Smarter Cities Challenge Melbourne


Front row: Elaine Murphy, Waya Araos-Wijangco (Australian Business Volunteers), Sandeep Goel.  Back row:  Jon Birdsall, Liz Hampton (New Zealand CC&CA manager), Becky Carroll, Chris Molloy, Mahesh Ramanayake.

It is hard to believe that we have completed a full week in our assignment here in Melbourne!  It is even more difficult to believe that in this group of six over achieving IBMers, it is the Finance guy who is the first to pick up the blog pen !!  Must be a sign of how busy we have been and how much there is here to distract us…..

Our task is to help the City of Melbourne minimize the impact of emergency events on health, safety, infrastructure, and economic activity – focusing on communications to the city’s inhabitants, before, during, and after a disruptive event.

After starting the week with a welcome session hosted by the Lord Mayor Robert Doyle, the City CEO Ben Rimmer, and 70 invited guests, we toured the State of Victoria’s Emergency Management control center.  Without much of a pause, the rest of the week was spent conducting over 25 interview sessions with more than 40 City of Melbourne and State of Victoria officials, professionals, and community leaders.  It’s amazing to see how quickly six IBMers from different countries, backgrounds, and professions came together effectively and efficiently.


Melbourne City Town Hall, our base of operations for Week 1.

More importantly, we discovered what an amazing city Melbourne is – full of youth and diversity, friendly people, beautiful weather, and endless food and entertainment options.


Yummy ???


Street art all over town.       

We have explored parks and river fronts, alleyways and museums, concerts and shopping, the ocean and even one of us found herself diving with sharks!


View of City of Melbourne at night – people always out, enjoying the city.


View of Port Phillip from St. Kilda Beach, a 15 minute trolly ride from Melbourne city center.



Filed under Melbourne - Australia

2 responses to “Smarter Cities Challenge Melbourne

  1. Nice to see Liz there again! Good luck , team!

  2. Jade Moffat

    Thanks for your post, Jon. So pleased to hear that you are enjoying yourselves in Melbourne and the weather has even been welcoming!!

    Best wishes for the remainder of your time here.

    Jade Moffat
    Corporate Citizenship Manager, Australia