The wonderful thing about great town planning is that when you place SMEs front and centre of the process, you achieve one very crucial thing: you build community. SMEs like cafes excel when there is community - you only need to go to Manhattan or visit a raft of small towns in Italy to see what happen when planning is intrinsically linked to community. Sadly in Australia it’s hard to find well structured planning policy. Much of what we consider ‘planning policy’ is driven by short-term thinking that has more to do with election cycles and stamp duty revenue, than vibrant SMEs intrinsically linked to community. But, with some great leadership we can make real change and the solution really does sit with SMEs.


Regional Australia

We’ve dropped the ball on regional Australia. Regional towns are struggling as infrastructure like rail - that once linked everything together - lays idle and rusting away. Why has this occurred and what are some of the solutions?


Oxford St Study

Three years ago SMEA was commissioned by a Sydney Councillor to undertake a detailed economic assessment of Oxford St Sydney. At the time 80 retail venues - SMEs - laid vacant and solutions needed to be found. What did we come up with and how did SMEs solve the puzzle?

Why is Planning so bad in Canberra?

The empirical evidence proves Canberra has a chequered planning history. Ironic when it’s considered one of the most centrally planned capital cities in the world. Canberra has made some very bad decisions over the last decade that will haunt the nations capital for a long time. Why is planning then so bad in Canberra and how is this affecting SMEs?