2017 Stormwater Victoria Conference

Keynote Speakers


Haydn Read

Haydn has nearly 20 years international experience in manufacturing and operations management, predominantly as a senior executive in the steel industry. He returned to New Zealand in 2007 to where the last decade and has managed large infrastructure portfolios, and in particular the strategic asset management planning and investment functions in Wellington City. In 2014 he took up an opportunity to take the Programme Director lead for NZ Treasury funded NZ Asset Metadata (shared data) Standards and Smart Cities Programmes. More recently he has accepted the role as the Head of Infrastructure Programmes at Auckland Council.

In more recent times his interest has been within smart ICT in infrastructure and the possibilities inherent in new technologies, big data, analytics and evidence-based investment decisions in public infrastructure. His application of these technologies have provided the capacity to transform the design, construction and management of infrastructure assets; the management and use of existing assets; and the operations of transportation networks, water utilities, energy providers, and associated built environments. His experiences with these technologies have been transformational.

Haydn has a Master's of Science from Auckland University, an MBA in international Business and Finance from Melbourne, and currently working towards a PhD at Victoria University's School of Government. The working title of his thesis is "Decision-making in Local Government - what influences elected member decisions in large infrastructure investments?"


Dr Briony Rogers

Dr Briony Rogers is a Senior Lecturer with Monash University's School of Social Sciences. Her research brings a social science lens to infrastructural and environmental challenges, exploring processes of change across communities, organisations, institutions and sectors to enable transitions towards future liveable cities that are sustainable and resilient. She has a particular focus on an empirical context of urban water, working across the Australian water sector and more recently in Indonesia. Briony has an interdisciplinary background, with a PhD in Environmental Sociology, a Bachelor of Civil Engineering (Honours) and Bachelor of Science, as well as experience as an engineering consultant on water infrastructure projects in Australia and Vietnam. Briony was selected by the International Social Science Council as one of twenty World Social Science Fellows in the area of sustainable urbanisation. She is an Associate Director of the Monash Water for Liveability Centre, leads social research with the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities, and co-chairs the International Working Group on Water Sensitive Urban Design.


Michael Groom

A professional mountaineer and speaker, Michael Groom's story of how he overcame severe challenges to climb the world's largest mountains is truly inspiring.

In 1987 Michael became the first Australian to climb Kangchenjunga, the world's third highest mountain, without the use of bottled oxygen or Sherpa support. However when descending the mountain, Michael became temporarily blinded and was forced to spend the night exposed to the elements at above 8000m. Michael suffered serious frostbite, resulting in a third of both his feed being amputated. He was told he would never walk again.

Facing life in a wheelchair, Michael applied sheer will and determination to learn to walk again. Three years later he successfully climbed Cho Oyu, the world's sixth highest mountain. In 1996 Michael joined Rob Hall's calamitous Mt Everest attempt in which eight climbers died. Of all those who reached the summit, only Michael and Into Thin Air author, Jon Krakauer, survived.

Michael went to become the first Australian to reach the top of the world's five most challenging mountains; Everest, K2, Kangchenjunga, Lhotse and Makalu.

In 2000 Michael's remarkable story was made into a documentary by the Australian Film Corporation. His book Sheer Will, published in 1997 and updated in 1999 and 2000, is a can't-put-down read.

Dr Stuart Field

Dr Stuart Field is a Principal Policy Officer with the Office of the Director General at the Department of Parks and Wildlife in Western Australia. His background as a research scientist in the field of environmental impact and recovery, principally in the tropical marine environment, has led to his present role managing a number of research and management programs for the Department across the NW of Western Australia. As Node Leader for the Kimberley Marine Research Program he is leading an integrated multi institutional approach to research in the Kimberley to inform conservation management of a new system of marine reserves in the region.  An essential component of this process is the exploration of synergies between western and indigenous science to support conservation management of this marine reserve system. His work with the oil and gas sector in Western Australia is also working towards the incorporation of indigenous science into environmental impact minimisation and emergency response planning to ensure protection of natural and cultural heritage values of the marine and coastal environments. Working closely with indigenous groups is enabling positive outcomes for the integration of indigenous science into conservation management of the state.


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