Call for Papers: Fragmented Regional Worlds: Inequality and Populism in a Globalising World

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Recent economic and political developments have shed a new light on regional dynamics in Australia, New Zealand and other parts of the developed and developing world.  In Australia, new political movements, including Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party and the Nick Xenophon Team, have combined populism with a distinctive regional agenda.  At the same time, support for the Greens in both New Zealand and Australia is concentrated in urban areas, and especially the inner city, and this process of political fragmentation points to an increasing spatial divide that reflects growing inequality, as well as the emergence of cultural and other differences.  The parallels with the US Presidential vote in 2016 and the UK’s decision to exit the European Union are significant.

This conference uses these recent developments as a backdrop for understanding the social, economic and political drivers of regional change and policy responses, in a post-truth world. We encourage papers that consider Antipodean perspectives of these phenomena, as well as those that seek to provide a broader understanding of contemporary processes of regional changes from across the globe. The focus of the conference will be to examine globalisation and the responses to its impacts, as well as the development of new forms of state intervention in society and the economy, and the changing relationship between, and within, state actors, civil society, the not-for-profit sector and corporations. Additionally, we welcome papers across a range of themes relating to the urban, rural and regional aspects of social, cultural and economic changes in contemporary society. We anticipate specific sessions in the conference relating to:

  • Sydney as a global city;
  • Changing urban and regional systems in the developed and developing world;
  • Place, urban and regional leadership;
  • Food, social welfare and sustainability;
  • Local government and regional development processes.

Abstract Submission

The Regional Studies Association welcome papers from all academics, students and those working in policy and practice. The event is inclusive and offers networking opportunities for all in our field. Please submit proposals for papers in the form of a 250 – 500 word abstract (text only, no pictures, graphs or tables) through the Regional Studies Association online portal by 28th April 2017. For further information about the conference and abstract submission, visit

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