How do we ensure accessibility, equality and just distribution of services and benefits for everyone in cities in the era of transformations?
Transitions in cities manifest through deep and radical changes in ways of living, organising, doing and ways of acquiring knowledge, planning and changing routines and institutions and urban infrastructures’ use and make up. Australian cities are also in transition, growing and developing into diverse places to live and work. It becomes challenging how to balance not only social needs and expectations across diverse demographic groups but also across a diverse population in terms of culture, ethnicity and age.
In this context, ensuring that cities are offering accessibility to services, infrastructures, amenities, work and welfare to all in a just way is a sustainability challenge that requires not only critical examination and exploration but also a new scientific paradigm that co-creates knowledge with citizens, cities and industry to feasible and knowledge-based planning solutions.
Socio-economic drivers like biotechnology, automation, digital fabrication and digitalization of government services, and artificial intelligence together with the pressing decarbonization of the economy create a new landscape of disruption and opportunities. Decarbonisation, population growth and renewal of urban infrastructures requires actionable knowledge to aid economic innovation, adapt service provision, and reform or deconstruct barriers to participation, recognition and equitability of diverse communities and cultures.