‘Committees for cities’ as champions of change: showcasing Australasian legacies: lessons via The Committee for Perth, Western Australia (13181)
The growing movement of ‘Committees for Cities and Regions’ across Australasia sponsors a style of competitive city development that begs for comparative city-specific and broader urban analysis. As self-selected change champions, the movement’s trajectories and legacies offer parallel and bespoke insights into urban development of collaborative strategic planning for functional cities. As champions they strategically navigate interactions, priorities, and relationships through an increasingly-sophisticated nexus of philanthropic entrepreneurialism, research, and advocacy. The paper contextualises a rich case study against common and bespoke dimensions of an emerging movement relating to governing rapidly-growing globalising Australasian cities within a wider Asian-Pacific and global context. This co-ordinated and independently-resourced response to urban restructuring is rapidly gaining momentum with a most-recently established committee for Adelaide (2013). The secretariat for the movement currently sits with the Committee for Perth (CfP). The CfP asserts itself as ‘an active think tank and a positive and influential advocate for the Perth region’ with clear and emerging impact on leadership and stewardship in urban planning and development (Committee for Perth, 2014). Using archival and conceptual review the authors argue that it is fundamental to understand the legacies and operating characteristics of the CfP – including how the CfP facilitates governance interactions, and is a ‘a curator of knowledge and sponsor of change …based on substantial research’ (Committee for Perth, 2014) – and for the emerging challenges and opportunities for comparative urbanism. The paper concludes by setting out a research agenda pursuing an evaluative framework that particularly advances the travelling discourses of collaborative governance.