How will the NDIS Change Australian Cities?

People with disability represent a fifth of the Australian population (AIHW 2015), and this proportion is expected to increase with population ageing. With the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) being progressively rolled out across Australia, this is a particularly appropriate time for the Australian urban research agenda to engage with disability in more meaningful ways.

This Issues Paper sets out a research agenda for examining the impacts of the NDIS on Australian cities over the first decade of its full implementation (from 2019 onwards). The impacts of deinstitutionalisation, the last paradigmatic shift in disability policy, are drawn upon to consider possible changes in the lives of individuals, communities and cities in the imminent NDIS era. Since Australian cities of the early 21st century have significantly changed in terms of society, economy, governance and spatial disparities over the past 30 years, we begin to explore how the NDIS reforms might work within rapidly evolving cities. The Issues Paper addresses two primary questions: first, how will outcomes for NDIS participants vary in different urban contexts and domains? And, second, in what ways will the NDIS drive wider change in Australian cities affecting people both with and without disability?

Read the full paper


Ilan Wiesel

Carolyn Whitzman

Christine Bigby

Brendan Gleeson

MSSI strives to inform and stimulate public conversation about key sustainability questions facing our society. Each MSSI Issues Paper aims to encapsulate the insights of a thinker or practitioner on a particular issue of importance to society. Although material is often closely informed by peer-reviewed academic research, the papers themselves are presented in a clear, discursive style intended for a broad readership.