Membership renewal & AGCC workshop

It’s membership renewal time and the URL link for the 2018-2019 membership is

If a Tax Invoice is required, please select PRINT TICKETS from the link when the booking is completed. There is also a PRINT TICKETS link in the TryBooking Team confirmation email.

And just to keep you posted on what the National Committee has been up to, we are putting together a workshop to be held after the AGCC 2018 conference, on Friday 19 October 2018 at the South Australian Drill Core facility, TITLE: “Unrealised billions: deposits hidden in legacy data” and we have received an interesting set of expressions of interest from folk who wish to give a presentation. We are finalising some of the workshop registration and administrative details now and will send out more information as soon as we can.

We do hope that you continue to support AGIA.

Dr Kerry Smith

AGIA (Inc.) Membership Secretary (& AGIA President)

Read all about it in the latest issue of the Byte

The latest issue of the AGIA newsletter The Great Australian Byte has been published and is available here. There is plenty to read about, including:

  • AGIA AGM – Reports, New National Committee and Special Resolution
  • AGIA South Australia Seminar report - Government geoscience information resources and systems in South Australia and the Northern Territory 
  • AGIA Occasional Paper 10 available online – Dr Kerry Smith’s report on the use of GeMPeT
  • NOPIMS update (our favourite source of free Australian petroleum exploration data)
  • 2018 AGCC Update
  • and a brief recap of recent events such as the AGIA Cut Mine Tour and the PPDM Perth Data Management Workshop


If you want your geoscience information news a little faster join the private AGIA LinkedIn Group (find the link at the top of the right hand web page menu).

AGIA Winter Warmer & Tech Talk

Artificial Intelligence – what does it mean for you? Guest speaker Rob Freeth

Big data and digital disruption are much talked about these days. There is already widespread use of data analytics in social media, marketing, and retail. And now we have the next wave of technological disruption – Artificial Intelligence. Sometimes it is challenging to see beyond the hype. Yet we are seeing a whole new raft of technologies and applications for AI, and not the least is information searching. What will this next wave of technology development mean for jobs, and how will it affect those who work in information sciences? This Tech Talk will highlight the need to adapt how we think about AI, and how to keep relevant in a time of rapid technological change.

7.30am (WST) Wednesday 12 July 2017
Discussion to begin at 8am prompt
Light breakfast provided

BHP Billiton Building
Level 2, Room 02.12
Brookfield Place
125 St George’s Terrace, Perth
Dial-in/online option available for those unable to attend in person

RSVP via TryBooking by Monday 10 July is essential
for building entry and dial-in participation


Rob Freeth has over 40 years’ experience in computing and information systems, with particular expertise in the application of information systems to non-commercial aspects of business: engineering, and land and geographic (spatial) information. He is particularly focussed on the business aspects that drive and define information systems in these areas, supported by a broad understanding of the current technology and future trends.
Rob spent ten years as an Information Manager for WMC Resources, a large Australian and international mining company. During this time he managed the information and technology services for WMC’s Exploration Division globally, which included information systems, data and information management, as well as information technology. More recently he was responsible for establishing enterprise geographic systems for the Perth Airport, and the Port Headland Port Authority (now Pilbara Ports).
Rob is a co-founder of the WA Mega Data Cluster, which aims to build WA’s capability in Data Science and STEM and has over 600 members. He is currently a member of the Research Investment Committee for CRCSI (CRC for Spatial Information); a member of the Advisory Committee for Minerals Research Institute of WA (MRIWA); on the selection committee for WA’s Golden Gecko awards.
Rob is a Fellow of the Australian Computer Society, recognising his contribution in the field of spatial information

Australian Geoscience Council Convention 2018

As a member organisation of the Australian Geoscience Council, AGIA is assisting in the organisation of the AGCC 2018, with AGIA President Angela Riganti as head of the Advocacy, Media, Protocol subcommittee.

Please take a moment to read the update on progress in developing the Convention program,  and if you are able to make a contribution or suggestion please get in touch with the Organising Committee at:


The development of big issues and ideas for AGCC 2018

An outline of the technical program for our inaugural Australian Geoscience Council Convention (AGCC 2018) was provided in the last issue of TAG (March 2017), when geoscientists were invited to engage directly with planning the program. The technical program will provide the opportunity for all geoscientists to communicate their work to a wide audience, and to hear about relevant developments presented by other geoscientists in multiple fields. Essentially, this broad program will provide the ‘bedrock’ of AGCC 2018 in a format familiar to regular attendees of the AESC, IGC and other large events. As is always the case, these sessions will be predominantly self-organising mini-symposia, strongly influenced by the actual papers that you submit as speakers, with guidance from our member organisations (eg, the International Association of Hydrogeologists) and overall direction by the Scientific and Technical Committee.

A proposed new approach

AGCC 2018 will provide opportunities to examine and consider some of the emerging issues that affect us all in geoscience. We anticipate these will be topics that attract attention from industry, government and academia, while also creating opportunities for non-geoscientists to engage and participate in our deliberations in Adelaide. This interaction will be a significant differentiator of this convention and will help us achieve our vision to ‘raise the profile of geoscience to be pre-eminent in Australia’. We also hope to expose delegates to ideas they would not normally engage with in routine technical talks, and to attract those people who don’t normally attend our various member organisation conferences.
To do this, we plan to have several focused discussions that raise the Big Issues, explore the Big Ideas (hopefully some including new approaches and directions for some of the Big Issues!) and reach consensus about providing commitment and support for ways to take geoscience forward. We are aware of the value of strategic planning and believe that exciting times are ahead for geoscience. Some of these have become apparent to many of us during the current formulation of a new Decadal Plan for Earth Science, sponsored by the Australian Academy of Science.
An example of one topic we favour will be built around the early commitment to attend by Iain Stewart, Director of the Sustainable Earth Institute in Plymouth, UK. Iain is a riveting speaker who is passionate about geoscience communication and education. We will hold a plenary session on this topic with additional key thinkers, an interactive question and answer session, the opportunity during the day to formulate an agreed convention position and a summing up statement (press release) that will be issued. We look forward to your thoughts on the merits of this approach and your likely level of commitment and engagement.

What are the big issues and ideas in geoscience?

We are seeking ideas about the Big Issues (and Big Ideas) that you want to explore, and about possible champions of these that will attract widespread community interest, support from major sponsors and the attention of policy makers.
At this stage, we have a think-tank subcommittee that has formulated the following possible topics from a much larger field of possible candidates:

  1. The future of the nuclear cycle in Australia
  2. Unconventional gas and energy security
  3. Resource-driven development of regional and northern Australia
  4. Reducing the impact of the boom-and-bust commodity cycle on Australian geoscience
  5. Geoscience education and communication.

Other possibilities could be the ever-increasing role of automation (robotics), improved drilling technologies, innovative geological models and the search for novel or unusual commodities, although these might be addressed comprehensively in the broad technical program. We are seeking your input on:

  • possible world-class thinkers to help us develop these or other topics
  • your own possible contributions eg, five-minute spoken position statements framing the issues and ideas
  • your interest in participation
  • your thoughts on our proposed approach (eg, whether these should be spread across the four days of the convention or all addressed on a single day)
  • whether these are the topics most important to you as geoscientists.

In conclusion

To reiterate, the broad technical basis of AGCC 2018 will allow us all to present papers on our specific technical interests (subject to acceptance by the Scientific and Technical Committee), which are of course very wide ranging and inclusive. There will no doubt also be embedded mini-symposia sessions covering the collective interests of many diverse groups and of our member organisations (eg, UNCOVER, JORC, Valmin).

We are now seeking your thoughts on the BIG ISSUES and BIG IDEAS component of AGCC 2018. To let us know your views, please get in touch with any member of the Organising Committee at our website:

On behalf of the AGCC 2018 Organising Committee