There’s much excitement building around next month’s Australian Engineering Conference in Sydney 17-19 September. Engineers Australia President Trish White and CEO Peter McIntyre pick out some of this year’s highlights.
The three-day Australian Engineering Conference (AEC) boasts a fascinating array of topics covering innovation, infrastructure and AI among many others. A line-up of some of the world’s leading engineering professionals will offer invaluable insights into how our industry will transform in the years ahead.
International leaders in their respective fields include Michael McAllum from Global Foresight, Tim Chapman, leader of Arup’s Infrastructure design group in London, and Aurecon Global Director Maureen Thurston.
Accelerating technological change is dramatically changing the way we work and live. Smart homes are already part of an increasing numbers of people’s lives, driverless cars are here and automation is radically shifting the way we work.
The AEC will also shine a light on what successful engineering design and infrastructure for future cities looks like. Richard Palmer, Director of Sustainability at WSP and AEC speaker, believes strengthening resilience today is a prerequisite for achieving sustainable cities in the future.
He argues that for cities, sustainability doesn’t mean just going green – it means staying agile, preparing for turbulence and adapting to changing times.
“It’s about embedding the climate resilience aspect. Understanding future risks and designing for them is an obvious first step,” he said.
The conference will tackle the impacts of engineering challenges, from the ethics and limits of artificial intelligence to the role of robots in our daily lives and real applications of emerging technologies.
“It will become a greater requirement for educators of people working in software engineering or computer engineering to create a real understanding of the impacts – ethically, socially, environmentally – of the designs they create,” said Conference speaker and Dean of the Faculty of Engineering at Monash University Professor Elizabeth Croft.
“We’ll need professionals interested in public policy and engineers with a strong ethical framework. Engineers are creating the future of technology. We are the ones who first see the potential impacts. If we don’t prepare our people for that, we’ll see unintended consequences of the technology.”
The AEC will focus on how individuals and businesses can prepare for the next wave of opportunities and get ahead of digital disruption trends by understanding upcoming technologies. How can engineers future-proof their career in the face of these changes?
And it won’t just be presenters speaking in isolation – there are also sessions open for direct debate and questions. The conference agenda includes a pitching session to crowdsource Australia’s next big infrastructure ideas and opportunity to ask an astronaut, aboard the International Space Station, about life in space.
There are also offsite technical forums to view some of Sydney’s most iconic and ambitious engineering projects.
To register to attend the Australian Engineering Conference, click here.
We look forward to seeing you there!