What is next for Australia’s water industry?

Posted 15 May 2017

Ozwater KeynoteAustralia’s water professionals are converging tonight in Sydney for the largest water conference this side of the equator. 

Things start on a high note with keynote sessions from former managing director for Pandora Australia and New Zealand Jane Huxley; futurist, biomedical engineer and founder of Psykinetic Dr Jordan Nguyen; and Sydney Water Managing Director Kevin Young

All three bring a diverse range of experiences to this year’s conference theme of innovation and disruption. 

Jane Huxley: Digital disruption


Huxley has spent most of her professional life working in industries that have faced massive disruption. She cut her teeth as the CEO and publisher for Fairfax Media’s digital division, where she helped the team transition to a digital-based business.

Since then she has held several senior positions with companies such as Microsoft, Vodafone and Earth Hour before moving to internet radio service Pandora. Her track record with helping traditional industries such as telcos, media, technology and radio transition to the digital age means she has valuable insights for delegates who want to help the water industry do the same.  

Dr Jordan Nguyen: Intersections of tech and humanity


How will technology supplement the human experience? What are the challenges and opportunities in our quickly changing world that technology can help solve? And how do these apply to the water industry? 

Nguyen’s session will answer these questions. After almost breaking his neck years ago, Nguyen began designing intelligent, futuristic and inclusive technologies. His most famous development is a mind-controlled smart wheelchair for people with high-level disability, but his body of work is of interest to anyone who is curious about the intersections between technology and humanity. 

Kevin Young: Customer experience in the water industry


Young’s experience as a water professional runs the gamut of private sector and government authorities within Australia and overseas. His degrees in engineering and business administration provide him with a unique mix of technical ability and commercial nous. 

As the managing director of Sydney Water, he is credited with helping steer the organisation through key strategic reforms to better provide its 5 million customers with better water solutions at a great value. This move underlies a trend in the water industry. Utilities are starting to become more than just water providers – they are moving from plumbers to planners and becoming integral parts of the communities they serve. 

All together, these three presentations are sure to provide delegates with new insights into their own work, and spark fresh thinking to confront the ongoing challenges this industry faces.

Don’t miss a thing – download the full Day One Program, or view our program highlights here