Martin Payne Practitioner-in-Residence Program

Strengthening industry engagement at the Trust

The Henry Halloran Research Trust (HHRT) supports cross-disciplinary research that informs urban and regional policy, planning, and the built environment. We aim to advance scholarly contributions to these fields by leveraging the diverse disciplinary strengths across the University of Sydney’s many academic units and collaborators, while also promoting wider engagement across policy makers, practitioners, and the wider community.

The Practitioner in Residence Program allows experienced practitioners to undertake a period of supported research in residence at the University working on a project that is of interest to the Trust. Practitioners are expected to work closely within an academic unit to research and write a short and accessible paper, which is submitted at the conclusion of their residency, along with a detailed research report. They also have access to supervision by an academic advisor from the Trust. Each practitioner will deliver a public lecture on their findings on completion of their program.

Submission of applications for 2023 has concluded

In 2023, the PIR Program was renamed to honour and recognise the contributions of Martin Payne across urbanism and planning scholarship, practice, and education.

Depending on the program, the PIR could take between two-three months full time or be undertaken over a six or twelve-month period on a part-time basis. The HHRT are looking for topics/interests that are well formed, where the practitioner has a specific interest or aptitude, and where the project offers clear benefit to the practitioner and the nominated academic collaborator or unit. Proposed projects need to offer relevance to urban policy and practice, while also drawing on academic literature and scholarship.

Practitioners in Residence could apply to undertake a project within one of the Henry Halloran Research Trust ’s research incubators; or nominate another academic group or unit within the University of Sydney.

Proposals for projects addressing the themes of climate change, Indigenous land, or socially just cities and regions are particularly encouraged.

Up to two Practitioners will be selected in this round.

Practitioners might be working in government, industry, or the non-profit sector. They may be experienced urban planners or designers or have other professional expertise relevant to the research objectives and foci of the Trust – for instance, in relation to infrastructure, housing, the environment, heritage, land management or urban economics.

As part of the PIR program, practitioners may be expected to arrange a secondment from their substantive position in order to take up residency.

In addition to being situated within the nominated research Incubator or academic unit, the practitioner will be supervised by the PIR Co-ordinator.

At the commencement of their residency, training in the use of the University’s online library collection and electronic databases will be provided.

The final paper will be suitable for a broad policy and practice audience. It will:

  • Highlight from the practitioner’s perspective why the issue/topic is important;
  • Review the scholarly research literature and evidence and present a concise synthesis of key implications;
  • Opportunities for leverage with the university/trusts research and the research agenda of other programs at the University.
  • Apply this evidence to the topic under investigation;
  • Present an analysis of key data collected from available data sets/ documentary or other material;  
  • Identify impacts and implications for policy, practice, and further research.

Note that the timeframe does not anticipate projects requiring approval from the University’s Research Ethics Committee.

Papers will be up to 30 pages in length (8-12,000 words), written using the Trust’s document template.

The co-ordinator will review a draft of the paper. Their comments should be used to write the final version of the paper.

  1. Experience and demonstrated expertise of the practitioner
  2. A well-formed research proposal that can be delivered within the specified time period (see over for Guidelines for Henry Halloran Research Trust "Practitioner in Residence" Proposal)
  3. A demonstrated connection to scholarship
  4. The relevance of the topic for wider urban policy and practice consistent with the mission or the Trust

Submission of applications for 2023 has concluded

The Henry Halloran Research Trust Advisory Board will determine awards under the Practitioner in Residence program. The Trust reserves the right not to offer an award if it considers that the applications are not of sufficient merit.

Applications should be submitted via email to:

Nicole Gurran, Director, Henry Halloran Research Trust


1,000 words not including CV
  1. Introduction

    Provides a background to the issue and highlights its importance to the Trust research objectives and urbanism more widely. Identifies the proposed research incubator or academic unit for the residence.

  2. Research Question

    Provides a clear statement in a few sentences of the question/s to be addressed in the paper.

  3. Justification

    Provides a brief statement of why this particular research question is important and the kind of impact its resolution or an increased understanding of its nature might have on urban policy or practice. Reference to contemporary literature in support of this contention would be useful.

  4. Preliminary Literature

    A preliminary literature review to identify relevant work in the scholarly literature in relation to urban planning.

  5. Framework and contribution of research

    The PIR is founded on the desire to deploy the practical insights of the practitioner in a scholarly framework. Here you can provide a few paragraphs on your experience on the issue and how you intend to approach the research. Explain how you will benefit from your period in residence with the research Incubator or academic unit at the University of Sydney.

  6. Proposed research methodology

    This section will identify sources of empirical data to support the arguments addressed in the paper. It should be noted that given the brevity of the PIR candidature the capacity of the PIR to undertake original research interviews or surveys is limited by ethics requirements. This does not preclude the use of published industry and public domain material and on-record statements by players in the field. It is expected that the paper will be securely founded in matters of fact. 

  7. CV

    Attach your CV.
Image of Lucy Fokkema

2023 Practitioner in Residence

Exploring the role of affordable housing in successful health-focused innovation districts - Lucy Fokkema

Final report: Exploring the role of affordable housing in successful health focused innovation districts. (pdf, 1.3MB)