Redefining the Scope of "Humanitarian Engineering"


Humanitarian engineering is commonly perceived as the provision of infrastructure and associated services for people in need, particularly encompassing activities such as disaster relief. However, with the broadening of understanding that engineering education and experience are valid paths to leadership and management of any enterprise, there is now good evidence supporting the value of an engineering perspective on the management and leadership of humanitarian enterprises – whether or not those enterprises involve what is commonly construed as “engineering”.

A recently published case study documented by the speaker identifies, in particular, the constructive influence of an understanding of complex and enterprise systems on the successful delivery of a school construction and teacher training initiative in Afghanistan. This and similar projects demonstrate the value of engineering insight, perspective, focus and judgement in the leadership and management of humanitarian enterprises.

  Date and Time




  • Date: 14 Jun 2018
  • Time: 06:00 PM to 07:30 PM
  • All times are (GMT+10:00) Australia/NSW
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  • 8 Thomas St
  • Chatswood, Sydney, New South Wales
  • Australia 2067
  • Building: Engineers Australia
  • Room Number: Harricks Auditorium

  • Co-sponsored by Engineers Australia and The IET


Rob Mitchell Rob Mitchell of Indigo Foundation


During 40 years with the Electric Energy Industry Rob occupied a range of middle and senior executive level positions. In 1996 he co-founded Power Business Resources, consulting to the Electric Energy Industry and other infrastructure development initiatives. He has travelled widely throughout Asia and the Pacific Islands studying the developments taking place in the Electricity Supply Industries of these territories, and developing infrastructure ventures for both commercial purposes and NFP organisations.

 From 2004 to 2010 Rob lectured in the MPM program for the University of Adelaide. He was inaugural Chairman of the Sydney Chapter of CELM.  For 22years, in various capacities, he has led project teams working with NGO’s on international development assistance projects. This experience demonstrated the value of an enterprise system perspective for such activity, an approach which he brought to his positions as General Manager, Director and life member of indigo foundation.

Address:Sydney, New South Wales, Australia