Ozri 2014

Ozri 2014 day two plenary:

After a massive first day at Ozri – and an incredible evening of wining, dining and music on the lawns of Glen Ewin Estate (Mark Seymour made the crowd go wild!) – most people were in need of a Berocca this morning. Thankfully, MapData Services came to the rescue, cleverly handing out a Berocca Twist ‘N’ Go to everyone first thing this morning!

MDS Berocca

Powered up with vitamin B, the morning plenary kicked off with gusto. Esri Australia Professional Services Executive Manager Jeff Robinson opened the show and welcomed our first presenters, Juanita Joy and Peter Reyne – special guests from Queensland’s Department of Natural Resources and Mines (DNRM). They ran us through DNRM’s online stock route management system, which received a Special Achievement in GIS Award at the Esri International User Conference, held in San Diego earlier this year.


The system was implemented by the Queensland Government to streamline the permit process for graziers and local councils in the state. With the user-friendly web application helping to maintain and manage stock routes, as well as speeding up the overall permit application process, it’s ‘organic’ and ‘pure GIS’ all rolled into one.

Next up was one of the most anticipated plenary sessions of Ozri 2014. Nathan Bennett – visiting from Redlands, California – is one of the finest GIS minds of our generation.

Nathan Bennett

Hearing him discuss the technology and how it can work for an organisation (he used the example of an imaginary Australian insurance giant) was inspiring to say the least, and it seemed like we weren’t the only people in the room swept up with his passion for the spatial world.

Veteran Ozri presenter Kellie Persson carried on the ‘pure GIS’ vibe with more real-world success stories about ArcGIS users from around the country who are creatively using the platform to make a difference in their organisations and the broader community. The creativity that people pull from this technology never ceases to amaze, and we’re sure plenty of audience members took away some tips – we sure did.

Stories form the grapevine

We found her story on Life Saving Victoria particularly interesting; they’ve used GIS technology to help prevent drowning incidents across the state. Sadly, people who live in regional areas are 1.5 times more likely to drown than those in major cities. Surf Life Saving Victoria use GIS to create excess risk maps – and help prevent these drownings through targeted education and marketing campaigns.

With time running out on the last plenary for Ozri 2014, another ‘stream spruiking’ session was definitely in order. Some of yesterday’s presenters – Ebony Wickramanayake and Gary Johnson – joined Kellie and Richard Stokes for a 20-minute run-through of the technical streams on offer in the afternoon.

And that’s it for the plenary – it’s time to break away for the final action-packed day!

Alicia K & Ben D

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