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Meet our new Adjunct Professor Phil Dolan

LBS is delighted to announce that Phil Dolan has been appointed as Adjunct Professor in the Business School. Phil is currently an Angel Investor, providing capital for start-ups. Prior to that he was Head of Investment Research at Macquarie Bank, Director of the Applied Finance Centre at Macquarie University, Dean of the Business School at UWA and Acting PVC of the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce at La Trobe University.

Business Newsroom sat down with Phil to talk about his latest appointment.

Welcome Phil! What brings you to LBS?

During my time as Acting Pro Vice Chancellor for the College of ASSC, I had the opportunity to observe the La Trobe Business School firsthand. I was very impressed with every aspect of the School’s operations, its faculty, its course offerings, and its industry links.

What are you bringing to LBS?

In terms of background, before my time in academia I spent 14 years working in the finance industry, at Macquarie Bank. While there, I was primarily responsible for overseeing the research activity of the Bank’s investment management arm, and I regularly interacted with finance academics and was a regular hirer of graduates from finance programs. My academic background has been primarily in Business Schools, most recently as Dean of the UWA Business School. Now that I have relocated to Melbourne, I am keen to be involved further at La Trobe.

How will you approach your role as adjunct professor?

I spent 7 years at Macquarie University, overseeing their Masters in Applied Finance program, the largest of its kind in the world (1,200 students). I taught in the program for some years, and would welcome the opportunity to get back in the classroom.

I am very supportive of the trend to expose students to teachers who combine academic and industry experience, and I look forward to contributing in this way to LBS.

LBS alumni receiving the Distinguished Alumni Award

Last week, three La Trobe Business School alumni were honoured with the Distinguished Alumni Award: leading economist, Bronwyn Curtis OBE; ASX 50 business leader, James Fazzino; and co-founder of Thankyou Group, Jarryd Burns.

La Trobe University has only awarded 82 of its 200,000 graduates with this prestigious award that celebrates significant accomplishments that La Trobe graduates have made in their personal and professional lives.

LBS’ 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award recipients

  • Bronwyn Curtis OBE graduated from La Trobe with a Bachelor of Economics. Bronwyn is a leading economist whose career spans both global financial markets and media. She has risen to the top of her field in one of the most competitive financial environments in the world, and was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to Business Economics in the 2008 Queen’s Birthday Honours List. Formerly the Head of Global Research at HSBC, Ms Curtis is now a Non-Executive Director at the UK’s Office of Budget Responsibility, and received an Honorary Doctorate from La Trobe University in 2017.
  • James Fazzino is a respected ASX 50 business leader with an enduring commitment to business sustainability and care for the community. He is the Chair of Manufacturing Australia, a Vice Chancellor’s Fellow at La Trobe University, an Adjunct Professor to the La Trobe Business School, and a member of the University’s Make The Difference Campaign Cabinet. Before leading Australian company Incitec Pivot Ltd into the global market, James secured a Bachelor of Economics from La Trobe.
  • Jarryd Burns was awarded the Young Achiever Award. Jarryd is a recent graduate from LBS, having received his Bachelor of Business/Financial Management in 2010. Jarryd is the co-founder of the Thankyou Group, a social enterprise. In 2008, while still studying at La Trobe University, Jarryd along with friends Daniel Flynn and Justine Flynn launched Thankyou, an organisation that commits 100 per cent of the profit from their consumer products to help end global poverty. Their range includes water and personal care products that fund safe water and toilets and a baby range that funds safe births and healthcare. In ten years, they’ve given over $5.8 million to fund programs for people in need in 20 countries.
LBS congratulates Brownyn, James and Jarryd with their award!

 

Information in this blog was originally published by LTU News 

Teaching excellence recognised with LTSU Teaching Award

Eshan Arya has been awarded the LTSU Teaching Award 2018. Eshan came to Australia from India and started at La Trobe College  (previously La Trobe Melbourne). He continued studying at La Trobe University and completed a Bachelor in Economics and a Master in International Relations with Honours. He currently is close to completing his PhD at LTU. Business Newsroom sat down with Eshan to ask him about his LTU journey, his teaching career at LBS, and of course the LTSU Teaching Award.

 

Eshan receiving the LTSU Teaching Award 2018

 

Congratulations with the LTSU Teaching Award 2018! Can you tell us a little bit more about the award?

The LTSU (La Trobe University Student Union) Teaching Award aims to recognise an academic who has shown exceptional dedication to the student learning experience. Nominations are judged by a selection panel and then, if enough nominations are received, the top five nominees put to an online poll for students to vote. The nominee with the most votes is assessed as the winner.

What is it about your teaching that students love?

I think my students nominated me because I always strive to understand their perspective and do not generalise the overall student community. While I adhere to the rules and regulations, I truly try to understand what each individual is going through in their lives and why their actions are focussed in certain directions.

I am known as a tough marker and have never shown any favouritism and yet my students have been nominating me for three years in a row – this could be for a variety of reasons. I believe apart from innovative teaching, bringing in industry examples, simplifying concepts, getting perks to the classroom and having deep knowledge in the subject, there are other traits that students’ value more which I strive to develop in myself. These traits refer to maintaining a bias free environment in the classroom which is non-judgemental and respectful towards differing opinions. Maintaining a bully free classroom, encouraging students to embrace multiculturalism and to learn from diversity around them.

Apart from business studies and concepts I groom my students to think outside of the box, to respect diverse lifestyle choices of their peers and not to engage in any form of sexism or discriminatory ideas or behaviour. I also challenge my students to push their own boundaries rather than comparing them with their peers. I also go out of the way to answer their doubts and provide them a constructive feedback. I believe the key in my teaching is having a genuine respect for all individuals and their lives and not treating them as a commodity.

Tell us a bit about your longstanding LTU journey

I started my journey in Australia as a student with La Trobe College (LTC). I did a pathway diploma program as my previous degrees were in Physics/Science from India, and I was shifting to business studies. At LTC I met very skilled and student centric teachers. Their approachable nature, knowledge in the subject area along with an engaging teaching style not only harboured my keenness in business studies, but also laid the foundations of my own teaching style later.

Upon finishing the program, I completed my Bachelor in Economics and Master in International Relations with Honours at LTU.  As a student at LTU, I was particularly impressed with the teaching style of Dr. Jan Libich, Dr. David Walker, Dr. Daniel Bray, Dr. Rosemarie Edillon and Dr. Tim Thornton who showed exceptional innovative teaching styles that inspired me. I find the teaching style of my colleague Pablo Ahumada very inspirational too.

I started teaching economics in 2011/12. My lecturers remembered me as a star student: I was best in class, won three Dean’s commendation awards and three La Trobe Gold awards. This definitely worked in my favour when I was looking for teaching opportunities.

Dr. David Walker, Dr. Bret Slade and Dr. Rosemarie Edillon were my first employers. I’m very grateful to them for giving me the opportunity to teach. They believed in me, even though I had no prior teaching experience. I have taught various subjects: States Security & International Relations, Modern World Economy, Business in a Globalised World, Interpersonal skills & conflict management, Foundations of Management, Business Foundations, Big Ideas in Business and Organisational Change & Development. Currently I am teaching various bachelor and master subjects.

You have definitely built a great teaching portfolio at LBS. Besides your PhD and teaching, do you have time for other things?

Besides teaching at LTU, I teach Maths and English to High school students of refugee backgrounds for multiple city councils as a volunteer. I also teach Karate. As a 6th Dan Black Belt I teach Karate and Kickboxing to youth at risk under a special youth engagement program of my local city council.

LBS’ new partnership with the Singapore Institute of Management

Recently, La Trobe Business School and the Singapore Institute of Management (SIM) launched their new partnership for Bachelor of Business (Tourism and Hospitality) and Bachelor of Business (Event Management) Top Up programs in Singapore. Students with an accredited diploma or advanced diploma are given 12 subjects advanced standing, which requires a further 12 subjects to Top Up their qualification to a degree awarded by La Trobe University.

Some students of the first intake

The Bachelor of Business (Tourism and Hospitality) provides students with the skills needed for hospitality and tourism supervision with business management skills and an understanding of the dynamics of the tourism industry. The Bachelor of Business (Event Management) is designed to produce future leaders for the special events sector. It emphasises the application of theoretical knowledge and practical skills needed for the effective management of events.

The subjects are being taught by both LBS lecturers and SIM lecturers in intensive block mode, online, face-to-face and blended learning.

Paul Strickland, Programme Director of the Bachelor of Business (Tourism & Hospitality) said:

“The course has embedded the fundamentals of business plus tourism and hospitality subjects that prepare students for all aspects of the sectors. Students can then choose which direction they would like to pursue as there are no limits”.

Additionally, for the Bachelor of Business (Event Management), Paul stated:

“Working in the events sector leads to working in a variety of jobs including events management, human resourcing and volunteering. Students are prepared for managerial roles to oversee small community-based events and festivals but also large-scale mega-events”.

Two student intakes per year in both Top Up programs will occur in January and July from 2020.

Dining in the Dark during Orientation

LBS PhD Candidate Roshan on the benefits of conducting a PhD Industry internship

LBS Newsroom sat down with Roshan Kumar, an LBS PhD candidate who just successfully completed a PhD Industry internship.

Why did you decide to do a PhD Industry Internship?

I want to pursue an industry role after the completion of my PhD and joined this PhD industry Internship to get relevant experience for future roles as a Data Scientist. I wanted to learn relevant concepts, techniques and work with real-world data and problems. Since then, I have been lucky to learn a lot about data analysis and programming techniques in my internship and current role.

What did you have to do to get a PhD Industry Internship?

The idea of a PhD Industry Internship was suggested by my PhD supervisors. I was straight-away interested, so I contacted the Graduate Research School (GRS). The GRS connected me with APR.Intern (Australian Postgraduate Research Intern, formally AMSIIntern).

I had a very nice meeting with the APR.Intern representative and they kindly listened to my experiences, and my expectations regarding the internship. They proposed an internship at Environmental Monitoring Solutions (EMS) and guided me through the application procedure. I made a formal application with my updated resume and they arranged an interview with the organisation.

Did you have to do an official job interview?

Yes. A job interview was scheduled with EMS. I was provided general information regarding the interview, like what to expect, how to dress, etc. Both APR.Intern and GRS helped me a lot in getting prepared. They were available to guide and help at every stage of my internship.

Eventually, I appeared for a half an hour interview, which went well and resulted in me being selected for the internship at Environmental Monitoring Solutions, located at Carrum Downs, Melbourne.

What kind of internship did you do?

The primary objective of my project was to develop algorithms for dynamic reconciliation of fuel in underground storage tanks. I was analysing high-resolution data, identifying the trends and patterns and designing business solutions while considering limitations of data and resources in the project. I managed to achieve all the objectives set for the project well within the allocated time. This resulted in the extension of my contract after which I was offered an employment contract with the organisation.

Congratulations! How did the internship enrich your PhD experience?

My research at LBS is mainly quantitative in nature. This internship provided me with a great opportunity to diversify my experiences with quantitative data-driven work. It has also added to my local industry experience which I hope will be beneficial to my future pursuits. It also provided me a chance to work as a part of a collaborative team and helped me improve my communication skills.

What is your next step going to be career-wise?

Once I finish my PhD, I would like to continue working as a Data Scientist. I intend to keep learning and working on projects involving big data and machine learning. I believe that my past internship and my current role is preparing me well for future challenges in my career.

 

Roshan is a part-time PhD candidate at the La Trobe Business School. His research focuses on knowledge networking in healthcare. Roshan has an undergraduate degree in Engineering, a Masters in Business and loves to create sustainable solutions for responsible businesses. He enjoys working on data science projects, specialising in big data, machine learning and predictive modelling techniques).

Interested in a PhD Industry internship?

A PhD Industry internship is facilitated through APR.Intern and are approximately 4-5 months duration. The internship is paid and focuses on a clearly defined research project within an industry organisation. The organisation can be private sector, government, or not-for-profit. More info about applying for the La Trobe Industry PhD can be found here.

LBS Innovation Series: Join experts in a discussion about the future of food production and agribusiness

How often do you get to hear from world leading robotics and autonomous systems, cereal biology, food quality and crop productivity, and nutrition, digestion and nutrient bioavailability experts talking about the implications of their research for the future of food production and agribusiness? Not very often is the short answer.

This is the opportunity being offered at the 2018 LBS/NORTHLink Innovation in Food and Agribusiness Forum at La Trobe University on the 15th and 16th of November.

Internationally recognised experts

There are presentations from Professor Peter Corke from Queensland University of Technology, Professor Harsharn Gill from RMIT University, and Professor Tony Bacic from La Trobe University, each internationally recognised experts in their field.

  • Professor Peter Corke is a distinguished professor of robotic vision at QUT, and Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Robotic Vision. His research is concerned with enabling robots to see, and the application of robots to mining, agriculture and environmental monitoring. Peter is a fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering, a fellow of the IEEE, founding and associate editor of the Journal of Field Robotics, founding multi-media editor and editorial board member of the International Journal of Robotics Research, member of the editorial advisory board of the Springer Tracts on Advanced Robotics series.
  • 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.
  • Professor Tony Bacic is Director of the La Trobe Institute for Agriculture & Food (LIAF). He is an internationally recognized leader in plant biotechnology, with research 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. Prior to joining La Trobe (1996 to 2017) Tony was Personal Chair in the School of BioSciences at the University of Melbourne and leader of the Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence in Plant Cell Walls team (2011-2017). His other leadership roles include Director Bio21 Molecular Sciences & Biotechnology Institute, Chair ARC Biological Sciences and Biotechnology & LIEF (infrastructure) Panels and Chair Biological Sciences and Biotechnology Panel of the ERA (Excellence in Research Australia).

Besides these three, the forum presents many industry heavyweights as well such as Allan McCallum, Chair of Cann Group, James Fazzino, former CEO Incitec Pivot, and Andrea Koch from Principle Agtech.

Agricultural technology and science revolution

The agriculture industry is on the edge of a technology and science revolution and each of these outstanding individuals will share their research and discuss its application as a driver for the changing dynamics of the global food production and agribusiness.

However, more than a range of presentations, the 2018 LBS/NORTHLink Innovation in Food and Agribusiness Forum promotes two-way knowledge transfer and dialogue, interactive panels, case studies, opportunities for networking, masterclasses, and direct access to cutting edge science and technology experts.

 

Why not be part of this rare opportunity? You can learn more about the Forum and register by following this link:

www.latrobe.edu.au/events/all/innovation-in-food-and-agribusiness

 

This blog is part of the LBS Innovation Series, developed by Dr Mark Cloney, Professor of Practice in Economics in the La Trobe Business School. The series was developed after the successful National Innovation Forum organised by La Trobe Business School, NORTH Link and Deloitte Consulting P/L.

More blogs in the LBS Innovation Series:

Dream it, Plan it, Pitch it! Competition

LBS hosted the Dream it, Plan it, Pitch It! Competition as part of La Trobe University’s Outreach Programme for secondary school students.

What is outreach?

The LTU outreach programmes offer learning opportunities to Middle Year and VCE-level students. Students partake in workshops, seminars or other activities organised by LTU. It aids students’ confidence and learning skills at the relevant secondary curriculum level in a tertiary environment.

What is Dream it, Plan it, Pitch It!

In short, VCE students dream up an idea, develop a business plan and pitch it at LBS during the Pitch It! Competition.

The idea students develop can be for a business, product, or service. Then, either individually or in teams, students outline, develop and complete a full business plan as part of the VCE curriculum. Complementing the year 11 VCE curriculum, LBS asks students to submit their completed business plans and pitch their ideas to groups of roving judges during a showcase event. The business plans submitted to LBS are assessed and used as a qualifying tool for the showcase event. On the day, students pitch their 5-minute presentation to groups of industry professionals and LBS staff who assess their pitch.

The event is supported by Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ), who generously donate $1000 for the first-place winner. Second place receives $500 donated by the La Trobe Business School. Besides the first and second prize, there were various other subcategories of awards, such as the marketing plan award, the best stand award, and the financial award.

Some of the Pitch It! Competition judges

2018 Pitch It! Competition

There were competitions in Albury-Wodonga and in Melbourne and more than 100 students from seven schools participated. The first and second prize winners:

  1. Spartans Taekwando took out the first place with their idea – teaching martial arts through respect, discipline & leadership.
  2. Beauty Truck won the second place with their on the go beauty parlour.

Congratulations to the winners!

Pitch It! Competition participants

 

LBS students analysing data for better health outcomes

It’s one success after another for our Department of Accounting and Data Analytics! Besides being ranked in the top 75 universities in the world with our Master of Business Analytics (2019 QS Masters Rankings),  data analytics students made a huge impact during the Bendigo Health Datathon.

Bendigo Health Datathon

The Bendigo Health Datathon was part of the Bendigo Invention & Innovation Festival and organised by Bendigo Health in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), La Trobe University, University of Wollongong, Be.Bendigo and Australian New Zealand Intensive Care Society (ANZICS).

Critical Care Recovery

The Datathon brought together teams of clinicians, statisticians, data scientists and administrators to understand and explore the use of secondary healthcare data for better health outcomes. The theme of the Datathon was Critical Care Recovery, with the aim of exploring the health and community outcomes for patients after their journey through the hospital setting.

The participants developed innovative solutions to real problems by applying data analytics and statistical techniques to never-before-combined disparate data sets. The data sets included were:

  • ANZICS Adult Patient Database (APD
  • Victorian Admitted Episodes Dataset (VAED)
  • Victorian Emergency Minimum Dataset (VEMD)
  • Home and Community Care Program (HACC)
  • Victorian Cancer Registry (VCR)
  • Victorian Death Index (VDI)
  • Victorian Integrated Non-Admitted Health (VINAH)
  • Australasian Rehabilitation Outcomes Register (AROC)

LBS success

The students worked in different teams and produced some amazing insights. Besides the opportunity for our students to work alongside clinicians, doctors and health researchers, two of them took out the first and second prize at the Datathon. Congratulations to Mahesh Krishnan and Kriti Chhabra!

 

Find out more about our Master of Business Analytics

LBS Innovation Series – Is Australia prepared?

Professor of Practice in economics at LBS, Dr Mark Cloney, asks: what are the key drivers of innovation, disruption and opportunity in the global food production and agribusiness sectors? And why have the Dutch got it so right?

Changing consumer demand, particularly in Asia, corporatisation of farming, automation on farms and in processing, agtech and advances in the Internet of Things (IoT), digitalisation of supply chains, agricultural science advances, and the emergence of vertical farming are just some of the drivers changing the dynamics of the global food production and agribusiness[1].

The Netherlands

Are Australia’s food producers and agribusiness well-informed and placed to understand these challenges and to gain from the opportunities they offer? Countries like The Netherlands certainly are[2]. Despite its relative size, the Dutch are the world’s second largest exporter of agricultural products at $158 billion, or three times Australia’s exports[3]. Together with the USA and Spain, The Netherlands is one of the world’s three leading producers of vegetables and fruit supplying a quarter of the vegetables that are exported from Europe. Why? The Dutch are forward-looking, highly innovative and collaborative and have achieved worldwide recognition for their research, infrastructure and innovation systems. For example, Wageningen University and Research (WUR) is the number 1 agricultural university in the world for the third year in a row according to The National Taiwan Ranking of over 300 universities; while, 5 of the top 26 global agri-food companies have R&D facilities in The Netherlands[4].

Australia

So where does Australia stand in comparison? Nationally, the food and agribusiness sector employed approximately 522,000 persons and there were approximately 178,500 businesses trading in the sector (as at June 2015). According to the Australian Government’s Industry Innovation and Competitiveness Agenda[5], food production and agribusiness are areas of competitive strength for Australia. Australia’s food and agribusiness sector includes food-related agricultural production, food processing and the major inputs to these activities. This includes: food products, processing and beverage manufacturing as well as key inputs; and, agribusiness that relates directly to food production and their supply chains.

La Trobe’s AgriBio Centre

La Trobe University has demonstrated a strong commitment to helping Australia create a vibrant future for those involved in the production of food, fibre and agribusiness. La Trobe plays its role in building human capital and undertaking R&D and scientific research that supports the food and agribusiness innovation system. For example, La Trobe’s AgriBio Centre brings together world-class research in the largest agricultural R&D organisation in Victoria. La Trobe recently announced funding of $50 million for its new La Trobe Institute for Agriculture and Food focused on solutions for global food security.  La Trobe is also a founding member and financial contributor to Melbourne’s Northern Food Group a partnership with the Victorian government, 5 local governments, 4 tertiary institutes, Yarra Valley Water, Melbourne Innovation Centre, and the Melbourne Market Authority among others.

LBS/NORTHLink Innovation in Food and Agribusiness Forum

So how can Australia’s food producers and agribusiness prepare themselves against ever increasing disruption, and better collaborate with world class researchers and scientists in this field? These are some of the questions being explored at the Innovation in Food and Agribusiness Forum organised by LBS in partnership with NORTHLink. The focus of the Forum is on hearing from industry speakers of successful innovation in the food production and agribusiness sector. It will present industry and government perspectives on how we can continue to improve innovation in this sector, particularly for SMEs and start-ups operating in a global context.

In particular, the Forum offers an opportunity to explore how we create the right collaborative partnerships and environment for food production and agribusiness to succeed globally in an era of increased disruption. Maybe we just need some Dutch courage!

 

References:

 

This blog is part of the LBS Innovation Series, developed by Dr Mark Cloney, Professor of Practice in Economics in the La Trobe Business School. The series was developed after the successful National Innovation Forum organised by La Trobe Business School, NORTH Link and Deloitte Consulting P/L.

More blogs in the LBS Innovation Series:

Meet our new adjunct professor Stuart Kells

Prize winning author

Most people know Stuart is a successful author. He wrote the critically acclaimed biography of Kay Craddock, Rare, and Penguin and the Lane Brothers (Black Inc.), which won the Ashurst Australian Business Literature Prize. Stuart’s 2017 book The Library: A Catalogue of Wonders (Text) was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s General History Prize and is being published around the world. He also recently wrote a book with Professor Ian Gow on the history of the ‘Big Four’ accounting and audit firms, published by La Trobe University Press. Stuart’s shorter writings have appeared in a wide range of journals, magazines and newspapers, including The Australian Accounting Review, Economic Record, The Guardian, The Paris Review, The Times of London, The Australian Financial Review, The Australian and National Geographic Traveller Magazine.

Research and industry career

Not everybody might know that before becoming a successful author, Stuart used to be a Research Fellow at the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research at the University of Melbourne and a member of the Centre for Regulatory Studies at Monash University. He also had senior roles in the Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet, the Victorian Auditor-General’s Office, PPB Advisory and KPMG. He has a PhD from Monash University (for which he received the Monash Law Dean’s Award) and a B.Comm and an M.Comm, both with first class honours, from the University of Melbourne.

Besides becoming LBS’ adjunct professor, Stuart is a member of the Abbotsford Convent Foundation Board and the Audit and Risk Committee of Banyule Council.

 

Business Newsroom asked Stuart what brings him to LBS:

“My research and my books have three things in common. First, they are factual but use techniques from literary fiction, such as storytelling, and experiments with language and structure. I also write across disciplines, such as economics, finance, history, bibliography and cultural studies. Second, they are about nostalgia – for lost or threatened values, professions, institutions and objects. And third, they are irreverent and intent on busting myths.

These emphases align well with the work and mission of the La Trobe Business School and the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce. I’ve collaborated with a wide range of scholars and I’m eager to collaborate with the faculty and students of the School and the College.”

LBS welcomes Stuart on board!

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