Emma is a commentator on Australian housing and home cultures. Emma’s writing appears appears in The Conversation and Parity Magazine, among others. She contributes to radio and print media across the country.

Op-eds and commentary


‘Responsible home ownership’: A barrier for homelessness policy?, Parity Magazine  The belief that home ownership is an individual choice and responsibility is dangerous. It suggests that non-home owners have simply not made the right choices and gives government a mandate to ignore the needs of people who are homeless or struggling to live in unaffordable rentals. Older Australians are especially at risk.

Housing: an infrastructure of care for older Australians, Parity Magazine.  The present crisis in the housing system is not just a crisis of affordability. It also represents a failure of housing as an infrastructure of care.


Life as an older renter, and what it tells us about the urgent need for tenancy reform. Proposed changes to NSW rental tenancy law are an improvement, but do not end the excessive rent increases and “no grounds” evictions that put renters – and older women in particular – at risk. (Syndicated to SBS, among others)

I won’t be at home at Christmas, I have a dog. Christmas can be a particularly hard time of year, and dogs are a vital support for many of the most vulnerable in our society.

Speaking with: Emma Power and Jennifer Kent about why Australian cities and homes aren’t built for pets. Dallas Rogers speaks with Emma Power, urban cultural geography senior research fellow at Western Sydney University, and Jennifer Kent, urban planning research fellow at the University of Sydney, about why a nation of pet lovers doesn’t seem very interested in planning for pets.

Three reasons the government promotes home ownership for older Australians. Government strategies to manage population ageing largely assume that older Australians are home owners. The problem with this approach is that not everyone is or can be a home owner. (Syndicated to Domain, The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald, Property Observer, and others).

Is this the budget that forgot renters? For the majority of Australia’s renters, housing will remain unaffordable, insecure and out of reach following the 2017-18 federal budget. (Syndicated to Domain, The Age, ABC News, and others).

For renters, making housing affordable is just the start.   We need three key policy changes to help make renting a viable long-term housing option (Syndicated to ABC News, The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald, and others).

Explainer: the financialisation of housing and what can be done about it. The winners and losers from a financialised housing system, and what can be done.

Sydney needs higher affordable housing targets. At least 15% of housing in new private developments, and 30% of housing on publicly owned land should be designated affordable. (Syndicated to The Sydney Morning Herald, Domain, and others)

As pet owners suffer rental insecurity, perhaps landlords should think again. Rental policy rarely recognises pets as important members of households. Instead, landlords and property agents typically restrict the right to keep pets. (Syndicated to ABC News, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Canberra Times, & others)

Reimagining NSW: four ways to boost community well-being and why it matters. Part of the Reimagining NSW Series, commissioned by the The Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Ret’d) Governor of New South Wales, and the New South Wales Vice Chancellor’s Committee.

With the rise of apartment living, what’s a nation of pet owners to do? Australia is a nation of pet owners. Yet as the popularity of apartment living grows, this culture is increasingly at risk from strata regulations that restrict the keeping of animals. Are these laws out of touch? (Syndicated to SBS and others)

Hidden housemates: when possums go bump in the night. Although common brushtail possums are usually associated with bushland environments these adaptable creatures are also highly attracted to human houses. (Syndicated to Australian Geographic, Domain & others)

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The changing face of the garden in Australia, How suburban garden cultures have changed in Australia over time.

Recent talks and engagements

Make Renting Fair, Keynote, Renting in later life, Parliament House NSW, October 2018.

National Homelessness Conference. Panel member, Older people and homelessness, talking on “Housing as a care infrastructure”, Melbourne, 6-7 August 2018.

Cities of Care Symposium, Keynote, Assembling caring capacity: care as a process of caring-with, University of Melbourne, 2018.

National Housing Conference. Keynote at launch of report, Ageing on the Edge in NSW – A State of Crisis for Older Renters, Darling Harbour, Sydney, 2017.

Older Women and Violence: Innovative Policies, Programs and Practices Symposium. Bridging Housing & Home: Older women’s housing security. Older Women’s Network (OWN) and School of Social Sciences & Psychology, Western Sydney University, Wednesday 21st September, 2016.

Tenants Union of NSW 40th Anniversary Forum House and Home: Looking back, looking forward. Monday 15th August, 2016. Discussion panel with Dr Dallas Rogers and Ned Cutcher, Senior Policy Officer, TUNSW.

New South Wales Vice Chancellor’s Committee Future Vision: Reimagining NSW Project, February 2016. 

Australian Companion Animals Council Think Tank 2013 Keynote speaker, Renting with Pets: The Challenges, June 2013.

Radio and podcasts

Interview – 2SER, Housing is an infrastructure of care.

Interview – Your Strata Property podcast – How to deal with pets in strata buildings

Radio National

Interview – The Future of Renting in Australia , Radio National Breakfast (15/11/18)


Interview – ABC Central West, Mornings – discussing life as an older renter (3/10/18)

Interview – ABC Radio Illawarra, Breakfasts – discussing the housing risks facing single older women who are not homeowners in the Illawarra region (12/9/18)

Interview – ABC Radio Sydney 5pm News – discussing Census 2016 release – Median weekly rent has increased faster than median weekly income. Single-person and single parent households are among the most affected. (27/6/17)

Interview – ABC Radio Newcastle 5pm News – discussing Census 2016 release – there is a need for flexible and affordable housing options to accommodate families living on a single income. (27/6/17)

Interview – ABC Radio Canberra Drive – discussing the need for greater security in the rental market and arguing for three key policy changes in tenancy legislation. (21/4/17)

Interview – ABC Radio Brisbane Statewide Evenings program – Chatted with Trevor Jackson about the changes needed to make renting more affordable and secure in Australia. Listen here (from 23’45”) (20/4/17).

Interview – ABC 702 Evenings program – Chat with James O’Loghlin about the challenges renters face finding pet-friendly rental properties.

Interview – ABC 891 Adelaide – About the health and social benefits of pets, and pets in apartments.

Interview – ABC Newcastle Evenings program – About how people live with native wildlife that cohabits their home.

Interview – 666 Canberra Drive program – About pet-friendly apartment policy and design

Interview – ABC Tropical North 12.30pm News – About how councils and developers could create a better sense of community by building more pet-friendly units.

612 ABC Brisbane – Kieran Clair, Editor, Australian Property Investor discusses my research: challenges renters with pets face finding rental properties

2ueJimmy Thomson ( discusses the Renting with Pets research.

2gbInterview – About finding pet friendly rentals, and the ways that pets help to build a sense of community


Interviews and reporting from the ‘Housing security’ project 


Older female renters are the ‘canary in the coal mine’ for housing affordability. “The women I’ve researched have had difficulties paying their electricity costs, maintaining heating and cooling,” Dr Power said. “They’ve had difficulties being able to afford food and are dependent on charities like food kitchens and banks in their local neighbourhood. These issues are going to be more widespread in Australia over time unless we do something urgently to tackle the issue.”


Running out of time with nowhere to go.Dr Emma Power, from the University of Western Sydney, has been researching older, assetpoor women in the private rental market since 2016. She said they are at particular risk of housing insecurity and homelessness…”

The Fifth Estate

Census reveals the consequences of a growing housing affordability crisis. “Dr Emma Power added that Australians were also paying higher rents, with median household rent increasing at a greater rate than median personal income.” Read more.


Few measures in budget to help renters. 

Budget 2017’s housing affordability plans likely won’t have major impact.

Tenants Union

The Landlord’s budget. “It’s been dubbed the Budget that forgot the renters.”, Tenants Union of NSW Blog. 

Border mail

Interview – Housing investment plea. “We do actually need to see government committing to this and not just relying on the private market to provide housing,” said Dr Power

Interview – Social Housing Scant. “Dr Emma Power said it was clear that housing affordability was having a significant impact on the rising rate of homelessness.”

Interviews and reporting from the ‘Renting with Pets’ project


Renting with Pets: A guide for tenants Renting with Pets, Australian Veterinary Association and Australian Companion Animals Council. 

Tenants with Pets: A guide for Landlords and Managing Agents, Australian Veterinary Association and Australian Companion Animals Council. 


Interview – You Can Now Woo Future Landlords With Your Pet’s Resume. 

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Interview – Scratching the anti-pet clause: Why are landlords so reluctant to rent to pet-lovers. About why it is difficult for renters with pets to find pet-friendly rental properties.


Interview – Pet friendly rentals have an advantage. About the challenges renters face finding pet-friendly properties.

Small animal talk.pngInterview – Living with pets: interview with Dr Emma Power. About my research background and renting with pets research.


Groundbreaking study about pets and renters, About how moving house can lead to renters giving up their pets.


Interview – Renting with a pet, About the challenges renters face finding pet-friendly properties, and the connection between renting and pet relinquishment.

Interview – Tenants and pets: the truth is out there. About my renting with pets research.

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Interview – A dog’s life for renters: tenants battle to keep pets – About the stresses that pet owners face trying to find pet friendly properties.

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and syndicated across: Parramatta City Star, Liverpool Champion, Campbelltown-Macarthur Advertiser, Camden Advertiser, Fairfield City Champion, Hills News, St Mary’s Star, Blacktown Sun, Northern News.

Interview – Pet research – About my new research ‘renting with pets’ and why it is difficult for pet owners to find pet-friendly rental properties.


Interviews and reporting from the Pets in Apartments project


Interview – Pet project for high-rise living: New bylaws propose making it easier to keep pets in apartments. About proposed changes in NSW Strata law to allow pets to live in apartment buildings, and the social benefits that pets can bring in neighbourhoods.


Interview – On the way to the top: Families are opting for the convenience of apartment living. About the trend towards families considering apartment living.


Interview – Planning for pet-friendly strata. About how dogs help to build a sense of community in apartments and neighbourhoods.

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Interview – Pet Owners Unite! – About the need for pet-friendly apartments.

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Interview – Flats with bang for their buck: Cashing in on demand for pet-friendly apartments. About growing trend for pet-friendly apartments and the benefits dogs can bring for sense of community.

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Interview – Wanted: Dog Lovers. About the social benefits of pets, and my research about pets in apartments.

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Interview – Apartment living in a dog-eat-dog world. About how dogs contribute to sense of community in apartment buildings.

Sunday Telegraph.jpgInterviewPet-friendly property on the rise. About the trend towards pet-friendly apartments.


InterviewDog ban paw for high life


InterviewPet-friendly property on the rise

North Shore Times

InterviewPuppy love good for unit dwellers

Real Estate Journal

Interview – Pets boost strata communities: research shows pets can promote more than good health, they can benefit Owners Corporations and agents too.

Redland News, Brisbane

Interview – Push for high-rise households.

Parramatta Sun

InterviewCarefully count cost of owning high-rise hound

InterviewStudy weights up benefits of dogs in high rise places

Penrith City Star

InterviewThings are looking up for dogs

Street Corner

InterviewSky high puppies: Research to explore the lives of four-legged friends in high-rise homes

Campus Daily News

InterviewSky High Puppies: Research to explore the lives of our four-legged friends in high-rise homes.

Sunday Examiner

InterviewPet properties on the rise

Yahoo! News Australia

InterviewApartment living in a dog-eat-dog world


Interviews and reporting about wildlife in the home research

Northern District Times

Interview – Mixed feelings on night’s furry visitors, About how people make their homes around wildlife and other animals.

North Shore Times

Interview – It’s our home, our castle and our possums. About how living with native animals shapes people’s Australian identity.

Canberra Times

Byte sized – About how living with possums impacts people’s sense of home and identity