Trying to make a difference – and why sometimes we can’t

2016 AGS Practitioner Award

Rob Day

Engineering as a profession, particularly in the area of public infrastructure, has the power to make a huge difference to the wellbeing and happiness of millions of people. Occasionally however, obstacles are put in our way that prevent us from achieving the best outcome for the maximum number of people with the resources we have available. Rob will share examples he has seen in a career that stared back in the 1980’s, where obstacles have stood in the way of making a difference. It is hoped that this may provoke discussion, and possibly help others avoid these pitfalls in the future.

About the speaker

Rob Day Associate Principal, Arup

For more than 30 years Rob has worked on major projects around Australia and around the world, delivering geotechnical and groundwater solutions for major road, rail and tunnelling projects. He has developed strong geotechnical investigation, design and managerial skills, and has an extensive knowledge of the geology and geotechnical issues around Melbourne. Throughout his career he has remained an active Australian Geomechanics Society, serving on both the Queensland and Victorian Chapter committees, as well as regularly presenting to Chapters and at Conferences.

It is the ongoing support of members such as Rob that provide the life-blood of the Australian Geomechanics Society, and this was recognised at a National level when he was awarded the 2016 AGS Practitioner Award. The Practitioner Award recognises contributions of the highest order over an extended period, with a commitment to the geotechnical profession in Australia and to the Australian Geomechanics Society.

The Board of the College of Civil Engineers of Engineers Australia has also recognised the contribution Rob has made more broadly to the Civil Engineering industry, presenting him with the Sir John Holland Civil Engineer of the Year 2018. The award provides recognition to an outstanding individual with exceptional leadership skills, technical skills combined with a commitment to service the community and sustainable development in engineering.

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