Business Sydney | Thought Leadership 


Influence. Inspire. Initiate

Business Sydney is proud to share our thought leadership collateral. Produced in partnership with Business Sydney members and stakeholders, these papers outline important issues that impact Sydney and need to be understood and discussed more broadly to leverage positive results for our great city. 

We commend these papers to you. 




Business Sydney doesn't pretend to be an expert on homelessness or how to solve it. We admire the work of charities and government agencies as they try to alleviate the crisis. 

However, like the wider community, we wonder why it is that in a prosperous city such as Sydney, hundreds of people can be sleeping rough each night. Or that so many of them have serious mental health issues and at a time when mental health services are stretched beyond breaking point. 

We find it amazing that there are people living under the steps of Sydney Town Hall, under the light rail viaduct at Wentworth Park, at Circular Quay and at numerous other locations. 

So, it is a breath of fresh air to know that organisations involved in Sydney Zero are collaborating to address the issue. Sydney Zero's objectives are that rough sleeping in Sydney should be rare, of limited duration and, when it does happen, a person is housed with no need to return to the streets. 

This paper articulates a six-point action plan, which we believe can make a significant difference to homelessness, specifically in relation to rough sleeping in our city.


A solution to Sydney's Perfect Housing Storm

Three major arterial roads – Parramatta Road, Victoria Road and the Great Western Highway – offer imaginative housing solutions, and an estimated 75,000 new housing units.

Business Sydney and Business Western Sydney believe the real solution to the housing crisis rests with the entrepreneurial spirit, and this thought leadership paper outlines the when, where and how to make the most of opportunities that are good for our city.

Please read this paper, supported by the Housing Industry Association (HIA), as we seek to work with government presenting real solutions on how to resolve Sydney’s housing crisis.


It's more than the summer cruise season in Sydney

Business Sydney was among the first organisations to support the resumption of cruising and its return as an important contributor to our city's economy.

Business Sydney is proud to count Carnival Australia among our members. Carnival Australia accounts for seven cruise lines, and its 2023-2024 cruise season in Sydney will be a spectacular return for the cruising industry and a great foundation of economic opportunity for Sydney and NSW. 

Our message to governments at all levels and to the business community is that cruising's contribution to Sydney is real and has been for decades.

Please read this thought leadership paper that was launched at Business Sydney and Carnival Australia's joint breakfast onboard P&O Cruising's Pacific Adventure in August 2023.


Are a Vital Part of the Fabric of Our Economy

NSW is home to more than 220,000 international students studying across universities, vocational education institutions, English language colleges and schools.

Education visitors, as they are known officially, make an enormous contribution to Sydney's economy. In fact, international education is the second largest of our State's service exports, worth $9.7 billion in 2022.

Read more about the positive impacts of international students for Sydney and the work of Study NSW in this paper. 


Your Seven Point Plan

This paper is a Business Sydney and Lifeline Australia collaboration highlighting the importance of maintaining a workplace environment that is conducive to safeguarding the mental health and wellbeing of employees.

The paper is based on Lifeline Australia’s long experience at the forefront of crisis support and suicide prevention in Australia. 

Business Sydney was pleased to collaborate with Lifeline in the development of this paper at a time when businesses and their employees are subject to diverse challenges including pressures associated with the rising cost of living. 

This thought leadership paper will help give the business community the confidence needed to take action to improve mental health in their workplaces. 


10 point plan

On 2nd March 2023, Business Sydney along with Urbis and Sydney City Police Area Command launched our 10-point plan on improving women’s engagement in Sydney’s night-time economy.

As we continue to recover from the pandemic, we must take every opportunity to revitalise our economy – and improving female participation in the night-time economy is key.

Our 10-point plan covers everything from improving features of the built environment such as lighting and safe areas to broadening the range of activities offered and improving safety on public transport. It highlights the issues holding women back from being able to fully engage in the night-time economy. It illustrates the perception of safety, or a lack thereof, which is deeply engrained in the life experience of many women.


Permanent Performance Shells in Sydney's Iconic Parklands

Greater Sydney is one of the world's great cities, and needs a culture and entertainment offer to match. Outdoor events and festivals are a central part of the cultural life of our city, yet remarkably we still lack a dedicated permanent venue for outdoor events. This has been recognised as a gap in Sydney's cultural infrastructure provision for many years.  

This report presents a new vision for outdoor entertainment in Greater Sydney, through the creation of state-of-the-art permanent performance 'shells', integrated into and enhancing diverse parklands in Sydney's three city centres: The Domain, Parramatta Park, and South Creek Park in Western Sydney's new Bradfield City Centre.


A collaborative Vision for growth from Culture and Creativity

Sydney had a thriving, if somewhat undervalued arts and culture scene prior to COVID-19, and now has a great opportunity to capitalise on us leading the way in vaccination and reopening to establish the harbour city as the cultural capital of the nation and the Asia-Pacific region.

While individually our great arts venues and cultural institutions provide a wondrous choice for Sydneysiders and tourists, bringing them together into a collaborative and co-operative coalition can create an arts and culture sector that becomes something bigger than the sum of its parts.



Jobs for the 24-hour Economy

This Paper puts a jobs focused microscope over the Sydney CBD. With our expert partner, Urbis, we have conducted a forensic examination of two key areas in the CBD – the Northern Gateway and the Camperdown Health and Education Precinct – to understand who currently works at night, the opportunities of who could work at night, and what interventions and policies are needed to ensure our metropolis emerges from the pandemic as a strong, vibrant, and diverse 24-hour economy.

FReight and the city

rethink. reroute. reshape

Now more than ever, as Sydney and the nation recovers from the pandemic, economic productivity and prosperity matters. This means freight matters. Drawing on the insights of industry leaders at the front line and under the expert guidance of Dr. Neil Temperley, this paper rethinks, reroutes and reshapes the freight system to challenge the current paradigm and provide a blueprint for the future.



THE future of Oxford street

Business Sydney in collaboration with Hatch RobertsDay, not only provides a way forward to secure the future of Oxford Street, but also challenges and encourages urban leaders across Sydney and New South Wales to take these ideas and apply them to high streets in their local communities. 

Now is the time to back our High Streets and encourage big thinking and big action. By doing so we can secure the future of the streets that are the backbone of our communities - the Streets that we love.

Great cities do not happen by chance

Now is the time to take planning and land use fit for purpose

Our demonstrated success in containing the pandemic whilst also supporting our fellow citizens and businesses cope with the economic downturn, can be repeated in how we plan for and build a better urban environment, an even more vibrant economy, and a more resilient society.



moving sydney to a 24-hour city

Now is the perfect time for Sydney to press the reset button on this debate. With much of our daytime and nighttime economies in hibernation, now is the time for us to plan for their reemergence, to put in place the policies and investments which will support the much needed jobs growth and productivity our damaged economy will need. With our cities cultural output stifled and our theatres, music venues and galleries closed, we need to work quickly to get the show back on the road.