CEO's Report February 2019


  Peter Olah



Welcome to 2019.This will be a big year for SSSI and a year of change and disruption. Yes, they keep coming!
The surveying and geospatial industries have been rocked by disruption – and have created some disruption ourselves – for many years. The ongoing emergence of new and revolutionary spatial technologies and professions is an ever-present challenge and opportunity. The omnipresence of spatial data in modern life is also both a disruptor and a significant opportunity.
Of course, some challenges and disruptions have different origins. It is no secret that the relationships between the major representative organisations in surveying and spatial – including SSSI – have not always been perfect. We have seen over the last two decades the harsh reality of relationships torn by divisions based on personality, policy and power. This has often been to the detriment of the organisations and the people they represent.
Many of these problems have been addressed over the last several years with the creation of bilateral Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs); documents designed  to focus on shared values and aspirations for our industry and the people who make it work. And these MoUs have succeeded in encouraging a more professional and peaceful dialogue, without radically changing the landscape or providing a more unified voice for surveying and geospatial professionals.
Over the last year, the SSSI Board – along with the leaders of several of our partner organisations in Australia and overseas – has asked the question, “is this enough?”.  
The answer, generally agreed by all, is that we must do better. Our members, and all of the people in our sector, deserve to be represented in a way that delivers the best possible outcomes for the people in it. Doing so is not about mergers or changing organisations or shutting them down, but about a commitment to working together beyond shared values, on shared strategic goals and projects.
Right now we are in discussions with several of our partner organisations, here and overseas, about new MoUs to strengthen the relationships by focusing not just on values, but on shared projects. These projects will see us actively collaborate towards better outcomes for all our members, and all in the sector. Several of these MoUs will be finalised and announced in coming months.
It is not yet new era, but perhaps one is in sight.


Kelly Rischmiller, SSSI’s Queensland ROM, departed in mid-January to take up a new role at the University of Queensland. Kelly had been with SSSI for seven years in both NSW and Queensland and will be missed for her corporate knowledge and high level of commitment to SSSI and our members.

Following a public recruitment process which identified several strong candidates, I am pleased to advise that Katie Le Miere, our previous Queensland Events & Administration Officer, accepted the Queensland ROM role and commenced last week. In addition to her contribution to SSSI over the past 18 months, Katie has over 15 years’ experience in events and stakeholder management and I am looking forward to working with her in this new position.


Peter Olah
Chief Executive Officer
Surveying & Spatial Sciences Institute (SSSI)

Telephone:  +61 7 3367 0262
 Address:  3/18 Kilroe St, Milton QLD 4064  |