Regional Studies Association Inaugural Australasian Conference 2015

Posted on: March 13th, 2015 by SamCB

Rethinking the Region & Regionalism in Australasia: Challenges & Opportunities for the 21st Century

Date and location

  •  31st August, 2015 – 2nd September, 2015
  •  RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia

Conference details


Cities and regions in Australia and New Zealand have experienced more than 30 years of social and demographic dynamism as a consequence of micro economic reform, greater engagement with the global networks of production, new patterns of migration, rising national prosperity and the shift towards a service based economy.   In many respects, the antipodean nations have led the world in the process of economic liberalisation, stripping away regulations to move from being some of the most protected economies in the OECD in the 1960s to amongst the most open economies in the 21st Century. For some regions, cities and towns change has resulted in growth, while for others the last three decades have been marked by fluctuating fortunes and even decline. Public sector reform at the national, provincial/state and local levels have contributed to these processes of change, calling into question both previous paradigms and policy settings.  These changes have had immense impacts for academics and other researchers involved in the study of regions, resulting in the development of new theoretical positions and the need to engage with a much broader set of intellectual arguments.  This, the first Regional Studies Association, event in Australasia seeks to contribute to the growth in academic dialogue at the local and global scales.

Rethinking the Region and Regionalism in Australasia seeks contributions from researchers, policy makers and practitioners working in all areas of regional analysis, especially those focussed on Australasia. Themes of interest to the conference include:

  • Regions at the end of the mining boom;
  • Governance and the regions;
  • The institutional determinants of growth and development;
  • Population processes in the regions;
  • First nations – Maori and Indigenous Australians – and the regions;
  • Housing, social services and infrastructure;
  • Measuring wellbeing, happiness and progress at the regional scale;
  • Ecological Sustainability;
  • Climate Change and the Future of Regional Systems;
  • Smart Specialisation;
  • Regions and the Global Financial Crisis;
  • City Regions in Australasia and other  parts of the globe; and,
  • Achieving local economic growth.

One aspect of these themes that could be considered and will be welcomed is the ‘cultural’ dimension of change, as reflected in emerging approaches to addressing change by local governments across the world.

Submission of papers

Please submit proposals for papers in the form of a 400-500 word abstract (text only, no pictures, graphs or tables) through the Regional Studies Association online portal by 11th May 2015. Registration and abstract submission is open now!

Please note that this conference has limited places; successful candidates will be notified within two weeks of the closing date. Proposals will be considered by the Conference Programming Committee against the criteria of originality, interest and subject balance.

Conference Fees

Regular Conference Fee *Student and **Early Career Conference Fee
£350.00 ($690) £285.00 ($563.00)

* Full time student
** Early career is defined as 5 years post PhD

Please note that there are only a limited number of student and early career places for this event. Reduced option will be removed once limit is reached, so early booking is advised. 

Click here to register

Conference organisers

Conference organisation
Professor Andrew Beer, the University of Adelaide, Australia
Professor Peter Fairbrother, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia

RSA Organiser:
Please contact Elizabeth Mitchell at for further details and questions regarding abstract submission.

5th International Disaster and Risk Conference

Posted on: May 27th, 2014 by melissa

24–28 August 2014, Davos, Switzerland

The International Disaster and Risk Conference IDRC Davos 2014 is organised by Global Risk Forum (GRF) Davos in close cooperation with and under the patronage of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR). IDRC Davos 2014 attempts to find solutions to today’s challenges by managing risks, reducing disasters and adapting to climate change. Focussing on a multi-sectors, multi-stakeholders  and multi-disciplines approach IDRC helps to build stronger ties with adequate public-private partnership models among risk management communities and sectors, enabling a move towards a truly integrative way of thinking about disasters and risks. The outcomes aim to influence the post 2015 agenda such as the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (HFA2), the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) or the replacement of the UNFCCC Kyoto Protocol (post Kyoto).



IDRC Davos 2014 will cover different risk areas, crosscutting themes and instruments. The outcomes aim to support science & technology recommendations for the HFA2, enhance the understanding of integrative risk management, suggest economic opportunities and private sector investments and provide governance recommendations.

The following matrix is an overview of selected risk areas, important cross-cutting themes and instruments for applicable solutions:




IDRC Davos 2014 will be held at the Congress Centre in Davos, Switzerland. Set in the breathtaking mountain landscape of the Grisons Alps and located within easy reach of accommodation, shops and restaurants, the expanded Davos Congress Centre combines many years of tradition with the most modern infrastructure. As the leading conference destination of the Alps, Davos hosts several world known conferences, including the International Disaster and Risk Conference IDRC Davos, the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum WEF, the AO courses and many more…

Altogether about 12’000m2 for up to 5000 participants and 34 rooms, including a plenary hall for an audience of 2000 participants are available.

For further information on the Davos Congress Centre please CLICK HERE


Conference Patrons, Organisers and Sponsors

The 5th International Disaster and Risk Conference is under the patronage of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITR). IDRC Davos 2014 has been organised by United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) and Global Risk Forum (GRF) Davos. 

The Global Cities Research Institute is an Endorsing Sponsor of IDRC Davos 2014.



For more information please visit the IDRC Davos 2014Conference Website:


Oceanic Conference on International Studies 2014

Posted on: November 13th, 2013 by melissa



9–11 July 2014, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia

The sixth OCIS builds on previous successful conferences held at the Australian National University (2004), the University of Melbourne (2006), the University of Queensland (2008), the University of Auckland (2010), and the University of Sydney (2012), and brings Oceania’s largest conference on International Studies to Melbourne. The purpose of OCIS is to showcase the variety of world-class research conducted in the region and build scholarly networks and relationships. Scholars from further afield are welcome.

OCIS is a general conference that will address a wide range of themes including:

• Asia Pacific Issues
• Gender and Feminism
• Global Governance, International Law and International Society
• International History, Diplomacy and Foreign Policy
• International Political Economy
• International Relations Theory and Methods
• International Security
• Justice and Rights, Normative Theory and International Ethics
• North-South Relations
• Peace and Conflict
• Post-colonialism and Indigenous Rights
• Regions and Regionalism

Papers and panels are not limited to the themes identified here. Participants are invited to submit panel or paper proposals presenting original research on any topic under the International Studies umbrella.


Call for Papers

The organising committee invites both panel and individual paper proposals.  Proposals may cover any topic within the fields of international relations and global politics, broadly defined.

Panel proposals must include a panel title, an overview paragraph describing the topic and logic of the panel, an abstract of no more than 200 words for each contributing paper, biographical details on each of the participants, and a statement that all proposed presenters have agreed to participate. Proposals for panels should ideally include three paper presenters, and no more than four, and no discussants. Please find the submission guidelines for panel proposals here.

Proposals from individuals (or co-authors) should include only the title, an abstract of no more than 200 words, and the presenter’s biographical details. Full contact details must be included with all proposals. Please find the submission guidelines for individual abstracts here.



The conference will be held in the Old Arts building on the University of Melbourne’s main Parkville campus, which is situated next door to the vibrant Lygon street restaurant precinct and just a few minutes from the bustling city of Melbourne.


Hosts and Sponsors

The conference is hosted by the School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Melbourne and supported by the Australian Institute of International Affairs, Deakin University, La Trobe University, Monash University, Global Cities Research Institute (RMIT University) and Swinburne University. The conference organising committee includes representatives from all of our supporters and thought leaders in the field of International Studies.



For more information please visit the OCIS2014 Conference Website:

People and the Planet 2013: Transforming the Future

Posted on: October 14th, 2012 by stevenha

2–4 July 2013, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.

We are living through a period in human history when life on this planet is in danger of becoming unsustainable for many of its species—including us. More than a century ago, when Charles Dickens wrote the Tale of Two Cities, his words told of a deep ambivalence: ‘it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us’. The passage spoke of a new world in which the people of Paris and London had choices to make about their future. Now, variations on those words have become the backdrop to a growing sense that it is has become all too complicated.

This conference responds to that challenge in a number of ways. Firstly, instead of treating sustainability as a narrow ecological question framed by business as usual, it addresses the human condition across the integrated domains of economics, ecology, politics and culture. Secondly, the conference brings together the very different constituencies of academia, civil society, urban governance and business. It asks: What does it mean to be responsible for the future of our planet? How can we best work collaboratively across those different constituencies to address basic issues of sustainability? Thirdly, the conference asks: ‘What is to be done?’ This is not to reduce the future to technical solutions, but rather to debate how are we going to act now to work towards an imagined future.


Keynote Speakers

In addition to 100 academic presentations People and the Planet 2013 will feature an extraordinary range of leading thinkers from the academic, public and NGO sectors, including:

  • Joyati Das – Global Head, Centre of Expertise for Urban Programming, World Vision
  • Robyn Eckersley – Author of the Green State, leading environmentalist and Professor of Political Science, The University of Melbourne
  • Jerry Harris – National Secretary of the Global Studies Association of North America, and founding member of the Network for the Critical Study of Global Capitalism
  • Eric Herring – Deputy Director of the Global Insecurities Centre at the University of Bristol
  • Paul James - Director of RMIT University’s Global Cities Research Institute and the UN Global Compact Cities Programme
  • Peter Mandaville – Director, Ali Vural Ak Center for Global Islamic Studies and advisor to former US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton
  • Robert Manne – Leading Australian public intellectual, and Convenor of the Society & Ideas Program
  • Kate Roffey – Chief Executive Officer of the Committee for Melbourne
  • Matthew Tukaki - Chief Executive Officer of the Sustain Group and Australia’s Representative to the United Nations Global Compact
  • Deborah Bird Rose – Author of prize-winning books, including the Dingo Makes Us Human and Professor for Social Inclusion, Macquarie University

For more information on all keynote speakers please visit the Keynote speaker page.


Conference Themes

Reflecting the diversity of challenges that now confront us, People and the Planet 2013 will see presentations from nine interconnecting research themes:

  • Urban Sustainability
  • Cultural Sustainability
  • Climate Change Adaptation
  • Community Sustainability
  • Globalization and Culture
  • Human Security and Disasters
  • Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Sustainable Urban and Regional Futures
  • Global Ecologies and Culture


The Structure of the Conference

This is a three-day refereed academic conference which includes:

  • Keynote plenary sessions at the opening and closing of the conference.
  • Parallel sessions will be organized into themes during the day.
  • The first two days start at 9.00am and conclude at 6.00pm, the third day starts at 9.00am and concludes at 4.30pm.
  • A cocktail event will be held in the early evening of Day 1, Tuesday 2nd July from 6.00–7.00pm


A Globally Connected Conference

The People and the Planet 2013 conference is part of a larger process of rethinking sustainability across the world. The conference is co-organized by the UN Global Compact Cities Programme, and one of the tasks will be to debate and build upon the recommendations of the Cities Track of the UN Global Compact Rio +20 Corporate Sustainability Forum that led into the Rio+20 Earth Summit in Brazil in 2012. More than a one-off event, this conference contributes to a series of ongoing meetings, forums and panels.


Publications Coming out of the Conference


  • Fully refereed, double-blind process
  • Selected essays from Proceedings to be published in the Global Cities Annual Review
  • Two proposed anthologies submitted to Routledge (Urban Futures and Eco-Criticism)
  • Special issues proposed for journals (Local-Global, Arena Journal, and Communications, Politics & Culture)



RMIT University (Storey Hall)
342 Swanston Street
Melbourne  Victoria  3000



  • UN Global Compact Cities Programme
  • UN-Habitat World Urban Campaign
  • Cultural Development Network
  • Global Reconciliation
  • World Vision Australia and many more…

For further information and to view all of our sponsors click here



enquiries about People and the Planet can directed to our dedicated email account


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You can also join and follow the conference via Facebook and Twitter. Simply click on the icons below:


Towards a Research Partnership in Disaster Management and Resilience Symposium

Posted on: October 10th, 2012 by melissa

29 November 2012, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.

RMIT and the University of Salford Centre for Disaster Resilience is hosting this one-day symposium

International research linkages are increasingly becoming important in securing competitive grants and demonstrating global impact. This one-day research symposium will enable the sharing of disaster and resilience research undertaken by RMIT University and the University of Salford’s Centre for Disaster Resilience and is an opportunity to develop a strong research partnership between our institutions. It is possible that papers from the symposium could be revised as a special issue of International Journal for Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment.

Symposium themes

Themes of mutual research interest at RMIT and the Salford Centre for Disaster Resilience Centre include:

  • Capacity building for mitigation and reconstruction
  • Project management for post disaster reconstruction
  • Community engagement to build disaster resilience
  • Resilience and adaptive capacity
  • Disaster risk reduction
  • Risk management and sustainability
  • Settlement infrastructure and shelter
  • Stakeholder management
  • Post disaster waste management
  • Extreme weather events and coping strategies
  • Community engagement and participation in reconstruction
  • Role of women in mitigating and managing disasters
  • Protection and empowerment of women and other vulnerable groups
  • Social impact of reconstruction
  • Post-disaster livelihood development
  • Development and construction
  • Knowledge management and integration
  • Public policy, governance & procurement
  • Business continuity analysis and planning

Symposium supporters

  • SURF Research Program, Global Cities Research Institute
  • University of Salford Centre for Disaster Resilience
  • EU Centre at RMIT
  • RMIT Disaster Research Network
  • Communication, Politics and Culture Research Cluster

Deadline call for papers: 31 October 2012

Please submit your name and the title and abstract of a paper may wish to present to:

  • Ms Gayle Seddon, Manager, SURF Research Program – Email:
  • Professor John Fien, Professor of Sustainability – Email:

Papers with oral presentations to be 20 minutes followed by 10 minutes discussion.

City Maintenance

Posted on: October 9th, 2012 by melissa

17-18 October 2012, Goodwood Park Hotel, Singapore.

City maintenance is usually taken for granted as a background feature of cities, done in the quiet of night as part of engineer’s or waste collector’s secret business. Maintenance, done well, should however, be seen as part of the central and long-term planning of a city. It is crucial for the sustainability, vibrance, and liveability of good cities.

With these concerns to the fore, the Global Compact Cities Programme and the Global Cities Research Institute, RMIT, are sponsoring a major conference in Singapore.  This event will be chaired by Paul James, Director of the Global Cities Research Institute.

Speakers include:

  • Councillor Stuart Drummond, Lord Mayor, Hartlepool Borough Council, United Kingdom
  • Dato’ Ir Lim Chow Hock, Director, Hydrology and Water Resources Division, Department of Irrigation and Drainage, Ministry of Natural Resources, Malaysia
  • Paul James, Director, United Nations Global Compact, Cities Programme and Director, Global Cities Research Institute, RMIT, Australia
  • Christina Leifman, Head of Section/Strategic Planning, City Planning Administration of Stockholm, Sweden
  • Rob Shields, Senior Advisor Community Safety, Auckland Council, New Zealand
  • Timothy Curtis, Head of Culture Unit, UNESCO Bangkok, Thailand
  • William Lau Hui Lay, President, Singapore Institute of Planners
  • Bill Jones, ASEAN Director, Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), Singapore
  • Dato’ Dr Ismail B Mohamed Taib, Managing Director & Chairman, Jambatan Kedua Malaysia (Penang II Bridge), Malaysia
  • Ir Dorai Narayana, Head – Asset Management & Planning Services, Indah Water Konsortium, Malaysia
  • Vijayakumar Raman, Landscaping Architect, DBKL ( Dewan Bandaraya Kuala Lumpur), Malaysia
  • Prof Madya Ir Adnan Bin Zulkiple, Advisor, Highway and Transportation Engineering Technical Division, IEM, Malaysia
  • Dr Ong Ghim Ping Raymond, Department of Civil Engineering, National University of Singapore, Honorary Secretary (2011-present), Pavement Engineering Society, Singapore
  • Damian Tang, President, Singapore Institute of Landscape Architects
  • Martin Lim, Executive Director & Principal Consultant, Metropolitan Green Design and Technology, Singapore
  • Ronald Van Triest, Managing Director, Lemnis Lighting Asia, Singapore

More information:

Click here to download a pdf document for more information on the conference including session details.

Wellbeing not Winning: Sport and Men’s Health in Aboriginal Communities

Posted on: October 2nd, 2012 by melissa

2 October 2012, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.

We are convening this one-day research and practice symposium to bring together speakers with firsthand experience of issues associated with men’s health in the context of sport. Through sharing our experiences, we aim to gain fresh insights into meaningful ways in which young Aboriginal men can engage in sporting activities whilst fulfilling family and community obligations and retaining a connection to Country.

The day will consist of a series of short presentations of life experiences, practical projects and research insights to raise current issues and opportunities for young Aboriginal men playing sport today in Australia. Speakers include organizers of sporting events and leagues, practitioners who support people through their life-journeys, and academic researchers.

Following the presentations, a panel session will discuss opportunities to take practical steps towards assisting Aboriginal men in balancing their sporting talents and ambitions with their personal health and wellbeing and that of their families, communities and Country. We therefore aim to bring to the fore key issues to be addressed and commitment to the development of a collaborative research agenda that will engage communities, practitioners, sporting organizations, policy-makers and academics.

If you have further enquiries please contact Tim Butcher via email, or call 03 9925 5142.

Event Details
Tuesday, 2 October 2012

RMIT City Campus
Emily McPherson Building (13)
Level 3, Room 7
Cnr of Russell and Victoria Streets
Melbourne  Vic  3000

RSVP to by Tuesday, 25 September 2012.


Football in the Northern Territory. Photograph by Matty Day


Click on this link for more information on the Global Indigeneity and Reconciliation Program.


RMIT acknowledges the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nations as the traditional owners of the land on which the University stands, and respectfully recognises Elders past and present.

Global Studies Consortium 2012

Posted on: June 14th, 2012 by melissa

14-17 June 2012, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia.

Organizers: RMIT University

Sponsors: Global Cities Research Institute (Day 1)

The Global Studies Consortium Annual Meeting brings together scholars working in the broad field of Global Studies.  In addition to showcasing research at the Global Cities Institute, the gathering opens opportunities for RMIT academics and international scholars to discuss research and teaching collaborations in a collegial and informal setting.  The whole program is intended to advance the consolidation of Global Studies as a recognized academic discipline and to strengthen RMIT’s global credentials.

For more information visit the website.



Human Security and Natural Disasters Conference

Posted on: February 20th, 2012 by melissa

20-22 February 2012, Tokyo, Japan.

Organizers: Waseda University, United Nations University, Global Cities Research Institute, RMIT

Sponsors: The Japan Foundation and the United Nations Global Compact Cities Programme

Tokyo, Japan 2009. © Tommaso Durante, The Visual Archive Project of The Global Imaginary

Environmental security was identified as a core component of human security, as outlined in UNDP’s 1994 report. Nevertheless, human security debates and policies have tended to focus more on human-made disasters, such as armed conflicts and human rights abuses. As recent catastrophes like the earthquakes in Haiti and Japan have clearly shown, however, the actual threats that people struggle with following a natural disaster are similar to those of a human-made crisis such as armed conflict: fear (aftershocks and deteriorating social order) and want (lack of food, water and shelter). The human security dimension of such events is also reflected in the interdependent nature of the threat as natural disasters and pre-existing vulnerabilities, such as poverty and/or conflict, which can interact in a mutually reinforcing and damaging manner. While the environmental security component of human security has begun to be considered in relation to climate change, there is relatively little work that focuses on natural disasters. It this context the conference addresses how a human security framework can help us understand and respond to these catastrophes such as the 11 March earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, the 2009 ‘Black Saturday’ bushfires in Australia and the 2010 Haiti earthquake.


  • Yoichi Mine, Doshisha University, Japan, ‘Multiple Interfaces of Human Security’.
  • Akiko Fukushima, Aoyama Gakuin University, Japan, ‘Natural Disasters: Addressing Vulnerability, Coping Capacity and Impact Reduction through Human Security’.
  • Paul James, Global Cities Research Institute, RMIT, Australia, ‘Responding to Crises in Extenso: Considering all the Domains of the Human Condition’.
  • Robin Cameron, Global Cities Research Institute, RMIT, Australia, ‘Towards a More “Human” Human Security: The Importance of Existential Security in Resilient Communities’.
  • Christopher Hobson, United Nations University, Japan, ‘Rescuing Human Security and Responding to Natural Disasters’.
  • Naomi Zack, University of Oregon, USA, ‘Ethics of Disasters and Hurricane Katrina’.
  • Elaine Enarson, Brandon University, USA, ‘Human Security and Natural Disasters: What a Gender Lens Brings’.
  • Johan Cels, UNHCR Representation in Japan, ‘Natural Disasters and Forced Population Displacements: A Human Security Perspective’.
  • Jennifer Hyndman, York University, Canada, ‘Managing Vulnerability in the Face of Dual Disasters’.
  • Paul Zeccola, AusAID, Indonesia ‘Human Security in Aceh: From Violent Conflict to the Indian Ocean Tsunami’.
  • Matthew Bolton, Pace University, USA, ‘Human Security and the Social Contract: The Implications of the Informalization of Haiti’s Post-Earthquake Reconstruction’.
  • Mayumi Sakamoto, Disaster Reduction and Human Renovation Institution, Kobe, Japan, ‘Emergency response in the Great Hanshin-Awaji earthquake and the Great East Japan earthquake: Lessons and Improvements’.
  • Yuzuru Isoda, Tohoku University, Japan, ‘Housing, Employment and Selective Migration of Evacuees from the Fukushima Nuclear Accident’.
  • Jeff Kingston, Temple University,  ‘Mismanaging Risk and the Fukushima Nuclear Crisis’.
  • Yukie Osa, Rikkyo University and AAR, Japan, ‘Human Security vs. National Security in a Developed Country : Japan’s Triple disaster and the Challenges of Japanese Civil Society’.
  • Kaoruko Seki, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, USA, ‘Humanitarian Assistance and Human Security: Why Civil-Military Coordination Matters’.
  • Tim Curry, US Forces Japan, ‘Responding to the Tsunami’.
  • Junko Otani, Osaka University, ‘Ageing Society and Post-Disaster Community Security’.
  • Emily Ying Yang Chan, CERT-CUHK-Oxford University Centre for Disaster and Medical Humanitarian Response, Chinese University of Hong Kong, ‘The Implication of Demographic and Epidemiological Transition in Natural Disaster Relief in Middle-Income Developing Countries’.
  • Vesselin Popovski, United Nations University, Japan, ‘State Negligence and Natural Disaster as Human Rights Violations’.