As a prosperous, global city, Melbourne will be influential in the world network of global cities. As a global city, Melbourne will attract global investment, compete in world markets and participate in global issues. Melbourne's knowledge industry will attract a skilled and talented workforce from around the world and support a diverse range of leading international, national and local businesses. Melbourne will connect with the world through state of the art transport and telecommunications infrastructure.
Future Melbourne 2008


There was significantly more comment on Melbourne leading in particular sectors than Melbourne reaching out across boards to have influence around the globe.

About a third of people who felt that Melbourne should be world leading thought that it could be best achieved through capitalising on Melbourne’s existing arts and culture reputation. Many others thought that Melbourne could or should be a leader in sustainability, with several identifying innovations in business and technology as the way to get Melbourne attention on the world stage.

Having Melbourne identified as a global city was important to many people.

There was significant overlap between this Priority and Priority 4.1. Generating Innovation from Knowledge, Priority 4.4. Online City and Goal 6. Connected City.

Summary of ideas (total: 91 statements)

Melbourne leading the way (75 statements)

A large number of Melburnians wanted to see their city being a national and global leader across a variety of different fields and sectors. This notion was illustrated by many statements across many different priorities being followed by a statement similar to, “…we should lead the world/Australia in this area.”

A large number of people wanted to see Melbourne leading the way through art and culture. People saw Melbourne’s arts and cultural assets as an important way to project their city’s image to the world. There were other tangible benefits seen in achieving this outcome, including protecting and promoting its arts and culture reputation, as well as increasing its reputation economically and socially. It was also seen by some as a way to cement Melbourne’s position as a top tourist destination. These statements represent some of those points.

Melbourne should lead the Asia Pacific as the arts and cultural capital of the region.

To have a city that thrives on arts and supports our arts industry to be amongst the world leaders in providing education and employment for those in the arts community. A smaller New York.

Many people stated that Melbourne should lead through its environmental practices. People wanted to see bold and innovative statements made to the world on how ‘green living’ or sustainable practices can be implemented in a large urban centre, through urban design or creating infrastructure for electric cars, for example. Leading the way in sustainability was thought by several people to be a progressive move towards building a more resilient city.

A large number of comments stated a desire for Melbourne to be a world leader in terms that contribute to it being ‘liveable’, or in several cases the ‘world’s most liveable city’. A variety of suggestions as to the way this could be achieved were offered, with the overarching intention behind them being to increase Melbourne’s standing as an Australian centre, and as a world city. Some comments advocated for Melbourne to create an iconic feature distinctive to the city. A culturally significant statue/monument, or bold architectural feature (an aerial walk/tramway for example) that would make Melbourne stand out internationally were given as examples. Capitalising on sport was also seen by some as a way that Melbourne could lead the way — through attracting sporting events, and promoting women in sport, for example.

Several people identified that Melbourne could lead through business, innovation, and technology. Some people identified Melbourne as a potential world-leader by way of hosting expos or creating innovation ‘hubs’, both designed to facilitate cross-fertilisation of ideas. New technologies and business opportunities were stated by some as being the way forward. This was one comment that supported this approach.

We need to develop our capacity for bringing new technologies into play. Digital security is an important area for exploration – this can be an area for future innovation and growth. Industry can be fostered and new skills developed. This could give Melbourne a competitive edge globally.

Melbourne as a global city (16 statements)

Many people stated that they want Melbourne to be seen as a global city.

Some people stated that this could be achieved by having a more outward or global focus, to attract and export ideas. A few people stated that this could occur by being more collaborative and interactive, and some thought that large scale commissioned works, or projects, were ways to achieve this.

Some suggested connectivity as a way for Melbourne to achieve global city status. Increasing connectivity in a number of ways was mentioned by individuals, including greater global connectivity; connectedness with people, and with nature; and being connected digitally. This was one discussion on this concept.

We need that global community to view Melbourne as ‘close’, and that it has something special and necessary. We need those technological connections to build a softer, more personal and direct linkage – and to entice people from outside to create here.

This idea was a dissenting voice, with regarding to being a global city seeking overseas investment.

Reliance on internationals -- we are relying too much on the money and profits of the Chinese and internationals. Their money is corrupt and in a few years we will go down the drain with them as a large proportion of our money is invested in them