Sydney and Toronto are growing both in population and economic activity, and are increasingly thinking about themselves as global cities. Not in the ‘top six’ of London, Paris, New York, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore but just outside this group. Interesting (to me at least!) that similar discussions on the metropolitan futures of each are taking place in each city next week. The Munk School of Global Affairs are hosting this event on Toronto as an ‘accidental metropolis’ – “Toronto is evolving with a style and character unique in the world, widely recognized for its livability. Now its economic power and its critical and largely successful function as a crucible of immigrant settlement is becoming more and more evident. Remarkably, the emergence of Canada’s cities on the world stage, and Toronto’s rise to the top dozen in global status, has been largely accidental. How did this happen?” The following day, on the other side of the world, Arup and Western Sydney University have a discussion on ‘Leadership in the Metropolitan Century’. As both events demonstrate, governance and leadership are a crucial part of the global cities debate.