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Australia-Indonesia Leaders Program

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Monash and MSDI host Australian-Indonesian leadership delegation for dialogue on future cities

On Thursday 25 May, Monash Sustainable Development Institute's Urban Water Cluster hosted delegates from Australia and Indonesia, as part of the Australia-Indonesia Leaders Program.

Delivered twice annually over 10 days across Jakarta, Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney, up to 30 delegates from government, business, academia, and media participate in the program which aims to develop strong relationships between future leaders from both nations as they move into national leadership positions.

The program was originally launched in 2015 as an initiative of the AIC in partnership with Indonesia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.    

The program theme for 2017 was 'Future Cities' as the future economic prosperity of Indonesia and Australia will be greatly influenced by how its respective cities manage resources in the face of rapid urbanisation.

Whilst at Monash University, delegates explored how cities of the future could look and operate, by comparing a Water Sensitive Design approach to water management with developed city investments in infrastructure to deliver supply, sewerage and drainage.

Dr Briony Rogers and Professor Diego Ramirez-Lovering explained how Water Sensitive Urban Design can help developing cities leapfrog from older water technology straight to clean, green technology as future cities will need to adapt to increased climate challenges of storms and flooding. Delegates also had the opportunity to visit Monash University's CAVE2 where Dr Christian Urich presented an immersive visualisation experience simulating impact of rising water levels in the Melbourne suburb of Elwood in the year 2065.

Six Monash PhD candidates who are part of the Water and Sustainability in Asia Graduate Research Interdisciplinary Program focusing on Indonesia also presented their research to the delegates providing opportunity for feedback and potential future collaboration. Delegates also visited Melbourne's Docklands precinct for a walking tour hosted by Michelle Isles, Sustainability Integration Manager from City of Melbourne, and were able to see how Water Sensitive Urban Design has been implemented in a real-wold context in the different stages of the Docklands development. 

The day finished with a VIP dinner hosted by the City of Melbourne which included guest speakers Cr Kevin Louey, Deloitte's Bernadus Djonoputro, Melbourne's Chief Resilience Officer Toby Kent, MSDI Chair Prof. John Thwaites, Urban Water Cluster Leader Dr Briony Rogers and Director of CoDesign Studio Lucinda Hartley.