Dodging the Wrecking Ball – Food in the High-Rise City

Monday 5 September 2016
5.00 - 6.30PM

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Level 6 Seminar Room| Charles Perkins Centre | Johns Hopkins Drive | University of Sydney


How do we create healthy food environments alongside densification and urban sprawl?

As part of the Food @ Sydney Series:  ‘Sydney’s Food Futures’ in association with Sydney Ideas

The Milan Urban Food Policy Pact (2015) was developed in recognition of the challenges posed to food systems by accelerating urbanisation.  How do we create healthy food environments alongside inner city densification and outer city extensification? Sydney’s population will reach five million in 2016. Our inner suburbs are the most densely populated in Australia and the up-zoning of public land for private development continues apace. In the growing city healthy food environments need to be defended alongside public land, social housing and heritage sites. What food-related urban planning policy actions are required? Join our panel of experts to explore this question, and to anticipate what Sydney’s urban food system will look like in the future.

Dr Jennifer Kent is a Research Fellow in the Urban and Regional Planning program at the University of Sydney. Jennifer’s research interests are at the intersections between urban planning, transport and human health and she is widely considered one of the leading urban planning scholars on healthy built environments in Australia. Prior to joining the University of Sydney, Jennifer was a Lecturer at Macquarie University and Research Associate at the Healthy Built Environments Program at the University of NSW. She has also worked as a town planner in NSW in both local government and as a consultant. Jennifer publishes regularly in high ranking scholarly journals and her work has been used to inform policy development in NSW and Australia, including Sydney’s most recent metropolitan strategy – A Plan for Growing Sydney.

Dr Chin Jou is a lecturer in American history here at the University of Sydney. Her forthcoming book is titled, Supersizing Urban America: How Inner Cities Got Fast Food with Government Help. The book chronicles the development of federal urban renewal and business policies that have subsidised the expansion of the fast food industry since the late-1960s, transforming predominantly African-American, urban communities into obesity-promoting fast food havens.

Christopher Zinn  is an advocate campaigner who works in the marketplace of consumer empowerment which is developing with the spread of the digital revolution. His initiative Determined Consumer argues focused and
co-ordinated choices by ordinary citizens can bring about  positive change in markets in faster and more directed ways than politically compromised regulation. He is currently working with on a number of campaigns including one for consumers aged over 50;  encouraging businesses not to surcharge customers for using credit cards and with independent local greengrocers fighting for fair competition with supermarket giants. Chris has worked for consumer groups One Big Switch and CHOICE and as a journalist reported for print , radio and TV including the London Guardian and several ABC programs.

Chair: Dr Alana Mann is a Senior Lecturer and Degree Director in the Department of Media and Communications, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Sydney. Her book on international food sovereignty campaigns, Global Activism in Food Politics: Power Shift, was published in 2014. Alana is a member of the University of Sydney Environment Institute (SEI) project node ‘Food, People and the Planet’ and the global food security and nutrition node within the Charles Perkins Centre. She sits on the executive committee of the Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance (AFSA), an organisation dedicated to creating a more ecologically sound and fairer food system for all Australians.

Series Image: Ken + Julia Yonetani The Last Supper, 2014, salt, 900 × 75 × 125 cm  image courtesy of the artists
Seminar Image: 107 Projects Rooftop Community Garden, Redfern