A Few Words

About Us

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19-21 October 1997


Hyatt Hotel, Canberra

Conference dinner and Sir Reginald Ansett Memorial Lecture: Hyatt Hotel Ballroom (North – dinner and South – lecture)


Ansett Australia – Shell Company of Australia – Department of Transport and Regional Development – Airservices Australia – British Airways – Boeing Commercial Airplane Company – Kendell Airlines – Australian Parachute Federation – Regional Airlines Association of Australia – The Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators – Civil Aviation Safety Authority – Bureau of Air Safety Investigation – Department of Defence – Philippine Airlines – Japan Airlines – El Al Israel Airlines – Air New Zealand – Qantas Airways – McDonnell Douglas Space Systems Company – Orient Airlines Association

Keynote speaker

Dr William Gaubatz

McDonnell Douglas Space Systems Company on the Delta Clipper project: Sir Reginald Ansett Memorial Lecture

DC XA concept

Safeskies 1999 banner

Conference theme: ‘Setting the right aviation safety culture’

The Hon Mark Vaile, Minister for Transport and Regional Development opened the conference (the Hon John Sharp, listed on the program, resigned as minister in October 1997). This was followed by two keynote addresses: ‘Safety’ from Dr Roland Williams, chairman and CEO of Shell Australia, and ‘Setting the right aviation safety culture’ from John Nance, the 1993 inaugural conference keynote speaker.

Other day 1 sessions covered safety culture in the airlines and the regulatory bodies, and Dr Graham Edkins, from the Bureau of Air Safety Investigation (BASI) spoke on ‘New ideas in safety management, a case study of a regional airline’.

Day 1 concluded with three concurrent workshops: ‘New ideas in safety management and human factors’, ‘Technology and airworthiness’ and ‘Airspace management’.

Day 2 speakers addressed operational airline safety improvements (in the Israeli national airline, El Al); airport and ramp safety issues (Air New Zealand); Defence safety; and aircrew training. A second series of concurrent workshops examined: ‘Safety within the aircraft’, ‘Airport and ramp safety’ and ‘Aviation security issues’.

For more detail, see the 1997 program.

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Dr Sue Burdekin

Life member of Safeskies from 2020

Most recently, Dr Sue Burdekin was the Aviation Program Coordinator in ADFA’s School of Engineering and Information Technology. She is a highly credentialled academic and researcher in human factors; and has been a senior lecturer in human factors and aviation safety since 2001. She has had experience in GA management and is a commercial pilot. She is a committee member of the Royal Aeronautical Society, a member of the European Association for Aviation Psychology, the Australian Aviation Psychology Association, the International Society of Air Safety Investigation, the Australian Women Pilots’ Association (a former state president), and a former board member of Safeskies.

She and her partner, Dr Robert (Rob) Lee, were regular speakers at Safeskies, bringing their wide-ranging and considerable human factors expertise to the conferences.