Professor Troy has been Australia’s pre-eminent urban policy thinker for many decades.
He graduated in Engineering from the University of Western Australia and undertook postgraduate training in town planning in the United Kingdom and in Highway Engineering at the University of New South Wales. For more than forty years since, he has advanced innovative perspectives of environmental sustainability and social justice in Australian policy circles of urban and regional planning. He has enhanced these fields in Australian universities as well, especially by coordinating national research and mentoring young scholars
In the last years of his ANU career, he was the primary force in establishing the Urban Frontiers Program at the University of Western Sydney. Since then, he has worked with the Vice Chancellor at Griffith University to establish a special chair and research program in urban studies. Having retired from the ANU he now holds an Emeritus Professorship and Visiting Fellowship at the ANU, in addition to visiting and adjunct positions at three other Australian universities (Sydney, UNSW and Griffith). Since 1968 his visits to the Department of Town and Regional Planning at this University have been frequent and the interchange of ideas with staff and students constant.
His research and writing have never stopped in all these years, centring always on the social and environmental questions associated with urban policy and planning. His has been one of few voices criticising the accepted planning wisdom of urban consolidation over the last decades (his 1996 book on this is widely respected). Accompanying his refereed journal articles, books and book chapters are very many edited books, edited working papers (including 64 of these in the Urban Research Unit working paper series) and conference proceedings which testify to his generosity in drawing others in to discussions about urban planning, and to his constant encouragement of younger scholars to publish their work. His current research on water and energy use in households across several Australian cities is a pioneering study of great significance. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia.
Professor Troy was made an officer in the Order of Australia (AO) in 1989 for his contribution to education and to urban and regional development. In 2004 he was placed on the Year of the Built Environment Register as an Exemplar.