As much as we focus upon Australia and New Zealand as our core IPWEA business, we must actively engage with the global asset and fleet management community.
As the peak industry body in the AM sector, IPWEA receives delegations from around the world looking at how we do things. Just as importantly, we must go to other countries to appreciate and understand their operating environments. This is what responsible leadership is all about.
At the end of this month a delegation of 15 IPWEA members will be travelling to the American Public Works Association’s expo and conference, PWX to be held in Kansas City, Missouri. At least five of those attending (including myself) will be presenting international papers at the conference. Attended by around 4,000 delegates and four pavilions of exhibitions, the impact and magnitude of PWX is astonishing. Yet, the regular contacts that we have nurtured over the years across the often back-to-back meetings means that Australia and New Zealand are held in the highest regard by not just the Americans and Canadians, but by delegates from across the globe. Understanding what asset management means in some third world African countries places a very different reality check on what is achievable.
What is alarming however, is that the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) conducts a four yearly report card across 16 infrastructure categories. America’s latest score: a D+ with an estimated price tag of $4.6 trillion to fix. We’d like to think that Australia was doing so much better, but Engineers Australia’s most recent report card across the same infrastructure classes produced only a C rating – nothing too flash. A lot more on this will be discussed at next week’s Asset Management Congress in Canberra.
This concern regarding a generally low level of applied asset management principles at the coal face has been validated recently by state Auditor General reports across Victoria, NSW, and Queensland.
The Canadian Government has just committed $50 million in funding to upgrade their asset management competency, and it’s a great accolade to IPWEA Australasia that our on-line training course, Professional Certificate in Asset Management Planning, together with our NAMS.PLUS program, has been adopted as an integral part of that competency uplifting through our affiliate, NAMS Canada.
You can see just how critical it is to share globally our collective experiences and resources. That’s an industry leadership responsibility that IPWEA Australasia accepts.
Combined with next week’s Asset Management Congress, with the Deputy Prime Minister in Canberra; and our Smart City World Expo Congress tour to Barcelona in November; our Director International (Chris Champion); and, our ISO 55000 Technical Committee representation (Peter Way PSM), IPWEA Australasia is ensuring that our region’s knowledge bank on asset and fleet management is shared across the globe. Members can and should take pride in that.