Largest conference yet draws 1900 delegates
The final Bushfire CRC conference, held in conjunction with the AFAC annual conference, was full of highlights in Melbourne last week. Key aspects of the week included the full day Research Forum, as well as both the research utilisation and outstanding contribution awards.
Over 1900 delegates attended over the conference week; a record attendance for a Bushfire CRC and AFAC conference. The trade exhibition was also the largest exhibition size, with 111 separate trade displays covering the expo hall.
The latest research into fire and all natural hazards was presented during the Research Forum, which kicked off the conference. Showing why research and innovation are vital precursors for safer communities and better environmental management, 30 presentations took place throughout the day, emphasising the diversity of research being conducted across all hazards.
The ‘Excellence in Utilisation of Bushfire CRC Research’ award was again presented, with the NSW Rural Fire Service acknowledged for both using, and further developing, Bushfire CRC research on fire behaviour modelling, grassland curing and smoke plume modelling to improve their operational tools.
As it was the final conference for the Bushfire CRC, it was fitting that the contribution all researchers have made to your Bushfire CRC over the last 10 years was acknowledged. Two researchers, however, were recognised for their consistently high quality research outputs, reflected in their publications and high research uptake by agencies. Fabienne Reisen from CSIRO and Blythe McLennan from RMIT were both awarded the ‘Outstanding contribution to the Bushfire CRC’ award.
The Bushfire CRC was also represented in the poster awards. From over 140 posters, PhD student Sondra Dickinson from the University of Melbourne was judged to have the best poster by a panel of experts.
Also online is bonus content from the Research Forum, provided by conference co-hosts CFA, who broadcast live interviews via their website. Bushfire CRC researchers John Handmer, Bob Cechet and Mika Peace were all interviewed, as well as Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC CEO Richard Thornton and Communications Manager David Bruce. All interviews are available now on CFA’s SoundCloud channel.