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Construction Industry: Demolishing gender structures

Construction Industry: Demolishing gender structure

The construction industry is the most male-dominated sector in Australia: women represent only 12% of the workforce. Join us to find out more about the practices that undermine women’s advancement in the construction industry.
At this event the research team will present findings from a major research project about gender equality in the construction industry. The Australian Sex Discrimination Commissioner, Kate Jenkins, will launch the findings, which outline key challenges in implementing strategies at the coalface to attract, retain and support the progression of women in large construction companies and highlight new approaches for achieving gender equality in the sector.
The event will also include a panel discussion examining potential solutions from a range of perspectives, including working women, senior management and human resources. Our panellists include Stephanie Graham, a Senior Project Manager, Lendlease Building; Jenny McAuliffe, Head of People at Australian Rail Track Corporation; David Ghannoum, Regional Managing Director, Multiplex and Dale Connor, Managing Director, Lendlease Building.
Professor Helen Lochhead, Dean of UNSW Built Environment, will provide her views on the education pipeline.
This research was supported by the Australian Research Council, the Australian Human Rights Commission, Diversity Council Australia and construction companies.
Date: Wednesday 7 December 2016
Venue: Australian Human Rights Commission, Level 3, 175 Pitt Street Sydney
Time: 09.30am to 11.30am


Kate Jenkins
Sex Discrimination Commissioner
Kate Jenkins became Australia’s Sex Discrimination Commissioner earlier this year, after 3 years as the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commissioner. In that role she held an Independent Review into Sex Discrimination and Sexual Harassment, including Predatory Behaviour, in Victoria Police. She was also the Co-Chair of the Victorian Commission’s Disability Reference Group and a member of the Aboriginal Justice Forum.
Kate will be leading the Commission’s work on sexual harassment and assault in university settings, and the Commission’s collaborative project on cultural reform with the Australian Defence Force.
Kate is the convener of the Victorian Male Champions of Change group, and the Co-Chair of Play by the Rules, a joint project between human rights agencies and sports commissions to make grass roots sports safe, fair and inclusive.
Kate spent 20 years as lead partner with Herbert Smith Freehills’ and 15 years on the board of Berry Street Victoria.
The Arts/Law honours graduate is on the boards of the Heide Museum of Modern Art and the Carlton Football Club.
Kate was recognised in the 2015 AFR/Westpac 100 Women of Influence Awards for her work in public policy.
Kate grew up on a family orchard in outer Melbourne. She lives Melbourne with her family, which includes her husband Ken, their 2 children and her 3 stepchildren.
Professor Helen Lochhead
Dean, UNSW Built Environment 
Professor Helen Lochhead is an Australian architect, urban and landscape designer.
Prior to her appointment as Dean she held a number of influential positions in the NSW Government and the City of Sydney including including Executive Director roles at Sydney Olympic Park Authority and Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority, and was most recently deputy NSW Government Architect.  
Her career has focused on the inception, planning, design and delivery of complex multidisciplinary projects and public works ranging from a 5-year city improvements program for the City of Sydney leading up to the 2000 Olympics to major urban renewal and waterfront projects. She has been instrumental in shaping more major precincts around Sydney Harbour than most, including the transformation of Sydney Olympic Park at Homebush Bay from a sports precinct into a mixed-use community and parklands with environmental credentials that set new benchmarks. More recently she led the development of 30-year plan for the transformation of Sydney Cove, the gateway to Sydney’s CBD and was instrumental in setting a new strategic vision for Sydney Harbour.
Professor Lochhead maintains a high profile in the profession and her professional contribution has been recognized through many industry awards including AIA and AILA Urban Design and Sustainability Awards, the AIA Marion Mahony Griffin Prize, the NAWIC Vision Award for leadership in the construction industry and the AIA NSW President’s Prize.
High level appointments include the National Council of the Australian Institute of Architects, Central Sydney Planning Committee, the ACT Planning and Land Council, the NSW Heritage Council and competition juries and Design Review Panels across Australia. All are a testament to her standing in the profession.
A graduate of both the University of Sydney and Columbia University in New York Professor Lochhead’s career has combined professional practice and teaching both in Australia and the United States, as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Sydney and also as visiting academic at Harvard, MIT and Columbia Universities. In 2014-15 she was also the Lincoln/Loeb Fellow at the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University and the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy.
Dale Connor
Managing Director, Building, Lendlease 
Dale has wide-spread experience in project management and construction, as well as design and privatization. He has worked extensively in the construction industry across Australia, the United Kingdom, China and the United States and believes that working incident and injury free is a key principle to Lendlease's success.Dale holds a Civil Engineering Degree from the University of Queensland, and is a member of the Association of Defence Communities and the Urban Land Institute.


David Ghannoum
Regional Managing Director, Multiplex
David Ghannoum joined Multiplex in 1989 and was appointed Regional Managing Director in 2007. During his 9 years as Regional Managing Director, David has held responsibility for the operational performance of all projects in NSW and led the business’ expansion into new sectors including health, retail and education. He has presided over the delivery of many high-profile projects including the redevelopment of 161 Sussex Street and The Star  Casino in Darling Harbour.  He is currently leading project teams on the delivery of 14 projects including the two mixed-used residential buildings that complete Central Park and a redevelopment that will transform Wynyard Place.  
David sits on the Australian Executive board for Multiplex Australia and is on both the Executive Board of the Urban Taskforce and Master Builders Australia. David holds a Bachelor of Engineering Degree (Civil) from the University of Technology, Sydney.
Jenny McAuliffe
Head of People, Australian Rail Track Corporation 
Jenny is Executive General Manager People at ARTC with responsibility for:
• Corporate human resources and employee relations
• Industrial relations framework
• Workers compensation and rehabilitation
• Structural change management
Jenny joined ARTC in 2004 as Manager Human Resources and since that time has been actively involved in key employee relations initiatives within the business and has successfully managed major structural changes.
She has more than 20 years of experience in industrial relations and human resource management and her previous roles have included Manager, Industrial Relations, Rail Infrastructure Corporation and Director of Industrial Relations, Australian Medical Association (South Australia).
She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors as well as being secretary of ARTC’s People Policy and Remuneration Board Sub-Committee and is a member of the Executive and People Committees.
Additionally, in May 2016 Jenny took on the newly-created role of Chairman of the South Australian Committee for NAWO (National Association of Women in Operations).
Stephanie Graham
Senior Project Manager, Lendlease Building

After studying Architecture at Sydney University, Stephanie joined Lendlease in their graduate programme and began her career as a Site Engineer.  Stephanie quickly developed her knowledge and experience in construction delivery, progressing through multiple roles across several projects before progressing into Project Management.
Throughout her career, Stephanie has worked in a number of roles across a broad range of projects. These projects include several large scale commercial and mixed use projects which involve large integrated fitout conversion. Some of these projects include: Darling Harbour Live NW Commercial Building and CBA Fitout; International Towers Sydney, Barangaroo; Mid City Centre (420 George St), NSW; Innovation Place, North Sydney and Deutsche Bank Place at 126 Phillip Street.
Stephanie is a passionate advocate for female progression in the building and construction industry. 



Dr Abigail Powell
Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Social Impact, UNSW 
Abigail currently holds an Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) titled ‘Promoting work-life balance: do flexible work arrangements really work for employees in Australia?’ She is also co-CI on an ARC Linkage project with Professors Martin Loosemore (UNSW Built Environment) and Louise Chappell (UNSW Arts and Social Sciences) investigating gender equity in the Australian construction industry.
Abigail has over 10 years’ experience as an academic researcher, whose research is underpinned by her passion for social justice and equality. Abigail is an experienced project manager and mixed methods researcher with expertise in gender diversity, work-life balance, young people and social policy. Abigail has worked with industry, government and NGOs, including research and evaluations for NSW Health, NSW Commission for Children and Young People, beyondblue, headspace, Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship, Diversity Council Australia and the Australian Human Rights Commission.
Natalie Galea
Research Associate, UNSW Built Environment 
Natalie Galea is a research associate and PhD candidate who is currently pursuing Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) at the Faculty of Built Environment. She is the lead researcher on an ARC Industry Linkage project focused on gender equity and diversity in the Australian construction sector.
Prior to her PhD, Natalie worked across a range of construction roles for major contractors and property developers. During this time, she delivered a range of projects - building, defence, civil and mining infrastructure - in Australian and internationally.
Natalie represented Australia and the UNSW Judo Club in the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. She was also the Australian Olympic judo team section manager at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Professor Louise Chappell
School of Social Sciences, UNSW 
Louise Chappell is a Professor of Politics in the School of School Sciences and a former Australian Research Council Future Fellow. Louise’s research interests are in the areas of women’s rights; gender, politics and institutions and comparative federalism and public policy. Louise’s current research projects focus on gender justice at the International Criminal Court, the design of reparations for sexual violence and federalism and women’s policy making in comparative perspective.
Professor Martin Loosemore
UNSW Built Environment 
Martin Loosemore is Professor of Construction Management at UNSW. He is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Building. His research has received numerous international awards and he has generated over $8 million of competitive research funding including 7 Australian Research Council Grants. He has published over 200 scholarly books and internationally refereed articles in risk management, innovation, social enterprise, corporate social responsibility and HRM.
His most recent research on social enterprise and corporate social responsibility explores how private contracting and consulting firms operating in the construction and engineering industries can engage more effectively with the communities in which they build and leave a positive and sustainable legacy for future generations.
Martin has also published widely in the area of innovation and productivity and in 2003 was appointed as Advisor on Workplace Productivity and Reform to the Giles Royal Commission into the Building and Construction Industry. He was subsequently invited to provide evidence to the 2004 Federal Senate inquiry into the Building and Construction Industry Bill and the 2009 Federal Senate inquiry in to Building and Construction Industry Improvement Amendment (Transition to Fair Work) Bill 2009. In 2009 he was appointed as a founding member of the Federal Built Environment Industry Innovation Council (BEIIC) and served for its full two terms. The BEIIC was one of only seven industry-specific councils established to advise the Minister on innovation policy in areas like climate change, sustainability and industry competitiveness as well as issues such as regulatory reform, workforce capability, skills needs, access to new technologies and other priorities for the industry. In 2014 Martin contributed to 2014 Productivity Commission Inquiry into Infrastructure and has written extensively in leading media outlets including the Australian Financial Review, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian.
Martin is also a Visiting Professor at Loughborough University in the UK and is a founding partner in a successful social business which specialises in using social procurement to provide employment opportunities for disadvanatged groups in the construction, engineering and facilities management sectors.
Dr Adam Rogan
Research Associate, UNSW Built Environment

Adam Rogan is a research associate at UNSW who conducts research and teaching focused on gender, sexualities, and the critical study of men and masculinities. Adam is the author of various book chapters and journal articles on the subject of gender and masculinities and recently completed a PhD in Sociology examining the relationship between young men’s engagement in risky drinking and public violence and the construction of legitimate masculine identities. Adam has over five years’ experience as an academic researcher with a particular focus on qualitative research and critical data analysis, and previously held the position of lecturer and tutor at The University of Wollongong.

Date: Wednesday 7 December 2016
Venue: Australian Human Rights Commission, Level 3, 175 Pitt Street Sydney
Time: 9.30am to 11.30am

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Page Last Updated: 20 Oct 2016