Inclusive City of Melbourne

With cobbled streets, narrow laneways and numerous inaccessible shops and restaurants, Melbourne faces significant challenges in being the world's most liveable city for people with disability. The City of Melbourne is committed to improving accessibility and has partnered with the University of Melbourne on a research study to hear from the people who live and work in Melbourne.

The Melbourne City Council Plan 2017 - 2021 acknowledges the systemic barriers in the built, social and information environment that often stop people with disability from fully and actively participating in city life.The City of Melbourne is investing in research on not only improving the accessibility of the city for people with mobility impairments, but improving accessibility and inclusivity for people with sensory, intellectual and psychosocial disabilities.

A series of solutions-focused workshops brought together people with disability, City of Melbourne staff, disability advocates and academics to brainstorm ways in which the City of Melbourne can be made more inclusive for people with disability. The ideas put forward were sorted into themes and then rated according to their importance and feasibility of implementation. Those ideas which are both scored as highly important and highly feasible will provide clear and direct actions for the City of Melbourne. Findings inform the City of Melbourne's upcoming Disability Action Plan, which will add to findings from a literature and practice review of international best practice.

The Council is committed to reducing and, where possible, eliminating barriers, and making Melbourne a ‘city for people’ – one that is accessible and inclusive for all.

The project’s lead investigator is Dr Jerome Rachele, a social epidemiologist from the Disability and Health Unit in the Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, and the NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Disability and Health. Dr Rachele is enthusiastic about the opportunities that the project will bring for people with disability in Melbourne. Dr Rachele says:

‘There are a number of things that excite me about this project. Most importantly, the project will provide a mechanism for people with disability to have a voice in the future of their city. The City of Melbourne have been great, working collaboratively with us and people with disability to improve inclusiveness, and their commitment to using the findings to inform their Disability Action Plan. This is widely regarded as best-practice for informing policy.’

The project is being co-funded by the Melbourne Disability Institute, the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute, the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation and the City of Melbourne. The findings of the project will be published in late March 2019.


The results of this project are now available for download in PDF, Word, and Easy English.


Advocating for Accessibility

Inform Online from Independence Australia

Nothing About us Without Us: Working Cross-Sector to make the City of Melbourne More Inclusive for People with Disability

The Power to Persuade