Understanding the cumulative impacts in our natural resource consumption and management, has important long-term consequences for Australia’s economic, societal and environmental health. Yet many decisions and policies are based on limited amounts of data and rudimentary data analysis, with little appreciation of the critical role that understanding and quantifying uncertainty plays in the process.
The ARC Industrial Transformation Training Centre for Data Analytics for Resources and Environments (DARE) will develop and deliver the data science skills and tools for Australia’s natural resource industries and managers; to be expert users of data and models; to quantify, explain and understand uncertainty; and to make the best possible evidence-based decisions in exploiting and stewarding the nations’ natural resources and environment.
The DARE Centre is a collaborative research centre led by the University of Sydney in partnership with the University of New South Wales and the University of Western Australia and funded under a five-year grant from the Australian Research Council in partnership with industry and government. Our Partner Organisations represent some of Australia’s leading organisations directly involved in natural resource use and management.
In addition, the DARE Centre is collaborating with the UK’s leading data science organisation, the Alan Turing Institute to ensure students have access to the world’s best practice data science, including the opportunity to participate in an exchange program in the UK.
Led by Professor Willem Vervoort, the DARE Centre will train PhD candidates in world leading data science through an innovative, collaborative program between industry, government and academia. All students will undertake a cohort-based training program in data science prior to selecting a specific data science project and domain. Data science research projects will be applied against real world challenges through an industry placement program with one of our Partner Organisations.
PhD’s will take place over a three to four-year period including one year on secondment with a Partner Organisation. The DARE Centre will support linkages between industry and academia through industrial training opportunities for higher degree researchers.
The DARE Centre will be supported by an exemplar advisory board of industry, government and academic leaders. The Advisory Board will ensure that the Centre considers key current and emerging issues, delivers economic value for Australia and maintains a strong strategic focus.
A quantitative psychologist by background, Professor Pattison began her academic career at the University of Melbourne. She served in a number of academic leadership roles at the University of Melbourne, including president of its Academic Board from 2007-2008 and Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) from 2011-2014 before taking up the role in 2014 of Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education at the University of Sydney. During her term, Pip led the University’s strategy for learning and teaching, with a major focus on transformation of the undergraduate curriculum, the student experience and new approaches to postgraduate education and microcredentials. Pip retired from the role at the end of 2021.
The primary focus of Professor Pattison’s research is the development and application of mathematical and statistical models for social networks and network processes. Applications have included the transmission of infectious diseases, the evolution of the biotechnology industry in Australia, and community recovery following bushfire.
Professor Pattison was elected a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia in 1995 and of the Royal Society of NSW in 2017.
Professor Pattison was named on the Queen’s Birthday 2015 Honours List as an Officer of the Order of Australia for distinguished service to higher education, particularly through contributions to the study of social network modelling, analysis and theory, and to university leadership and administration.
Elisabetta is a principal research scientist and is currently responsible for shaping the Bureau of Meteorology’s Hydrology Science Section and with integrating hydrology in a whole of Earth System Modelling.
In her previous role, as Groundwater Manager, she was charged with creating a vision and strategy for the Bureau’s role in the groundwater information arena and ensuring widespread access to nationally consistent groundwater information. This led to the Bureau awarding her the Excellence Award for outstanding dedication, commitment and performance in leading the Bureau’s groundwater information efforts. Elisabetta believes that transparent, timely and high-quality information supported by strategically focused research improves decision-making about our water resources and creates a sustainable environment.
Previously she was a physical limnologist at the Institute for Ecosystem Studies – Italian National Research Council – studying the effects of climate change on deep lakes’ heat content. Elisabetta holds a PhD from the University of Melbourne in Hydrogeochemistry. She is a member of the National Groundwater Sub Committee and a Fellow of the Peter Cullen Water and Environment Trust.
Chris Gentle is currently the Program Director, Information Management at the Western Australia Biodiversity Science Institute. Chris has over twenty years’ experience consulting at a strategic level within the information management industry for natural resources and government sectors. He has specialised knowledge in developing and implementing location-intelligence strategies and leading ICT strategy and implementation planning for resource infrastructure capital projects. Chris has a focus on customer outcomes with his multi-disciplinary expertise gained through years of working in the data management and systems as well as the engineering services industry.
Chris holds a Bachelor of Science from The University of Western Australia, a Graduate Diploma in Technology Management and an M.B.A. from La Trobe University.
Milan is currently a Partner in McKinsey’s office in Melbourne leading advanced analytics in heavy industry for QuantumBlack and McKinsey globally.
Milan has a deep expertise in data science and chemical engineering with 20 years of experience in the process industries with emphasis on predictive analytics, process optimisation and process control. He is also leading collaboration with Universities and is an Adjunct Professor at the Faculty of Computer Science at the University of Sydney (Centre for advanced data science).
Prior to joining McKinsey, Milan was a head of development and implementation of automation systems combining state-of-the-art process control technologies with advanced analytics.
Milan received his PhD from the department of chemical engineering at The University of Montréal with his thesis focusing on developing innovative technology that assists industries with transforming their data into actionable insights and deep operational intelligence. He also holds MSc and BS in chemical engineering (data-driven modelling) from the University of Technology in Bratislava (Slovakia).
Dr Ian Oppermann is the NSW Government’s Chief Data Scientist working within the Department of Customer Service. He is also an Industry Professor at the University of Technology Sydney. From 2015 to 2019, Ian was also the CEO of the NSW Data Analytics Center (DAC). Ian has nearly 30 years’ experience in the ICT sector and, has led organizations with more than 300 people, delivering products and outcomes that have impacted hundreds of millions of people globally.
Dr Susan Pond AM, FRSN FTSE FAHMS is an experienced leader in business & academia, recognised for her national & international contributions in science, technology and medicine. Currently, she serves as Chair of the New South Wales Smart Sensing Network, Vice-President of the Royal Society of NSW, Governor in Council Member of the Queensland University of Technology, Non-Executive Director of the Trusted Autonomous Systems for Defence Cooperative Research Centre, Biotron Limited, Vectus Biosystems Limited, Cannatrek Limited and the Australian Phenomics Network, and Adjunct Professor in the Faculty of Engineering & Information Technologies at The University of Sydney. Most recently, Dr Pond was Director of Sydney Nano, a multidisciplinary institution at The University of Sydney from 2017-2018.
Gavin is a transformational technology leader with over 25 years of experience in the IT industry, holding senior roles in the Mining, Infrastructure, and Retail sectors. He has a long history in innovating with technology and creating significant value for his employers. In his most recent role as the Chief Information Officer at Newcrest Mining, Gavin and his team built a set of industry leading IT and Digital capabilities that were applied to improve safety and profitability at Newcrest. These include the award-winning AI, IoT, Newcrest Crowd, and SAP Cloud platforms.