6 May 2016


The US-Australia City Exchange on Innovation Ecosystems has kicked off in San Francisco.

Twenty delegates from New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia have arrived in San Francisco to take part in the Exchange, presented by the Future Cities Collaborative, an initiative of the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney.

The Exchange coincides with the Australian Federal Government launching the National Innovation and Science Agenda to embrace new ideas in innovation, harness new sources of growth, and challenge city-shapers to look for new ways to transform our cities and create a modern, dynamic, 21st century economy.

With Federal, State and Local Governments all seeking to encourage and expand the innovation economy in Australia, there has never been a better time to look to the United States for lessons on how to plan, finance, implement and support innovation districts in our cities. The Exchange will examine the various elements that contribute to the success of an innovation district – from the physical infrastructure to the social, economic and cultural shifts that need to occur to create a thriving innovation ecosystem that generates jobs in the new economy. With limited public resources available to achieve this change, city-shapers will need to learn how to create and sustain successful districts that can contribute to the new economy, provide housing and civic amenities, and renew inner-city precincts into world-class urban areas that are vibrant, connected, competitive, and resilient places.

Delegates were warmly welcomed to San Francisco by Mr Laki Kondylas, NSW Trade Commissioner for North America, and Jacinta McCann, Executive Vice President of our sponsoring partner AECOM who described the San Francisco and Bay area as having a hypercharged economy that is changing the face of the city and is a great place for us to examine and learn from.

First stop tomorrow is the City of Emeryville, located on the East Bay and home to Pixar, where Charlie Bryant, Community Development Director, will lead us through the story of the re-vitalisation of the mid-sized town into an innovation and tech hub.

Stay tuned for daily posts on the Exchange. 

Sponsored by: AECOM



Discussion with Jessica Lax from the Van Alen Institute
16 November 2016

The Future Cities Collaborative and AECOM recently hosted Jessica Lax from the Van Alen Institute, a 120 year old non-profit based in New York City dedicated to improving design in the public realm. The Institute divides their work into three areas: public programs, research and competitions.

Summary: Innovation Ecosystems Workshop - Making it Happen in Western Sydney
14 September 2016

The Future Cities Collaborative, together with Deloitte and UrbanGrowth NSW, recently conducted a workshop with Professor Ed Blakely to examine how we can accelerate the innovation economy in Western Sydney. A group of key actors and urban leaders came together to discuss the findings from our recent report, Growing the Australian Innovation Economy, and apply them to the region.

Report Launch a success | Growing the Australian Innovation Economy
14 September 2016

The official launch of the Future Cities Collaborative's most recent report, Growing the Australian Innovation Economy, co-produced with AECOM, was a resounding success with The Hon. Rob Stokes, Minister for Planning, presenting a keynote at the event that brought together an audience of over 100 key stakeholders across industry, academia and government at Customs House on 8 September.