Spotlight on crisis mitigation at engineering conference

Published 15 February 2018
Jeremy Novak Jeremy Novak

Southern Cross University will host an industry-first Engineering and Asset Management briefing series starting on Monday, February 19 on the Gold Coast.

World-leading experts and industry leaders from Japan, USA and Australia will converge to share insights of the issues and potential solutions at the University’s Gold Coast campus, conveniently located next to the Gold Coast Airport.

This first event in the four-part series will focus on how to manage organisations in adverse conditions including natural and human-induced crises and disasters events.

Dr Jeremy Novak, Course Coordinator for the Master of Engineering Management and MBA Program at Southern Cross, said the free event would provide a platform for the sharing of ideas and issues.

“The aim of the Industry Briefing Series is to bring together industry, government, and academia to discuss contemporary issues organisations face and determine practical solutions to real-world problems that add strategic value,” Dr Novak said.

“This is an important area of discussion because critical infrastructure and asset organisations are vital to our communities and way of life, so their ongoing management in adverse conditions is imperative.

“You do not have to look far to see the ongoing impact that crises and disasters events have on communities and people. Take the Deepwater Horizon oil rig disaster, for example, or the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the 2017 floods in the Northern Rivers region of NSW, even the recent series of thunder storms across South East Queensland which cut more than 500 power lines, leaving more than 50,000 homes and businesses without power.

“One workshop will focus on discussing transport and logistics in crisis events such as storms, flooding and adverse conditions. The second workshop will focus on adaption, resilience, safety management and the human factor in organisations.”

Dr Novak has more than 30 years’ experience in the critical infrastructure and asset management arena, where he has consulted to governments and business in Australia and overseas and has been invited to speak at numerous world congresses.

His PhD research centred on crisis and disaster management, resilience, and adaptation in this sector where he developed a new and comprehensive non-structural mitigation model to assist organisations. His research team was recently published in the prestigious journal Reliability Engineering & System Safety with the paper ‘Safety outcomes for engineering asset management organizations: old problem with new solutions?’

Dr Novak said the event would be ideal for company directors, CEOs, engineering and asset managers, maintenance managers, owners of small to medium-sized enterprise (SME), government representatives and managers of hospitals, airports and real estate.

The topical discussions will cover geographical locations including Gold Coast, Tweed Shire, Beaudesert, Logan, Scenic Rim, Lismore and the Northern Rivers.

The conference on ‘Managing Organisations in Adverse Conditions’ will be held 9.30am to 1pm (QLD time) on Monday, February 19 at Southern Cross University Gold Coast campus, Southern Cross Drive, Bilinga.  Attendance and parking is free of charge.

Register here:

The next workshop ‘Managing the Human Factor’ will be held later in the year.

Media contact: Jessica Nelson 0417288794