Making ‘Global Sydney’: Spatial Imaginaries, Worlding and Strategic Plans


This article critically examines the expression of global spatial imaginaries in urban policy and planning. Following recent calls to understand how the global is ‘made up’ in and through cities, we argue for the usefulness of Roy and Ong’s concept of ‘worlding’. By analysing how strategic spatial plans envisage ‘Global Sydney’, the article reveals a constitutive spatial imaginary informed by the articulation of three interrelated elements: global city standards, comparative techniques and extra-local policy models. Unpacking how cities are selectively worlded through spatial imaginaries, the article advances an approach to urban globality as actively cultivated and differentially produced.