Serena Lee and Geert Hendrix from Farmwall gave a presentation during the 2018 Innovation in Food and Agribusiness Forum (IFAF) showing how their aquaponic vertical garden is turning cities into food producing ecosystems that positively impact the environment and inspire others to do the same.
Farmwall is an agrifood-tech start-up
that designs urban farming technology and experiences to enhance fresh produce
accessibility in the city. The
company’s flagship product is the Farmwall – a small-scale indoor farm the
size of a bookcase that grows and stores microgreens, herbs and leafy greens in
a nicely designed natural ecosystem, eliminating packaging waste and food
Farmwall has a gut made of clay balls, which keeps all the good bacteria in
balance and allows the food to grow naturally, without enclosing or sterilising
it. There are fish at the bottom of the Farmwall, creating a colourless gas
called ammonia. The good bacteria transform this gas into nitrates for the
plants. Farmwall leases
the infrastructure on an end-to-end service model, based on a monthly
Cities that feed our planet
The delivery of sustainability is shifting through the rise of the experience economy, the push for health and wellness within our urban landscape, and innovations in AgTech. In their presentation, Farmwall showcases how a combination of technology and customer service can bring meaningful experiences through food, with positive social and environmental outcomes. The mindset of staying agile and embracing a disruptive business model has brought the start-up one step closer to their vision of creating “cities that feed our planet”.
With over half the world population now
living in cities, mass transport and renewable energy are becoming ever more
important, as are the growth of new industries and information and
communication technologies (SDG Fund, 2019).
Industrialisation drives economic growth, creates job opportunities and thereby reduces income poverty. Innovation advances the technological capabilities of industrial sectors and prompts the development of new skills. Infrastructure provides the basic physical systems and structures essential to the operation of a society or enterprise. Sustained investment in infrastructure and innovation are crucial drivers of economic growth and development. However, basic infrastructure like roads, information and communication technologies, sanitation, electrical power and water remains scarce in many developing countries (SDG Knowledge Platform, 2019).
At the moment, 2.3 billion people still lack
access to basic sanitation. In some low-income African countries,
infrastructure constraints cut businesses’ productivity by around 40 percent.
Moreover, 2.6 billion people in developing countries do not have access to
constant electricity, and more than 4 billion people still do not have access
to the Internet – of which 90 percent are in the developing world. There are
opportunities too. The renewable energy sectors currently employ more than 2.3
million people, which could reach 20 million by 2030. Also, in developing
countries, barely 30 percent of agricultural products undergo industrial
processing, compared to 98 percent high-income countries, which suggests that
there are great opportunities for developing countries in agribusiness (UNDP, 2019).
The focus of SDG 9
The focus of sustainable development
goal (SDG) 9 is to build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and
sustainable industrialization and foster innovation. These pillars all share
the objective of achieving socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable
economic development. Realizing SDG 9 by 2030 requires overcoming resource
constraints, building and strengthening developing countries’ capacities, and
exploring innovative ways to solve development challenges. SDG 9 has approximately
20 targets and indicators related to its three pillars and is closely linked to
other SDGs related to job creation, sustainable livelihoods, improved health,
technology and skills development, gender equality, food security, green
technologies and climate change (SDG Knowledge Hub, 2019).
Implications for business
Ageing, degraded or non-existent
infrastructure makes conducting good business challenging. Business relies on
materials, resources, labour and service support from all corners of the world
and the ability to access them efficiently is key to establishing new markets.
Computing and technology-based skills are of significant value to most
businesses today, and consumers of common goods and services live on every
continent. However, basic infrastructure supporting technologies,
communications, transportation, and sanitation that business relies on is not
universally available, hindering economic growth and societal progress. Promoting
sustainable industries, and investing in scientific research and innovation,
are all important ways to facilitate sustainable development (SDG Fund, 2019).
More than 4 billion people still do not
have access to the internet. Bridging this digital divide is crucial to ensure
equal access to information and knowledge, and consequently foster innovation
and entrepreneurship. This presents an opportunity for business. By committing
to sustainable industrialization and promoting innovation across company
operations, businesses can contribute to development efforts in the regions in
which they operate through upgrading local infrastructure, investing in
resilient energy and communications technologies, and making these technologies
available to all people, including marginalized groups, who might not have
access otherwise. Global companies can also promote inclusive infrastructure
development by bringing valuable financial services and employment
opportunities to smaller and/or minority-owned businesses (SDG Compass, 2019).
on SDG 9 represents a significant market opportunity for businesses in other
ways too. For example, retrofits and installation of new infrastructure is a
market worth $3.7 trillion annually. Delivering this infrastructure can allow
businesses to access new markets for their products and services, as well as
access to underserved labour markets and resources, while respecting
international standards for environment and social impacts. The transition to a
green, resilient industrial and infrastructure base globally represents a
significant investment opportunity with large rewards for businesses that can position
themselves at the leading edge of the sectors that must deliver it (SDG Blueprint for Business, 2017).
Interconnectedness to other SDGs
Action on SDG 9 is strongly interconnected
with many other SDGs, most notably SDG 11 on sustainable cities and
communities, and SDG 12 on responsible consumption and production. Efforts to
create new opportunities for innovation and employment in developing countries
directly relate to SDG 8. Infrastructure-dependent SDGs including those
relating to food (SDG 2), water and sanitation (SDG 6), energy (SDG 7), and
climate action (SDG 13) will also benefit from action on SDG 9. Leading action
must be managed such that it does not risk exacerbating existing inequalities,
or creating new ones, and so that it is not contributing to any form of
corruption and violation of human rights that would negatively impact on a
range of SDGs (SDG Blueprint for Business, 2017).
The video on SDG 9 is created by our CR3+ partner ISAE Brazilian Business School (ISAE). The video highlights two projects that are related to SDG 9. The first project is called Jardins de Mel, which involves placing bee boxes in areas such as parks, schools and community gardens. The project raises awareness about the environment, the contribution of insects to maintaining life, pollination and the importance of ecosystem services. The second project is a start-up from Curitiba in Brazil that used renewable energy technology to create a mini-plant that generates energy from water and then returns 100% of the water back to its source.
Please enjoy the presentation.
If you would like access to the full video to use in your teaching, please contact Dr Swati Nagpal.
This blog is part of the SDG Series, a series that focuses on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations, in the lead up to the CR3+ Conference in October 2019.
The first half of 2019 has not only seen LBS receiving its Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) accreditation but also saw us soar in some of the most important global rankings.
According to Times Higher Education (known for their THE World University Rankings) there are at least20,000 higher education institutions in the world. Being ranked by university or subject in the top 1000 means belonging to the top 5% in the world (THE, 2018).
The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) by
ShanghaiRanking Consultancy is “the most widely used annual ranking of the
world’s research universities” (The Economist cited in Downing & Ganotice
Jr, 2017, p. 97).
Last week, ARWU ranked La Trobe Business School in the top 45 for Hospitality and Tourism Management (2019), in the top 400 for Business Administration (2019) and in the top 500 for Economics (2019) worldwide.
Besides AACSB, the Hospitality and Tourism Management program is also accredited by the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD) through the prestigious EFMD Programme Accreditation System (EPAS). Moreover, it has three other qualifications embedded: Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA), Responsible Service of Food (RSF, also known as Principles of Hygiene) and Galileo certification by Travelport – a leading industry-based travel agent group.
Business Newsroom asked Paul Strickland (Program Director – Tourism, Hospitality and Event Management) about the outstanding ARWU result for Hospitality and Tourism Management:
In the first year, students have a Work Integrated Learning (WIL) component in which they are trained and gain work experience at Mantra Bell City in Preston. This generally leads to employment in the hospitality sector immediately. Students then progress through second year and the 3rd year capstone subjects is Tourism and Hospitality Simulation where students form teams and simulate operating a hotel at senior management level.
The program also supports industry networking events, volunteering and career progression opportunities such as international study tours, exchanges and short programs. The New Colombo Plan funding has been a successful enhancement to assist students to achieve their goals and internationalise the program.
Also our research is embedded into the program. Numerous research books and texts have been developed by staff members and used in teaching globally. All these types of activities, working with industry and quality of research have contributed to our international rankings.
Paul Strickland (Program Director – Tourism, Hospitality and Event Management)
In order to be ranked by ARWU, the university must
have Nobel Laureates, Highly Cited Researchers or papers published in Nature or
Science. Amount of papers indexed by Science Citation Index-Expanded (SCIE) and
Social Science Citation Index (SSCI) are also included together with per capita
academic performance. This leads to a total of 1200 universities of which the
best 500 are being published.
QS World University Rankings
The QS World University Rankings, compiled by QS Quacquarelli Symonds, announced last week that La Trobe Business School’s Online MBA climbed 12 places to being number 32 in the world & number 3 in Australia in the QS Distance Online MBA Rankings (2019).
The strong improvement in the ranking over the last 12 months reflects an overhaul of the program and aligning more strongly to industry via its partners, including the Australian Ballet, National Gallery of Victoria, NORTH Link and the Melbourne Innovation Centre.
The MBA also underwent a comprehensive refresh recently and provides not only more relevant content, but also a range of options for delivery such as of face to face class options for online students so they have the opportunity to be part of the on-campus experience, meet colleagues and engage with lecturers.
Instead of focusing mainly on research outputs like
ARWU, QS World University Rankings puts emphasis on a university’s reputation,
from both an academic and employer perspective. They use six indicators:
academic reputation, employer reputation, student-to-faculty ratio, citations
per faculty, international faculty ratio and international student ratio
(Downing & Ganotice Jr, 2017).
References: - Downing, K. & Ganotice Jr, F.A. (2017). World University Rankings and the Future of Higher Education. IGI Global. - MBA News (2019). Australian Online MBAs Score Global Top 50 Rankings in 2019. [link]
At the 2018 Innovation in Food and Agribusiness Forum, Professor Tony Bacic, Director of the La Trobe Institute of Agriculture & Food, provided an overview of Australia’s agriculture sector, its research, production and institutional challenges, and global opportunities.
Tony is internationally recognised as a leader in
plant biotechnology. His research is focused on the structure, function and
biosynthesis of plant cell walls and their biotechnological application as well
as the application of functional genomics tools in biological systems.
From 1996 to 2017, Professor Bacic held a Personal Chair in the School of
BioSciences at the University of Melbourne, was Leader of the Australian
Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence in Plant Cell Walls team at the
University of Melbourne (2011-2017), and also spent time as Deputy Director of
that Centre, and Director of the Plant Cell Biology Research Centre at the
School of BioSciences. Tony is a current Board Member of the Royal Botanic
Gardens Victoria. Tony is a James Cook University Outstanding Alumnus (2010)
and a La Trobe University Distinguished Alumnus (2013).
La Trobe Institute of Agriculture & Food
Besides the future of agricultural production and science systems, Tony talks
about the La Trobe Institute of Agriculture & Food (LIAF). The LIAF’s aim is to tackle
the issues of growing enough food to meet future world demand and exploring the
benefits of medicinal agriculture. This includes a focus on crop
diversification and changing diets and research that considers the crop plant
environment (e.g. Golden Soil), identifies innovative methods for improved
production of specialty grains (e.g. Fit-for-Purpose Seeds) and develops
enhanced nutritional quality and medicinal benefits (e.g. Quality Dietary Fibre
and medical marijuana).
enjoy Tony’s presentation.
This blog is part of the LBS Innovation Series, developed by Dr Mark Cloney, Professor of Practice in Economics at La Trobe Business School.
At the start of the year, several LBS students went to Indonesia for their Sustainable Tourism Professional Practicum (STPP). Indonesia has a thriving tourism industry. However, the industry faces issues relating to sustainability and resource management, and there is a need to develop more sustainable tourism practices.
ACICIS and STPP
Australian Consortium for ‘In-Country’ Indonesian Studies (ACICIS –
pronounced Ah-chee-chis, as an
Indonesian would say it) is a non-profit international educational consortium
that provides LBS students, particularly those enrolled in Tourism &
Hospitality, the opportunity to undertake a STPP. Students gain, besides
practical skills in hospitality, tourism and management, an understanding of
the social, cultural and political systems that underpin the tourism industry
Sustainable Tourism Professional Practicum Program is a six-week study program,
undertaken prior to the start of the Australian academic calendar year
(January/February). Students can choose their
preferred location and organisation, but all placements are built around or
have sustainable principles in tourism.
New Colombo Plan
Students doing the STPP can also apply for the New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant (NCP), an initiative of the Australian Government, which supports Australian undergraduate students to gain work experience in Asia. LBS has managed to secure 5 NCP Mobility grants for 2019/2020, each worth $3000, to support eligible students on the program.
LBS students Jake and Rahul in Bali
Both Jake Richards and Rahul Kumar are Bachelor of Business students majoring in Tourism and Hospitality who went to Bali for their STPP. Jake, a second year student, worked at EcoBali where he learned about the importance of recycling, waste management and sustainable systems.
Rahul worked at Bloo Lagoon Eco Village where he developed the
social networks of the organisation and supported housekeeping, front office
and food & beverage departments. Asking Rahul about his STPP experience, he
“This was my first professional practicum and I have learnt a lot of new things about the tourism and hotel industry, built my networks, gained confidence and greater cross-cultural understanding and inter-personal skills.”
Over the past 25 years, the number of
workers living in extreme poverty has declined dramatically, despite the
long-lasting impact of the economic crisis of 2008/2009. In developing
countries, the middle class now makes up more than 34 percent of total
employment – a number that has almost tripled between 1991 and 2015. However,
as the global economy continues to recover we are seeing slower growth,
widening inequalities and employment that is not expanding fast enough to keep
up with the growing labour force (SDG Fund, 2019).
The International Labour Organisation’s
(ILO) 100th anniversary was
commemorated in April this year at the UN Headquarters in New York, where the
United Nations’ Global Assembly President María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés noted
that, despite the 180 ILO conventions, ranging from gender equality to forced
labour, “injustice is still a reality for millions”. Some of the figures are:
40 million people today are victims of modern slavery, which is more than twice
the number involved in the transatlantic slave trade.
more women than men are underutilized in the labour force – 85 million compared
to 55 million.
million people are unemployed worldwide, a third of whom are young.
million people make up the working poor, half of whom are young.
700 million workers lived in extreme or moderate poverty in 2018, with less
than US$ 3.20 per day.
billion people are engaged in informal work, often without social protections.
The focus of sustainable development goal eight (SDG 8) is to promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all. SDG 8 contains a number of targets indicating the type and scale of economic growth desired. These include ensuring economic growth is faster (at least seven per cent per year) in the least developed countries and requiring that the growth is aligned with development-oriented policies such as supporting start-ups and SMEs, the eradication of modern slavery, and the prioritisation of high quality jobs.
How can business be involved?
As employers, creating decent jobs is
one of the fundamental ways in which businesses support economic growth and
sustainable development, but it is also how companies support and drive their
own future development.
What is decent work?
Decent work, as defined by the ILO, is
work that is productive and delivers a fair income; security in the workplace;
social protection for families; better prospects for personal development and
social integration; freedom for people to express their concerns, organize and
participate in the decisions that affect their lives; and equality of
opportunity and treatment for all women and men (SDG Blueprint for Business, 2018).
UN Guiding Principles & SDG Blueprint for Business
A way of providing decent work is
through the implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human
Rights; a set of guidelines for States and companies to prevent, address and
remedy human rights abuses committed in business operations (find the document here). Further, the SDG Blueprint for
Business outlines four key ways that businesses can focus their actions on
decent working conditions for all employees across the business and supply
chains, with partnerships to build suppliers’ capacity to do the same.
and train the labour force, focusing on vulnerable and economically
decent formal-sector jobs in labour-intensive sectors, especially in
economic growth and productivity by investing in R&D, upgrading skills, and
supporting growing businesses, in a way that is compatible with sustainable
The video below is created by our CR3+ partner Hanken School of Economics (Finland). The video focuses on the targets set for SDG 8. Firstly, the video features Professor Emeritus Jeff Hearn, Research Director of the GODESS Institute, a research and development institute that focuses on research areas of Gender, Organization, Diversity, Equality, and Social Sustainability in transnational times (Hanken, 2019). Jeff looks at “what is work?” and more importantly “what is decent work?”. Professor Emeritus Niklas Bruun, Chair of Board of the GODESS Institute, continues the discussion on decent work as outlined by the UN and explains the aims of the International Labour Organisation. Lastly, Charlotta Niemistö, Director of the GODESS Institute and Project Leader of Wellbeing Economy Alliance (WeAll), discusses sustainable economic growth and social and human sustainability.
Please enjoy the presentation.
If you would like access to the full video to use in your teaching, please contact Dr Swati Nagpal.
La Trobe Business School and La Trobe Law School jointly ran a very successful Careers Fair in Bendigo for local students to showcase the employment opportunities available within Bendigo.
The power of alumni
Firms in attendance actively looking for accounting students were MGR Accountants, Lead Advisory, AFS & Associates and Strategem Accountants. These four firms regularly provide internship and graduate employment opportunities to our local students and have done so for many years. The majority of staff representing the firms are alumni of LBS who completed an Accounting Work Placement with the firm, supervised by Dr Kate Ashman. As such, they are very keen to give back to the University whenever possible due to the opportunities they were offered.
It has also become evident that local accounting firms have grown to the point where they are looking for a wider range of potential graduates including marketing and management students. This creates excellent opportunities for all LBS students and their employability. Additionally, Hazeldene’s Chicken Farm Bendigo attended as they were looking for both accounting and marketing students and are a large employer in the region.
Representatives from law firms, the Loddon Campaspe Community Legal Centre and the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria also attended the Fair. They provided information to Law and Criminology students about internship as well as employment opportunities.
Careers Fair Success
“It was a great opportunity for us, to be able to walk straight out of class, and have all these potential employers here for us to talk to.”
LBS student attending the event
The employers were equally pleased with the student attendance and reported to the organisers that it was incredibly valuable for them to attend. La Trobe University´s Careers & Employability Adviser Cris Stanway was available on-site to assist students with their resumes, which proved popular. The Fair was deemed an overwhelming success.
In 2020, the university will look to expand the range of businesses in attendance as there are many more keen to participate.
Many thanks to
Francine Rochford, Rob Stephenson, Andrew Quek, Myl Duffy and Mel Birch-Inward
who provided invaluable assistance in organising and ensuring the smooth
running of the day.
the 2018 Innovation
in Food and Agribusiness Forum,
Professor Harsharn Gill gave a very insightful presentation on global consumer food and
dietary trends and the opportunities and challenges that this presents for
the Australian food industry.
Professor Harsharn Gill is Head of the Food Research & Innovation Centre at RMIT University. He has over 25 years’ experience in leading and managing food, nutrition and health R&D in private and public sectors. Prior to joining RMIT, he held senior R&D leadership roles in Australia and New Zealand, including Research Director at the Department of Primary Industries Victoria; Chair of Functional Foods & Human Health at Massey University, and Director of Milk & Health Research Centre at Fonterra, New Zealand. Harsharn has published widely and his research contributions have been recognised nationally and internationally with several awards and appointments to international expert panels, including World Health Organisation (WHO), Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Immune Deficiency Foundation (IDF).
Developments and trends
By 2050 the world’s
population will be 10 billion and we will need to increase food calorie
production by 69% to meet demand. Population growth is not the only reason more food
is needed, there is also a spread of prosperity across the world, especially in
China and India, which increases demand for meat, eggs, and dairy, and boosts
pressure to grow more corn and soybeans to feed more livestock. So, how can we
increase the availability of food while simultaneously reducing pressure on the
environment? There is currently a trend toward more plant-based products and Harsharn
sees great opportunity in Australia for developing and marketing plant-derived protein
enjoy Harsharn’s presentation.
This blog is part of the LBS Innovation Series, developed by Dr Mark Cloney, Professor of Practice in Economics at La Trobe Business School.
The aim of sustainable development goal seven (SDG 7) is ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all. At the moment however, there is a wide variety across countries, and the current rate of progress falls short of what will be required to achieve this goal. Redoubled efforts will be needed, particularly for countries with large energy access deficits and high energy consumption (UN SDG Indicators, 2019).
One in 7 people still lack electricity and most of them living in rural areas of the developing world. More than 40 percent of the world’s population (3 billion) rely on polluting and unhealthy fuels for cooking. And, as the population continues to grow, so will the demand for cheap energy, and an economy reliant on fossil fuels is creating drastic changes to our climate. The share of renewables in final energy consumption is modestly increasing (from 17.3 per cent in 2014 to 17.5 per cent in 2015), but only 55 per cent of the renewable share was derived from modern forms of renewable energy.
There have been improvements in recent years:
From 2000 to 2016, the proportion of the global population with access to electricity increased from 78 per cent to 87 per cent, with the absolute number of people living without electricity dipping to just below 1 billion.
From 2000 to 2016, the electricity access rate increased from 60 per cent to 86 per cent in Southern Asia and from 26 per cent to 43 per cent in sub-Saharan Africa.
Global energy intensity decreased by 2.8 per cent from 2014 to 2015, double the rate of improvement seen between 1990 and 2010 (UN SDG Knowledge Platform, 2019).
The focus of SDG 7
The targets set to be achieved by 2030 include universal access to affordable, reliable and modern energy services, increasing the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix, energy efficiency improvements, investments in clean and renewable energy and energy infrastructure.
Affordable and clean energy has come one step closer due to progress in electrification, particularly in least developed countries (LDCs), and improvements in industrial energy efficiency. However, national priorities and policy ambitions still need to be strengthened to put the world on track to meet the energy targets for 2030 (UN SDG Knowledge Platform, 2019).
SDG 7 is also crucial to achieving many of the other SDGs – from poverty
eradication via advancements in health, education, water supply and
industrialization to mitigating climate change.
The Energy Security Trilemma in Australia
an affordable, reliable and environmentally responsible energy sector is a huge
challenge for policy makers, also in Australia. In the face of rapid
technological change in the energy sector, policy needs to evolve to achieve
Australia’s Climate Change commitments under the Paris Agreement;
stable supply of energy so the ‘lights don’t go out’ (again);
rising electricity costs, particularly for vulnerable and elderly households (Pursuit,
access to electricity is near universal in Australia, the retail price of
electricity has more than doubled in the past decade. This means Australians
now pay higher electricity prices than most other OECD countries. Rising retail
energy prices are placing low-income households under significant financial
pressure. The 20% of Australian households with the lowest incomes are spending
4-5% of their household budget on electricity alone. Additionally, low-income
Australians often live in poorly insulated and energy-inefficient houses and
are less likely to be able to afford solar panels and other high-cost items
that help reduce energy bills, such as energy-efficient water heaters and
remains highly dependent on fossil fuels, with renewable energy making up just
7.5% of the total final energy consumption for 2014. However, the Australian
Government’s Renewable Energy Target and state–based actions are now driving
substantial investment in renewable electricity generation and renewables are
likely to account for 23% of electricity generated by 2020.
this is good news, energy policy after 2020 remains uncertain. An absence of
federal incentives for renewables means that investment will rely on state
policies and commercial returns, putting future levels of investment and
emission reduction targets at risk (Transforming
Australia Report, 2018).
The video on SDG 7 is created by our CR3+ partner Hanken School of Economics (Finland). In the first part of the video, Professor Peter Björk talks about the General Assembly’s decision in 2015 to make energy part of the SDGs and discusses the Accelerating SDG7 Achievement document released in 2018. This publication includes 27 policy briefs by global energy authorities from the UN System, international organizations, Member States and others. It proposes a new Global Agenda for Accelerated SDG7 Action as a clear roadmap towards achieving universal energy access by 2030 and maximizing its positive impact on other SDGs (Division for Sustainable Development Goals, 2019). According to Peter, the document gives a good overview of what has been done between 2015 and 2018 to achieve SDG 7 and more importantly, what still needs to be done to achieve this SDG. In the second part of the video, Peter focuses on energy systems and interviews Jukka-Pekka Niemi from Wärtsilä, a partner company of Hanken School of Economics that produces and sells energy solutions. The interview focuses on Wärtsilä’s strategy in leading the energy sector’s transformation toward a 100% renewable energy future.
Please enjoy the
If you would like
access to the full video to use in your teaching, please contact Dr
LBS has appointed a new Professor of Practice, Stuart Black. Business Newsroom sat down with Stuart and asked him what brought him to LBS and how he’ll be approaching his new role.
Professors of Practice
LBS has been appointing Professors of Practice since
2015. Professors of Practice have significant experience in business, public or
the not-for-profit sectors, and play a key role in facilitating links between
the La Trobe Business School and industry. They contribute to the design of
industry relevant curriculum, they reflect best practice nationally and
internationally, and they conduct lectures, workshops and executive programs.
Because of their extensive industry experience, they can provide students with
unique professional and practical insights into the business world.
Stuart recently retired from
Deloitte after driving the “analytics inside” agenda as a senior partner. Some
of his key responsibilities at Deloitte involved the Data Asset Agenda, analytics-enabled
innovation, the development of decoupled platforms & products, analytics-enabled
transformation of audit, tax and financial advisory services as well as cultural
transformation of professional staff around innovation & analytics. Prior
to Deloitte, Stuart worked as a Strategy Principal at National Australia Bank,
as a Principal for A.T. Kearney (Sydney, Melbourne, Asia) and as Senior Consultant
for Andersen Consulting in the US, UK and Malaysia. Stuart is also on the La
Trobe Business School Master of Business Analytics Advisory Board.
Welcome to the La Trobe Business School Stuart. How did you get involved with LBS?
A few years ago, I was approached by LBS to join the Master of Business Analytics Advisory Board. As a board
member from industry, I provided insight on what the industry is looking for in
graduates, particularly the skills and experiences graduates need to have when they
finish their degree. Then, in 2018, around the same time that I retired as a
partner from Deloitte, LBS was introducing the School of Disruption
concept, something I found very interesting, and they were in the midst of developing
the Bachelor of Digital Business. The Data Analytics team then approached me
and asked me to be involved with developing course material, particularly the cornerstone
and the capstone course for this new degree. This eventually led to becoming a Professor
How are you approaching your role as Professor of Practice?
To me, my role has three elements. Firstly, there is the teaching element, delivering subjects from a practice-driven perspective. Secondly, I am working with a group of like-minded academics from across LBS to bring the concept of disruption into LBS’ courses and materials across the board. Lastly, using my industry connections. How do we connect the university with the outside world and bring the outside world into the university environment? For the subjects I developed, I contacted people in my network and got them involved as well. It creates unique learning opportunities for students, having industry people discussing disruption in the real world through guest lectures, short videos, etcetera.