Welcome to SOAC 2017

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

We look forward to seeing you at the State of Australian Cities Conference, to be held in Adelaide from 28–30 November 2017. This will be the 8th such conference since 2003. We are conscious of the status that SOAC now enjoys as the pre-eminent refereed conference on Australian urban research and we aspire to maintain and enhance that status in 2017. In due course the conference papers will be added to the impressive collection of material from previous SOAC conferences which now exists on-line.

We have been fortunate this year to secure an address on the opening morning of the conference from Jay Weatherill, Premier of South Australia and the leader since 2011 of a Labor government which has now been in office since 2002. Premier Weatherill previously served as a Minister of both Housing and Planning and, more recently, he has become a major participant in national debates on topics including renewable energy and the future of the Murray-Darling Basin. Another key speaker on the first day of the conference will be Professor John Spoehr, Director of the Australian Industrial Transformation Institute at Flinders University, who will be providing a perspective for interstate and overseas visitors on the economic and social challenges facing South Australia a month or so after the last car rolled off the production line at Elizabeth’s Holden factory.

The Public City Lecture now forms an essential part of SOAC and in 2017 this will be delivered by Associate Professor Libby Porter. Libby is the co-author of a new book on ‘Planning in Indigenous Australia’ and her lecture on the first day is entitled

From an urban country to urban Country: Confronting the cult of denial in Australian cities’.

Papers at SOAC 2017 will be organised across the seven well-established themes of Economy, Environment, Governance, Structure, Movement and Infrastructure, Housing and Social, and Health. There will also be three significant plenary panel sessions on Housing Affordability, Resilience and the continuing challenge of achieving more productive relationships between academic researchers and urban policymakers. The 2017 program also includes a number of book launches, a ‘Women in Cities’ lunch, a series of workshops organized by the Australian Urban Research Infrastructure Network (AURIN) and other events convened by ACRN and the Australasian Early Career Urban Research Network (AECURN). AECURN has also been centrally involved in the development of panels and other key program elements.

2017 will be the 100th anniversary of the First Australian Town Planning and Housing Conference and Exhibition held in Adelaide. We plan to mark this seminal event in Australian planning history in a number of ways in the course of the conference, including an exhibition entitled The Australian Town Planning Conference and Exhibition 17-24 October 1917: In Retrospect commemorating the events of 1917 and a public lecture by Professor Rob Freestone on the evening of the first day. This lecture will also form the Planning Institute of Australia’s annual Tom McKenna lecture and will take place on UniSA’s City West campus. Most other SOAC events will be on the University of Adelaide campus but the third host university, Flinders, will be providing the venue for the biennial PhD symposium, which continues to go from strength to strength, and also an ECR workshop immediately before the conference begins.

We look forward to seeing you all at SOAC 2017

Emeritus Professor Stephen Hamnett
SOAC 2017 Organising Committee

NEWS - (22 Nov 2017)


2017 marks the 100th anniversary of the First Australian Town Planning and Housing Conference and Exhibition, held in Adelaide in 1917. This will be commemorated at SOAC by a number of events, including an exhibition and a free public lecture on 28 November by Professor Robert Freestone.
Colonel William Light oversaw the first Plan of the City of Adelaide in 1837 and his statue stands on Montefiore Hill in the Park Lands between the city centre and North Adelaide.  The organisers of the 2017 SOAC Conference have now received approval to add a plaque to the statue commemorating the 100th anniversary of the 1917 Conference and a brief ceremony will take place on 27 November at 3.30 to unveil this plaque which will note that that it was affixed ‘on the occasion of the State of Australian Cities Conference, November 2017’.
Any SOAC delegates who have arrived in Adelaide by Monday afternoon are most welcome to come along to take part in the event and to enjoy the view back across the city. One fairly direct way to get to Colonel Light’s statue from North Terrace is to walk north along King William Road, past the Festival Centre and across the River Torrens. Turn left just before St Peter’s Cathedral into Pennington Terrace and walk up the hill until you reach the statue on your left. The walk from North Terrace should take about 20 minutes.
Stephen Hamnett
Emeritus Professor of Urban and Regional Planning, University of South Australia
Conference Chair, SOAC 2017


The University of Adelaide, North Terrace campus

The North Terrace campus is the University of Adelaide's largest and is located on North Terrace between Kintore Avenue and Frome Road.


Registration Desk

The registration desk will be located in the foyer of the Braggs Theatre in the Braggs Building.  It will be open at the following times:

Tuesday 28th November 2017                             7.30 am – 5.15 pm

Wednesday 29th November 2017                       8.15 am – 5.00 pm

Thursday 30th November 2017                            8.15 am – 3.00 pm

Important Dates

Call for Abstracts Open
Now closed  

Abstract Submissions - NOW CLOSED
27 March 2017 

Abstracts in Review
31 March – 30 April 2017  

Notification to Authors
5 May 2017

Full Papers due for Review - Now extended
24 July 2017

Papers in Review
24 July – 11 September 2017

Notification to Authors
15 September 2017

Revised Papers Due
18 October 2017

Papers Programmed
16 October 2017

Early Bird Registration ends
13 October 2017

Local Organising Committee

Emeritus Professor Stephen Hamnett (Chair)
University of South Australia

Associate Professor Emma Baker
University of Adelaide

Dr Kathryn Davidson
University of South Australia

Associate Professor Christine Garnaut
University of South Australia

Dr Nicholas Holyoak
Flinders University

Professor Jon Kellett
University of Adelaide

Dr Jasmine Palmer (AECURN Rep)
University of South Australia

Dr Matthew Rofe
University of South Australia

Professor Rocco Zito
Flinders University

Meeting Secretariat

For further information, please contact the Meeting Manager:

Lara Malcolm
The Meeting People Pty Ltd
PO Box 764, Mitcham SA 5062, AUS
T  +61 8 8177 2215
E  lara@themeetingpeople.com.au

Host Institutions

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