In collaboration with

Date: 28 July, 2022
Time: 9am-4.30pm
Venue: Aerial UTS Function Centre, Sydney

After three years of natural disasters and pandemic, there’s a groundswell of demand for greening our urban world. And newfound respect for the terrible power of nature and the joy it can bestow when we get things right.

We need to protect and enhance biodiversity, our water quality, the air we breathe and our precious green trees, plants, parks and wetlands.

The big investors are on board. The Task Force on Nature-Related Financial Disclosure is on the way.

Megan Flynn, partner at leading climate advisory Pollination, recently told The Australian Financial Review that nature positive is “going to move faster than climate”.

“The one caveat is that it’s much more complex than climate.”

Tim King, chief investment officer of impact investor Melior Investment Management, said:

“I’m telling companies this is moving rapidly. Investor expectations are moving extremely rapidly, as are customers’ and employees’ expectations.”

Discover the fast drivers

We will uncover the new trends behind one of the most disruptive – and wonderful – influences coming our way: the elevation of nature to its rightful priority in our built environment. There’s fast-growing consumer appetite for nature everywhere – from the workplace to home. In the “war for talent” it just might be the glue that helps your organisation make your staff sticky.

Whether in the CBDs, suburbs or regions. (A free lunch or free dry cleaning might help too!)

Educate yourself

There is so much to learn about how to integrate strong plantings with buildings for instance. There’s how Melbourne rolled out its urban forest; what trees we can plant and where; how to manage plants in Sydney and Melbourne’s high wind tunnels, and how your beautifully selected greenery fares inside a nine-storey atrium or shopping centre.

Experts will generously share insights into their hard-won knowledge and practical applications in the hope that the whole industry can grow. (Did you know for instance that beautiful but powerful wisteria that can snap a steel cable?)

We will bring you case studies and the science behind the successes.


In a time of intense heat in our most important new housing zones, we will learn how trees and tree canopy can moderate the urban heat island effect. And we will look at the kinds of planning policies that can help.

Above all, we will learn how green infrastructure builds physical, mental and emotional resilience.

Investors, consultants and developers

If you are a major investor, or asset advisor, you need to understand the Task Force on Nature-Related Financial Disclosures – and more simply, the proven value uplift of nature. If you’re planning three to five years out, you need to make sure your offering is nature-competitive.


If you’re a council or state government you need to understand your voting constituents who are already suffering under 50 degree temperatures. You’ll need to manage the competing drives between tree lovers and tree loppers and how to encourage residents to say yes instead of no to the trees in their street that can provide canopy cover and lower temperatures.

Landscape architects, architects and designers

If you’re a designer or professional consultant to the built environment all of the above need to be in your new sandpit.

The concrete jungle is out. Green joy is in.


Jess Miller

Jess Miller

Event MC

Jess is city leader & communicator focused on climate adaptive, regenerative and resilient places. She served for five years on the City of Sydney Council as Councillor, Deputy Lord Mayor and Chair of the Environment Committee.

She led the Greener Spaces Better Places program on behalf of Hort Innovation and the Nursery & Garden Industry as part of the Republic of Everyone, and is a member of the TEDXSydney & Newtown Neighbourhood Centre boards.

She has led work within the Department of Industry Environment & Planning to promote living infrastructure within the Wianamatta South Creek precinct utilising collective impact principles and an indigenous-led, caring for country approach. 

Currently she is consulting on a range of projects focused on strategic approaches to cross-sector collaboration with a focus on vibrancy, renewable energy and resilience.

She is still celebrating the historic victory of the reigning AFL Premiers, the Melbourne Demons. 

Belinda Bean, Greener Spaces Better Places

Belinda Bean

Collective Impact Strategist, Greener Spaces Better Places

With her finger firmly on the pulse of societal and environmental trends, Belinda brings together diverse organisations around a shared goal for positive impact. Greener Spaces Better Places is a national initiative to ensure that as our cities and towns grow, so too do our green spaces.

Peter Bottero, Tensile Design & Construct

Peter Bottero

CEO, Tensile Design & Construct

Peter has been involved in tension structures for over 15 years and over that time has played a key role in the tensile architectural industry across Australia. In 2010 Peter founded Tensile Design & Construct to fulfill the growing need within the construction industry for a full service tensile solutions provider, one that combined the fields of design, engineering and construction. Tensile and Peter have proven to be leaders within the industry and specialist in regards to green facades, safety barriers and catenary cable structures. Peter’s core beliefs reside in collaboration, communication and measurable positive impacts. He has a genuine passion for architecture and construction with a drive to find creative solutions for the construction community.

Sacha Coles, ASPECT Studios

Sacha Coles

Director, Design + Strategy
ASPECT Studios
Registered Landscape Architect, AILA

Sacha is a Design and Strategy Director of ASPECT Studios. As a global design influencer, Sacha’s record of excellence in leading projects of transformational change spans placemaking, infrastructure, play space, academic, civic institutions, and green infrastructure.

Sacha is a collaborator who delivers innovative design within a social framework, reinforcing the role that cities can play in creating economic, social, and creative opportunity. Through his work, Sacha promotes uplifting quality of life, encouraging social equity and elevating the human spirit through design.

The projects he’s involved in aim to delight and embody positivity which challenge a ‘business as usual’ approach. His strength stems from his relationships with collaborators including leading artists, scientists and other specialists and the ability to work seamlessly in meaningful ways with multi-sector project partnerships.

He has been recognised as one of the top 30 Landscape Architects operating globally and he holds several advisory and board positions including the Inaugural Adjunct Professor of Landscape Architecture – UTS Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building, the UTS Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building Industry Advisory Board and the Inaugural NSW State Design Review Panel (SDRP) Pilot Program.

He a former board member of The Australian Design Centre and former president of the NSW Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA).

Angela Crossland, The GPT Group

Angela Crossland

National Social Sustainability Manager, The GPT Group

Angela Crossland is passionate about finding opportunities that create long term benefit for business and community. Currently the National Social Sustainability Manager at The GPT Group, Angela is responsible for GPT’s First Nations engagement, the GPT Foundation and building strong social value within the Group’s broader ESG strategy through a human rights lens. Prior to the property industry Angela worked in the non-profit sector and as a private investigator.

Beck Dawson, Resilient Sydney
Beck Dawson

Beck Dawson

Chief Resilience Officer, Resilient Sydney

Known as the “person paid to worry for Sydney”, Beck is the Chief Resilience Officer of Metropolitan Sydney at Resilient Sydney – a local government led program hosted by the City of Sydney and connected to the global Resilient Cities Network. 

100 Resilient Cities, pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation, and in Sydney hosted by the City of Sydney, helps cities to become more resilient to the physical, social, and economic challenges of the 21st century.

Resilient Sydney uses community-based research to identify risks to inform public policy and city-wide action on urban resilience and systems thinking. Launched in July 2018 with five directions and 35 actions for disaster risk reduction and better resilience planning for people in Sydney, the program is a collaboration of state government, business and the community including all 33 local government councils in metropolitan Sydney. 

Beck’s background in property includes a five-year stint at commercial real estate management and development service provider Investa as Corporate Sustainability Manager. 

Jefa Greenaway, Greenaway Architects

Jefa Greenaway (Wailwan|Kamilaroi)

Founder & Director, Greenaway Architects

Jefa Greenaway is founding Director of Greenaway Architects, a Senior Lecturer (University of Melbourne) | Honorary Fellow of Design (Deakin University), and a Cultural Ambassador for the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA). He’s championed Indigenous led design thinking for 30 years as a registered architect in NSW/VIC/ACT, as co-founder of Indigenous Architecture + Design Victoria, as co-author of the award winning International Indigenous Design Charter, as well as being a Regional Ambassador (Oceania) of INDIGO (International Indigenous Design Network)and currently sits on the NSW State Design Review Panel.

His practice is a founding signatory of Architects Declare Australia, an initiative that seeks to respond to issues related to climate change and biodiversity loss, explored through a diverse array of project work, incorporating educational, commercial, residential, cultural and urban design projects, with recent projects including the award winning Ngarara Place, the Koorie Heritage Trust as is currently working on the Marvel Stadium upgrade, and the Hobsons Bay Wetland Centre and the 11.1B North East Link Project. He was also a co-curator of the Australian exhibition at La Biennale Architettura di Venezia 2021 and was recently included in the Qantas 100 Inspiring Australians and was a 2020 inductee into the Design Institute of Australia’s (DIA) ‘Hall of Fame’ signifying an outstanding contribution to Australian design.

Laura Hamilton-O’Hara, Living Future Institute of Australia

Laura Hamilton-O’Hara

CEO, Living Future Institute of Australia

Laura has a Master’s Degree in Social Ecology and two decades of industry experience working in environmental sustainability and social justice in Australia and South Africa. A through line for Laura in all her work is sustainability leadership and systems thinking.

After several years in strategic roles at Taronga Zoo, Macquarie University and the Centre for Sustainability Leadership, Laura is currently the CEO of the Living Future Institute of Australia (LFIA). LFIA harnesses the built environment as a powerful vehicle to create a world that is socially just, culturally rich, and ecologically restorative.

Jane Hutchinson, Pollination Foundation
photo of jane hutchinson

Jane Hutchinson

Co-CEO, Pollination Foundation

Jane is a leader in nature conservation with over 20 years’ experience as an Executive and Non-Executive Director of multiple and varied conservation organisations including Accounting for Nature, The Nature Conservancy Australia Program, Australian Land Conservation Alliance, Midlands Conservation Fund and Tasmanian Land Conservancy. Jane is currently Chair of the Executive Council of the Protected Areas Learning and Research Collaboration (PAC) and is a member of the Australia Committee of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (ACIUCN).  Jane received a Barbara Thomas Fellowship in 2014, Harvard Club of Australia Fellowship in 2017 and was awarded Tasmanian Australian of the Year 2016 for her contribution to nature conservation.

Greg Ingleton, Sydney Water

Greg Ingleton

Segment Manager, Circular Economy, Western Sydney Development, Sydney Water

Greg Ingleton was a city dweller who became a farmer prior to becoming an environmental scientist with a focus on water. Greg has worked in the water industry for over 20 years, firstly in SA Water and now in Sydney Water. His role in Sydney Water is to implement greening and cooling projects, such as smart irrigation and air temperature sensor deployment, along with being part of the team tasked with developing integrated water cycle management for the Western Sydney growth areas. Greg is also a board member on the Green Adelaide Board, which focuses on providing strategic guidance for state and local government in Adelaide. Greg applies a “systems thinking” approach to water use, focusing on effective water use for multiple outcomes. This has led to the implementation of holistic, but relatively simple solutions to maximise the benefits from outdoor water use in our urban environment to reduce the impacts of urban heat islands, reduce energy usage, and improving liveability to ensure our communities are resilient against climate impacts now and into the future.

Nikos Kalogeropoulos, Molonglo
Nikos Kalogeropoulos

Nikos Kalogeropoulos

Director, Molonglo

Nikos Kalogeropoulos is a director at Molonglo. Nikos has extensive experience in ACT Government and was CFO of Territory and Municipal Services and the ACTION Transport Authority. This strength in economics is uniquely balanced by a wealth of knowledge and deep interest in philosophy and ancient history.

Steven Liaros, PolisPlan

Steven Liaros

Director, PolisPlan

Dr Steven Liaros is a polymath and futurist with expertise and qualifications in civil engineering, town planning, environmental law and political economy. He is an honorary associate at The University of Sydney and director of strategic town planning consultancy, PolisPlan. Steven is co-creating a new category of land development to enable a collaborative, affordable and sustainable mode of living in a connected network of Circular Economy Villages.

Sebastian Pfautsch, Western Sydney University

Sebastian Pfautsch

Associate Professor in Urban Studies, the Research Theme Coordinator at Western Sydney University

Sebastian is an Associate Professor in Urban Studies at Western Sydney University. He develops trans-disciplinary research around the complex issue of urban heat. He is the Director of SIMPaCT, a large-scale research project that will result in AI-operated park irrigation systems for optimal cooling during hot summers. He sits on the panel of Greening our City, works as independent advisor for the NSW Chief Scientist and Engineer and co-developed the first Handbook for Urban Green Infrastructure (UGI) for Standards Australia.

Sebastian has a Master in Forest Science and Management and a PhD in Tree Physiology. Both degrees were awarded from the University of Freiburg in Germany. For more than 15 years he studied the responses of trees and forests to gradual and extreme environmental impacts, including heat waves, drought, fire, changes in the atmospheric concentration of CO2 and declining groundwater tables. Sebastian investigated these responses in natural ecosystems across Australia and under controlled conditions in green houses and other research facilities, working from microscopic to landscape scales.

Five years ago, Sebastian joined Western Sydney University where he took up a Senior Researcher position with a focus on UGI. He begun applying his knowledge about the physiological functioning of trees and vegetation more broadly to an urban context. Since then, Sebastian studied the impact of climate change on cities and where the opportunities and limits of UGI are when mitigating increasing heat. Today his applied projects deal with heat mitigation far beyond UGI and include surface and building materials, engineered shade and water infrastructure, smart city technology and urban planning.

His high-quality research output is documented in the form of more than 90 peer-reviewed research papers, technical reports and journal articles. Sebastian’s work features regularly in the media, which in 2021 produced more than 350 headlines in 21 countries, was published in 5 languages and had a potential online reach of more than 1 billion people. Recent highlights were working with the BBC on the documentary “Life at 50C – Heat hitting home in Australia” and joining Kosta Georgiadis on ABC’s Gardening Australia program to explain the importance of urban trees for cooling.

John Rayner, The University of Melbourne
photo of john rayner

John Rayner

Associate Professor, Director of Urban Horticulture, The University of Melbourne

John is Director of Urban Horticulture at the Burnley Campus, University of Melbourne. John’s teaching and research interests centre on the design and use of plants, particularly in green infrastructure, public landscapes and in therapeutic horticulture. He helped establish the Green Infrastructure Research Group and has been actively researching green roofs and walls for almost 20 years. John recently published the Maintenance Guidelines for Australian Green Roofs and together with colleagues is completing the Australian Guide to Green Roof Plants. He is a passionate educator, has published widely and consults regularly on major landscape projects. John is also a keen gardener and in his spare time gains great joy from nurturing and torturing plants on his one-hectare garden in the Dandenong Ranges.

Kaylie Salvatori, COLA Studio

Kaylie Salvatori

Founding Director, COLA Studio

Yuin Saltwater woman, Kaylie Salvatori founded COLA Studio in 2021 as a response to landscape design and practice. An acronym for Country Oriented Landscape Architecture, COLA Studio is one of the very few Aboriginal owned studios in the Australian built environment industry. A passionate practitioner of Country centred design, Kaylie’s work amplifies the voice of Country and First Nations people through the design process and into the life of projects. Kaylie advocates strongly for greater First Nations representation in the built environment industry. 

“The built environment industry must recognise the role we play in shaping futures, for all – human or otherwise. In re-centering Country in our practice, we need to move beyond beautiful physical representations of culture and explore the many systems that we facilitate [or stunt] in our designs…in each step we need to ask, is this a positive for Country? How does this support the generations to come?”

Jan van der Bergh, Mulpha Australia

Jan van der Bergh

Senior Development Manager, Mulpha Australia

Jan van der Bergh has worked in the development sector for over 15 years, leading residential, mixed use and master planned developments in Sydney and London. As a Senior Development Manager for Mulpha Australia, Jan leads the team on Norwest Quarter, a project which will transform 3.8 hectares of greenfield land into a vibrant village centre consisting of nine residential towers containing 864 apartments and 6,000m2 of space provided for cafes, restaurants, neighbourhood shops and childcare facilities. Norwest Quarter is working to being Australia’s most ambitious zero carbon precinct, where apartments consume two thirds less energy, one third less water from the grid, are powered by 100% renewable electricity, and are designed to make it easy for anyone to live without sending waste to landfill.

Marci Webster-Mannison, MDS

Marci Webster-Mannison

Architect, Melbourne Design Studios (QLD & NSW)

Marci is Head of MDS (Melbourne Design Studios) in Queensland and New South Wales. Marci’s award-winning architecture and urban design address climate change adaptation at the tipping point of our collective future. We will visit buildings and landscapes that animate the criticality of water in this dry arid continent. We will look at how creeks may breathe life back into communities and inform the reorganisation of the fabric of climate resilient neighbourhoods.

Sara Wilkinson, UTS

Sara Wilkinson


Sara is a chartered building surveyor and Australia’s first female Professor of Property. Prior to joining academia, Sara worked in the public and private sector. Sara has developed and lead building surveying and property programs in the UK and Australia. Her transdisciplinary research program sits at the intersection of sustainability, urban development and transformation, with a focus on green cities and preparing our urban environments for the challenges of climate change. She is interested in using new technologies to deliver sustainable building outcomes. Sara works with academic and industry partners in engineering, science, health and business to deliver housing, building adaptation, sustainability, resilience, and green infrastructure projects. Current projects include Decarbonising the built environment with hempcrete and green walls, The Wallbot, VR & Willingness to Pay for Green Infrastructure in residential development and Fraser Fairwater Development: Commerciality Evaluation.

Early bird sale ends 30 June

Register now to save!


9.00amIndigenous Knowledge – and its practical influence on urban planning and urban greening. We’ll look at the lessons from First Nations People about working with nature and how developers, government and planners are collaborating with Indigenous thinkers and designers to create deeper understanding of the nature of this challenging continent, garnered through millennia. There will be a big focus on Western Sydney where the state is planning to house more than 2million people and establish a thriving commercial zone around the new airport.
10am Water is life – and a big investment opportunity
How to efficiently capture water, store it and change our use of water to enhance biophilia and urban greening. And on the investment front there’s a booming business globally in how to detect leaks with pinpoint accuracy and expand our water management technology as access to water becomes a critical geo-political issue.
11.00amMorning tea
11.30amWeather Shield – climate threats and how nature can protect us
We will hear from experts how to create resilience – physical, mental and emotional – with well designed indoor and outdoor green infrastructure. Not to mention stronger asset values. We’ll hear about the science that underpins the reality for our communities and how developers and governments need to anticipate our future and prepare. Leading developers will show you how they are changing the game in office, industrial, residential and retail property.  
2pmTrees, plants and equity 
Let’s explore the mystery and power of trees. We’ll go deeper too, looking at their relationship to equity, their economic (leafy suburbs cost more) and social impacts (how is it that low income areas lack trees and plants?). And why they’re misunderstood: for instance, if you water trees they will behave and won’t break through the pavement or get into your sewerage. Plants: how do we bring lush greening into areas where you can’t have trees?  
3pmThe Power and the Passion (Governance and Investment)

5A: Power (investment) – how do we pay for this thing?
Large institutional investors and their advisors can fund the new green order towards a nature positive world. How will the Task Force on Nature Related Financial Disclosure (TCND) affect their frameworks and are we ready? What are the insurers thinking about vast swathes of our country exposed to fire, flood and drought? Not so long ago NSW was about to evacuate 90 towns because of water shortages. Recently the problem has been the opposite.  
3.45pm 5B: Passion (governance)Natural Order or Rule of Law? Let’s finish with a blast of radical thinking. We need greater, more exciting innovation in landscape architecture. Can we rewild the city, free up the pavements for plantings – green and edible? Can professional landscape designers and forward-thinking clients persuade local government, state governments and “embedded historical engineering wisdom” to loosen the reins and free up the range of beautiful outcomes that will be loved by all?  
4.30pmNetworking drinks on the terrace


TicketsEarly bird
(ends 30 June)
TFE Members, Event partners (incl: AILA/UTS/LFI)  $295$375
General Admission$395$495
Group (table of 6)$2100 (save $270)$2620 (save $350)
Includes event, morning tea, hot lunch, and network drinks

Venue and Directions

Bar and terrace for networking and views to the UTS’ Alumni Green, biodiversity roof and Central Park’s green wall.

  • Aerial UTS Function Centre, Level 7, UTS Building 10. Enter at 235 Jones St Ultimo Foyer, take the lift to level 7 and proceed to the Function Centre.
  • Car park entrance is accessed from Thomas St (travelling West), with lift access to level 7.
  • Metered street parking is available in Thomas Street but limited.
  • Aerial is a 5-minute walk from Central Railway Station and 15 minutes to Sydney CBD.
  • The airport is a 30-minute drive (allow for Traffic).
  • Public buses run regularly to the City from Broadway.
  • Broadway Shopping Centre is a 5-minute walk along Broadway to the West.