops, source and brief contributors, manage project budget, edit all text, select images for book, supervise two post-graduate interns, arrange media appearances, host public events (Wheeler Centre, Docklands Library, Word for Word National Nonfiction Festival).
Project partners: Affirm Press, Launch Housing, Streetsmart, Council to Homeless Persons, Roomers Magazine, The Big Issue Australia, City of Melbourne, Deakin University. Duration: 18 months. Project website > We Are Here

More soon! Website under construction…