PhD Confirmation Seminar: Tactics and temporalities of high-rise living: the production of inclusivity in suburban Melbourne


PhD Confirmation Seminar: Tactics and temporalities of high-rise living: the production of inclusivity in suburban Melbourne

Room B1.24, Basement
School of Population Health
221 Bouverie St, Carlton


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T: +61 3 8344 9395

The growing densification of cities, including Melbourne, is both an expression of the financialization logics of commercial – and more recently residential – real estate and a political answer to a sustained demographic growth of the urban world. This research on high-rise living is emerging from the increasing number of high density apartment buildings being developed in Melbourne’s suburbs, a highly visible phenomenon that has gained in symbolic signification and economic importance. High-rises are also playing a crucial role in people’s daily lives, especially for those who inhabit tall buildings. Yet micro-scale practices in the specific context of highrise living remain insufficiently studied, with no suitable account of the methods to assess them. This research argues that analysing high-rise micro-spaces is a fruitful entry point to discuss the city’s changing social practices, especially with issues related to inclusion and exclusion that are at stake in the daily production of homes and neighbourhoods. Architectural places indeed operate as spaces of encounter, conviviality, avoidance and/or power. We can thus ask what sets of tactics are arising as a consequence of, or in resistance to, the affordances or constraints of the high-rise as well as how and when potentially diverse cultures, socio-economic backgrounds and classes intersect and altogether make and share the building. Acknowledging the heterogeneous and social qualities of time, the research investigates how high-rise living gets entwined with the daily time-space arrangements individuals create in these spaces. The project focuses on six recent high-density developments located in three inner and middle suburbs of Melbourne and whose design include a range of common areas, amenities and services. Using a set of qualitative methodologies, the research draws on De Certeau et al’s theorisation of resistance in The Practice of Everyday Life (1984) to analyse the tactics and strategies informed by both residents and developers in the production of spaces of inclusion and exclusion.


  •  Louise Dorignon
    Louise Dorignon, School of Geography, The University of Melbourne & at Université Lumière Lyon 2