Professor Abbas Rajabifard, Head of the Department of Infrastructure Engineering at the University of Melbourne, welcomed distinguished guests from across disaster management and public safety domains, both national and international, to the official launch of the new Centre for Disaster Management and Public Safety (CDMPS) on April 29, 2014 at the International Public Safety Conference (APCO Australasia 2014) held in Melbourne.
Since the University of Melbourne’s partnership with IBM Australia last year to develop and progress the Australian Disaster Management Platform (ADMP), a decision was made to establish a focused research hub to conduct multi-disciplinary research and training on disaster management and public safety. As part of the Department of Infrastructure Engineering’s role in leading ADMP, they have established the CDMPS on behalf of the University. The Centre will be led by Professor Abbas Rajabifard as Director.
Victorian Emergency Management Commissioner (Designate), Mr Craig Lapsley, officially declared the Centre open, providing a succinct overview of the Centre, as well as his vote of support. The CDMPS will play a key role in forging new relationships and collaborations in the realm of disaster management and public safety.
Presentations at the Next Generation of Disaster Management and Public Safety Workshop, that followed the launch, included a showcase of the Intelligent Disaster Decision Support System (IDDSS) – a project led by Infrastructure Engineering and funded by the Justice Department. Flood and bushfire scenarios were shown and the capabilities of IDDSS explained. An industry panel comprising industry representatives from IBM, APCO, Victoria Police and VicRoads provided insight into the future pathways for disaster management.