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Professor of Global Urban Politics and Director, Melbourne Centre for Cities, The University of Melbourne

Michele Acuto is director of the Melbourne Centre for Cities, Professor in Urban Politics and Associate Dean (Research) in the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning. He is an expert in urban governance and international affairs.

Michele is also a non-resident Senior Fellow of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. Before joining the Faculty, Michele was Director of the City Leadership Lab and Professor of Diplomacy and Urban Theory at University College London, having previously worked as Stephen Barter Fellow of the Oxford Programme for the Future of Cities at the University of Oxford. He also taught at the University of Canberra, University of Southern California, Australian National University and National University of Singapore. Outside academia, Michele worked for the Institute of European Affairs in Dublin, the International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL), the Kimberley Process for conflict diamonds, the European Commission's response to pandemic threats. He also has worked for several years on city leadership and city networks with, amongst others, Arup, World Health Organization, World Bank Group, the C40 Climate Leadership Group, and UN-Habitat. In 2018-19 he co-chaired the Nature Sustainability International Expert Panel on "science and the future of cities".

Michele is the author of several articles, publications and policy documents on urban governance, international politics and urban development challenges.


  • 2018–present
    Chair professor, University of Melbourne
  • 2016–2018
    Professor, University College London
  • 2013–2016
    Senior lecturer, University College London
  • 2011–2013
    Research Fellow, University of Oxford
  • 2010–2012
    Research Fellow, University of Southern California


  • 2019
    Leading Cities, UCL Press
  • 2013
    The Urban Link, Routledge
  • 2013
    City Leadership and Global Governance, Global Governance
  • 2013
    The New Climate Leaders?, Review of International Studies
  • 2013
    The naïveté of large numbers, Yale Journal of International Affairs

Professional Memberships

  • International Studies Association
  • American Association of Geographers