Dr Thomas Sigler

Snr Lecturer in Human Geography

School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Faculty of Science
t.sigler@uq.edu.au
+61 7 336 53804

Overview

I am an economic and urban geographer interested in (a) how globalisation shapes cities, and (b) how cities and urban space are shaped by globalisation. The first of these themes focusses on ‘the global economy’ and how various firms, institutions, and industries are distributed across space. This incorporates both existing geographies as well as change over time, as the shifting global economy has dynamic consequences. The second of these focusses more concretely on cities and the dynamics within them. I supervise a broad range of MPhil and Phd projects, and have active collaborations with partners in Australia, North America, Europe, and East Asia.

My specific interests fall into the following three areas:

1. The Sharing Economy, which has been popularised by platforms such as Uber and Airbnb. Little has been done internationally from a geographical perspective, and I am interested in its various facets, including mobility, transport, housing, and space-sharing (parking, office space, etc). This body has specific policy implications for cities, including Brisbane, which aim to position themselves as ‘knowledge-based’, ‘creative’, ‘innovative’ and ‘smart’ cities through spatial planning and economic initiatives. I currently supervise two PhDs in this area (Sirat Mahmuda, Robert Sobyra) and several more at the Master's and Honours level.

2. Land Use Change and Housing, with a focus on the interrelated processes of gentrification, suburbanisation, property investment, migration, and urban renewal. I am particularly interested in changing urban spatial structure with regard to macroeconomic, and specifically post-industrial, shifts that are occurring in cities around the world. I currently supervise three RHD students in this area (Ayodeji Adeniyi, Rachel Gallagher, Jeff Humphreys), and am interested in continuing my work on global property markets.

3. Global networks, with a focus on the diverse socio-economic connections between the world’s cities. This research theme combines network science, economic geography, and urban studies. Work in this space has been popularised through the ‘world cities’ literature, which has been widely adopted in policy circles (e.g. ‘Brisbane: Australia’s New World City’) as a catchphrase indicating international commercial connectivity. This work is supported through an ARC Discovery project grant in conjunction with the University of Western Australia and Ghent University.

Research Interests

  • Global Cities
  • Sharing Economy
  • Economic Globalisation
  • Urban Morphology

Research Impacts

My work focusses on understanding the nature of contemporary urbanisation. I have published in a wide range of academic journals, including Urban Geography, Environment and Planning A, Urban Studies, Regional Studies, Journal of Geography, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research (IJURR), and the Bulletin of Latin American Research.

Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Southern California
  • Master of Science, Pennsylvania State University
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Pennsylvania State University

Publications

View all Publications

Supervision

  • Master Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision

Available Projects

  • Uber, Airbnb and other digital applications have revolutionised the way we go about our daily lives. These 'disruptive' platforms have made it now possible to move from city to city using a handful of apps to seamlessly acquire a range of goods and services from one's phone using common digital payment systems. This has widespread implications for logistics, organised labour, job skilling, product delivery, and more. Students interested in this topic are welcome to work on a range of related topics, both theoretical and empirical, using data from one or more digital application or source. This project is available to potential PhD, MPhil, and Hons students.

View all Available Projects

Publications

Featured Publications

Book Chapter

  • Martinus, Kirsten and Sigler, Thomas (2016). Boomtown globalising: Perth as an international connected resource hub. In Sharon Biermann, Doina Olaru and Valerià Paül (Ed.), Planning boomtown and beyond (pp. 27-42) Perth, WA, Australia: UWA Publishing.

  • Albandoz, Roberto, Brothers, Tim, Dixon, Seth, Escamilla, Irma, Scarpaci, Joseph L. and Sigler, Thomas (2016). Cities of middle America and the Caribbean. In Stanley D. Brunn, Jessica K. Graybill, Maureen Hays-Mitchell and Donald J. Zeigler (Ed.), Cities of the world: regional patterns and urban environments 6th edition ed. (pp. 97-135) Lanham, MD, United States: Rowman & Littlefield.

  • Sigler, Thomas J. and Zhao, Simon X. B. (2016). Hong Kong as an offshore trading hub. In Bart Lambregts, Niels Beerepoot and Robert C. Kloosterman (Ed.), The local impact of globalization in South and Southeast Asia: offshore business processes in services (pp. 94-109) Abingdon, United Kingdom: Routledge.

  • Tang, Angelina Zhi Rou, Rowe, Francisco, Corcoran, Jonathan and Sigler, Thomas (2016). Spatial mobility patterns of overseas graduates in Australia. In Tom Wilson, Elin Charles-Edwards and Martin Bell (Ed.), Demography for planning and policy: Australian case studies (pp. 175-195) Cham, Switzerland: Springer. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-22135-9_10

Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Sigler, Thomas , Parker, Ben and Martinus, Kirsten (2018). The Corporate Geography of Australian Cities: Tracking change in ASX-Listed Firm Headquarters in Australian Cities, 2013-2016. In: Proceedings of the State of Australian Cities National Conference. State of Australian Cities, Adelaide, Australia, (). 28-30 November 2017. doi:10.4225/50/5b2c7669935c7

  • Wei, Ming, Liu, Yan and Sigler, Thomas J. (2015). An exploratory analysis of Brisbane’s commuter travel patterns using smart card data. In: Paul Burton and Heather Shearer, State of Australian Cities National Conference 2015: Refereed Proceedings. State of Australian Cities National Conference, Gold Coast, QLD, Australia, (). 9-11 December 2015.

  • Holz, Jessica L. and Sigler, Thomas J. (2015). Green urbanism in Australia: an evaluation of green building rating schemes. In: Paul Burton and Heather Shearer, State of Australian Cities National Conference 2015: Refereed Proceedings. State of Australian Cities National Conference, Gold Coast, QLD, Australia, (). 9-11 December 2015.

  • Sigler, Thomas (2015). One City, Many Networks: Brisbane’s Global Position within Multiple Flows. In: Paul Burton and Heather Shearer, State of Australian Cities Conference 2015: Refereed Proceedings. State of Australian Cities Conference, Gold Coast, Australia, (). 9-11 December 2015.

  • Sigler, Thomas (2013). Corporate clustering in Australian cities: an analysis of the geographic distribution of ASX-listed headquarters. In: Kristian Ruming, Bill Randolph and Nicole Gurran, State of Australian Cities Conference 2013: Refereed Proceedings. SOAC 2013: 6th State of Australian Cities Conference, Sydney, NSW, Australia, (1-12). 26-29 November, 2013.

  • Sigler, Thomas (2012). Globalising Australian cities: an overview. In: Paul Dalziel, Refrereed Proceedings of the 36th Annual Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Regional Science Association International. 36th Annual Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Regional Science Association International (ANZRSAI), Wollongong, NSW, Australia, (259-272). 5-7 December 2012.

Edited Outputs

Other Outputs

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Master Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

Possible Research Projects

Note for students: The possible research projects listed on this page may not be comprehensive or up to date. Always feel free to contact the staff for more information, and also with your own research ideas.

  • Uber, Airbnb and other digital applications have revolutionised the way we go about our daily lives. These 'disruptive' platforms have made it now possible to move from city to city using a handful of apps to seamlessly acquire a range of goods and services from one's phone using common digital payment systems. This has widespread implications for logistics, organised labour, job skilling, product delivery, and more. Students interested in this topic are welcome to work on a range of related topics, both theoretical and empirical, using data from one or more digital application or source. This project is available to potential PhD, MPhil, and Hons students.