From Greenfields to Edge Urban: Cultural Policy and Suburbanisation in Campbelltown, Sydney

By Penelope Stannard.

Published by Spaces and Flows: An International Journal of Urban and ExtraUrban Studies

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This paper argues that a better understanding of suburbia is warranted within the cultural policy discussion given that Australia is essentially a suburban nation. Using the case study of Campbelltown, located fifty-five kilometres southwest of the Sydney central business district and home to 142,000 people, the paper examines suburban environments through notions of cultural identity, including events and narratives, and explores how urban growth and changing landscapes have contributed to constructing a range of suburban experiences that constitute contemporary Sydney. How suburbia is defined and understood locally contrasts to the discourse of suburbia that exists within the spheres of cultural policy and popular commentary. For Campbelltown, this causes a significant disjunction that is underscored by suburban aspiration on the one hand, and suburban disadvantage on the other. The paper discusses what this means for cultural policy at a local and state government level and, in particular, the policy approach pursued through the development and direction of the Campbelltown Arts Centre.

Keywords: Cultural Policy, Suburbanisation, Suburbia, Creative Cities, Urban Development, Cultural Identity, Community, Cultural Heritage

Spaces and Flows: An International Journal of Urban and ExtraUrban Studies, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp.51-60. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 920.864KB).

Penelope Stannard

Doctoral Student, Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Technology, Sydney, Sydney, Australia

Penelope Stannard has twenty years of professional experience in the Australian contemporary arts sector, spanning cultural strategy and policy, producing and commissioning projects across multidisciplinary platforms, arts education, social history, public art, audience development and community cultural development. Her recent professional positions include Arts and Cultural Development Manager, Canada Bay Council; Program Director, Campbelltown Arts Centre and Arts Development Officer, Parramatta City Council. Her recent academic positions include lecturing in Music Festivals, The Sydney Conservatorium of Music and Organisational Management, Masters of Arts Administration, College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales. She is a recipient of an Australian Postgraduate Award. Penny is undertaking a PhD at the University of Technology, Sydney, where she is researching the intersections between cultural policy.