Urban governance in Western Australia : searching for the room to manoeuvre

Shane Greive

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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    [Truncated] Western Australia (WA) is a separate State within the Commonwealth Federation of Australia, and its political administrative territory covers the western third of the continent. The current population is approximately 2 million, but the State's metropolitan capital Perth,is home to some 75% of the populace - see Figure 1.1. The next largest urban centre, the City of Bunbury 200km due south of Perth, has a population approaching 70 000 inclusive of its surrounding small towns. Although this study of urban governance in Western Australia is an inquiry into how the State's urban development processes are governed, the 'urban' reference should be liberally rather than rigidly interpreted. Put another way, the focus is on the way human settlements are governed and, while this may be considered too broad, it down plays the distinction between town and country, and yet still conveys a sense of the places where people reside. According to Castells (1977:174) 'the "urban" refers not only to a spatial form but also to the social organisation of the processes of reproduction'. Furthermore, towns and cities can be understood as arenas for political contestation where overlays of mutual and conflicting interests are expressed and acted upon (Castells 1978). In the case of Western Australia, the 'urban' qualifier also has a practical appeal, given the distribution of the populace, and the limited numbers of workers engaged in agriculture, mining, and other non urban industries.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • The University of Western Australia
    Publication statusUnpublished - 2000

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