AHCP Seminar Series: Cities of Opportunity: Affordable Housing

Affordable Housing Challenge Project is an initiative of the University of Toronto School of Cities. The AHCP collective brings together scholars from across the University of Toronto, who are researching issues related to housing affordability from different disciplinary perspectives, with the objective of working together to research, discuss and debate the causes, processes, policies and consequences of declining housing affordability.

Friday, June 21, 2019, 12:00-1:00 pm
MY 320, Myhal Centre
55 St George St Toronto, ON M5S 0C9

Scaling up Affordable and Social Housing through Partnerships and Planning Tools: Lessons from Melbourne’s Transforming Housing program


  • Dr. Carolyn Whitzman, Professor of Urban Planning, University of Melbourne, As of 2019, University of Ottawa

Event description:

Over the past six years, Melbourne Australia’s Transforming Housing research program has developed a university-community partnership involving local and senior governments, private and non-profit developers, philanthropic and private finance. This partnership has, in turn, influenced housing and planning policy, including getting a new definition of affordable housing and putting it as a core purpose of the planning act, and developing a series of tools to implement policy: needs assessment, locational rating, mapping appropriate government ‘lazy land’ for social housing, affordable housing calculator, and cost benefit analysis calculator.

This presentation discusses how partnerships between researchers, policy-makers and practitioners were made (and un-made) and how the tools might be utilized in Canada.

Speaker biography:

Dr. Carolyn Whitzman has been Professor of Urban Planning at the University of Melbourne. She has recently relocated to the University of Ottawa. The presentation is based on her recent research on affordable housing partnerships

  • “Private Developers and the Public Good: Can a Socially Constructed Market Deliver Quality Affordable Housing for Australian Cities?” Urban Policy and Research, 2019.
  • “Rights Talk, Needs Talk and Money Talk in Affordable Housing Partnerships.” Journal of Planning Education and Research, 2018.
  • “Participatory Action Research in Affordable Housing Partnerships: Collaborative Rationality, or Sleeping with the Growth Machine?” Planning Practice & Research, 2017.

Professor Whitzman is the lead editor of Building Inclusive Cities: Women’s Safety and the Right to the City (Earthscan, 2013), author of Suburb, Slum, Urban Village: Transformations in a Toronto Neighbourhood [Parkdale] 1875-2002 (UBC Press, 2009), and The Handbook of Community Safety, Gender, and Violence Prevention: Practical Planning Tools (Earthscan, 2008).