Important Dates

Author notification deadline:

Author registration deadline:

27th to 31st October



City of Mandurah

Lotteries West



Keynote Speakers


Day 1 – Tuesday 28th October

Nick Harvey


Professor Nick Harvey

Director, Centre for Coastal Research
The University of Adelaide

Professor Nick Harvey is currently the President of the Australian Coastal Society and Director of the Centre for Coastal Research at the University of Adelaide. Nick was one of the Lead Authors for the 4th Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which in 2007 was jointly awarded the Nobel Peace prize together with Al Gore.

Nick has over 35 years experience in coastal research and teaching with research interests in coral reefs, coastal dunes and coastal geology. Nick also worked for the South Australian Government in the late 1980s and was a member of its Coast Protection Board for 7 years.
Nick has had a long involvement with scientific global change research. He has written around 200 scientific papers, book chapters and books including Global Change and Integrated Coastal Management in the Asia-Pacific Region (2006) plus the only comprehensive book on Coastal Management in Australia (2003) which he co-wrote with Brian Caton.

Dr Susanne Moser


Dr Susanne Moser

Director & Principal Researcher
Susanne Moser Research & Consulting

Dr. Susanne Moser is Director and Principal Researcher of Susanne Moser Research & Consulting, in Santa Cruz, CA, USA, a Social Science Research Fellow at Stanford’s Woods Institute for the Environment, and a Research Associate of the Institute for Marine Sciences at the University of California-Santa Cruz. As a nationally and internationally recognized expert in climate change adaptation, communication for social change, and science-policy interactions, she works with researchers, governmental and non-governmental organizations in the US, Europe and Australia. Dr. Moser is a geographer (Ph.D. 1997, Clark University) with broad interdisciplinary expertise, and previously held positions at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, the Heinz Center in Washington, DC, and the Union of Concerned Scientists.

She currently or has in the past served on scientific and advisory boards for Future Earth, IHDP, the US National Research Council, and numerous other agencies and organizations. She contributed to the Fourth and Fifth Assessment Reports of the IPCC and served as a Review Editor for the IPCC Special Report on extreme events, disaster risk management and adaptation. She also is a member of the federal advisory committee on the Third US National Climate Assessment, co-leads that committee's Engagement and Communication working group, and serves as one of the Convening Lead Authors on the assessment's coastal chapter. She is a fellow of the Aldo Leopold Leadership, Kavli Frontiers of Science, Donella Meadows Leadership, Google Science Communication, and Walton Sustainability Solutions Programs.

Lynne Hale


Lynne Zeitlin Hale

Managing Director for Oceans,
The Nature Conservancy

Lynne Zeitlin Hale has more than 30 years of experience in marine and coastal ecosystem conservation and management. She currently serves as the Managing Director for Oceans for The Nature Conservancy. Over the last decade, she has led the development of TNC’s marine programs which integrates science and policy work with “in-the-water” conservation and restoration in the United States and more than 30 countries in Asia, Oceana, the Caribbean, South America, and Africa. Areas of focus for TNC’s marine programs include Sustainable Fisheries, Integrated Ocean Management, and Climate Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction. Lynne also serves as the NGO representative on the Board of the Marine Stewardship Council and is Co-leading the Habitat Community of Practice for the Global Partnership for the Ocean.

Previously, as the Associate Director of the Coastal Resources Center at the University of Rhode Island, Lynne played a leadership role in the design and implementation of integrated coastal management programs in the United States, South America, Asia, and Africa, as well as globally oriented outreach and training programs. From 1978-84 she served as the Senior Fisheries Adviser for the Alaska Native Foundation. Coastal issues and topics on which she has worked and published include: community-based and co-management of marine resources; national coastal policy and plan development; tourism development planning; marine protected areas; coral reef management; shorefront development and disaster risk reduction; and ecosystem-based adaptation.

In 2008, her contributions to marine conservation were recognized when she received NOAA’s Walter B, Jones Memorial Award as the Coastal Steward of the Year.

Enzo Pranzini


Professor Enzo Pranzini

Professor of Physical Geography & Geomorphology
University of Florence (Italy)

Enzo Pranzini is a Full Professor of Physical Geography and Geomorphology at the University of Florence (Italy). He is the editor of numerous publications related to land use and management, beach monitoring, coastal geomorphology and coastal engineering. Enzo is a lecturer on Climatology, Physical Geography, Coastal Geomorphology, Remote Sensing and Shore Protections. In 2012 he was appointed scientific coordinator of the ExpoMaster in Integrated Marine Coastal Zone Management for IUSS (Italy), Tonji University (China) and Chonnam University (Korea).

He is the author of approximately 230 publications and books and editor of Italy’s coastal engineering and monitoring magazine ”Studi Costieri” which publishes articles on geology and engineering, covering coastal dynamics and protection to integrated coastal zone management. His research work focuses on beach monitoring techniques, the efficacy of coastal defence interventions, the morphological and sedimentological evolution of protected beaches, and climate change impacts on beaches. Through his Department he develops coastal protection and adaptation solutions and beach monitoring programs for public agencies of the Tuscan, Sardinia and Liguria regions. Consultancy to the Asian Development Bank (Shore protection in India) and Western Australian administrations are some of his most recent consultations. Professor Enzo Pranzini will be speaking as a keynote at the upcoming NSW Coastal Conference in Ulladulla.


Day 2 – Wednesday 29th October

Dr Charles Lester


Dr Charles Lester

Executive Director
California Coastal Commission, San Francisco, CA

Charles Lester is the fourth Executive Director to lead the California Coastal Commission since its creation in 1972. The mission of the Coastal Commission is to protect and enhance California’s coast and ocean for present and future generations through careful planning and regulation of environmentally-sustainable development, rigorous use of science, strong public participation, education, and effective intergovernmental coordination.

Prior to his appointment as Executive Director in September, 2011, Charles served as the Senior Deputy Director of the Commission, holding that position since 2006. He has been working at the Commission since 1997. Previously, Dr. Lester was an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Colorado, Boulder, teaching environmental law and policy, and focusing on public lands governance and coastal zone management.

Dr. Lester received his Ph.D in Jurisprudence and Social
Policy from the University of California at Berkeley. In addition, he earned his J.D. at Boalt Hall School of Law and a B.A. in Geochemistry from Columbia University.

Professor Allan Williams


Professor Allan Williams

University of Wales Trinity St David

Allan has undergraduate degrees in geology (Birmingham university) and geography (London university) plus a doctorate in coastal geomorphology (Hong Kong university). He has published around 300 scientific papers and 5 books. Academic interests span through all aspects of coastal issues; current ones include beach rotation aspects, cliff erosion, coastal and beach management, litter and scenery. He has worked extensively in Europe, Far East and North America. He also sits on several committees in the UK, e.g. National Aquatic Litter Group; as well as several editorial boards, e.g. Journal of Coastal Research, is a past editor of the Journal of Coastal Conservation, and a Founder member of the Medcoast Organisation.

He has been a Visiting Professor at Solent University, UK; Ocean University, Qingdao China; University of Virginia, USA; Research Scientist, International Hurricane Centre, Florida International University, Miami, Florida, USA; and an Erskine Fellow, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand. For the media, he has made several TV documentaries on coastal/flood problems, plus radio broadcasts. His hobbies are writing ’thriller’ as well as children’s books, wood carving, playing in a samba band, stained glass window making. He is also a qualified coach in cricket, athletics, badminton, swimming; Royal Life Saving Association Distinction Award; Judo black belt, Qualified SCUBA diver, survival skills Instructor

Professor Jan McDonald


Professor Jan McDonald

Associate Dean (Research)
University of Tasmania

Jan McDonald is Professor of Environmental Law and Associate Dean (Research) at University of Tasmania’s Faculty of Law, with expertise in the legal and policy dimensions of coastal adaptation. She previously held roles as Director of the Griffith Climate Change Response Program and Professor of Environmental Law at the Griffith University and in 2007 was Establishment Director of the National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility. Jan is currently a member of the Tasmanian Climate Action Council and was a Contributing Author to the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report.

Alessio Mariani


Alessio Mariani

Coastal and Environmental Engineer

Alessio is passionate about the ocean and the coast. Relishing the complexity of the coastal environment, Alessio has spent the last 15 years observing, modelling and interpreting coastal and ocean processes in the field, in the laboratory and using numerical tools. 

Along the way, he was awarded a Churchill Fellowship in 2011, which allowed him to travel around the world studying international approaches to the management of beach erosion during 2012.  Following the prestigious award, in 2013 Alessio undertook an eminent speaker tour of Australia at the invitation of the Engineers Australia Civil College for the “2013 Engineers Australia Eminent Speaker Series”.

While at the Water Research Laboratory of the University of New South Wales, for the last 8 years Alessio has lead applied research and consultancy projects working together with governments, research institutes, business partners as well as private organisations.  His most interesting work in the fields of coastal and ocean processes and coastal stabilisation has been published in specialty journals and conference publications.

Alessio received masters degrees in Ocean and Environmental Engineering from leading European universities: the Politecnico of Milan, Italy and the Ecole Centrale of Nantes, France.  Of Italian, Indonesian and Chinese origins, Alessio first arrived in Australia to undertake fundamental research in physical oceanography on Perth beaches with the Centre for Water Research of the University of Western Australia in 2004.  He immediately fell in love with Australia, its beaches, the surf and never left since then.

Barry Sammels


Barry Sammels

City of Rockingham

Barry is the Mayor of the City of Rockingham, Western Australia.

First elected to the role of Mayor in May 2003, he has been a Councillor for 18 years.
Barry is on numerous committees and Patron of many organisations. He is a Life Member of the Rockingham Chamber of Commerce, Rockingham Trade Centre Association and Lynwood Ferndale Amateur Football Club. Barry is the National Chairman of the Sea Change Taskforce.

Barry was the proprietor of Parkin Print, a successful local printing business, for 30 years and sold the business in 2009. Barry was awarded the 1998 Regional Small Business Awards Winner and in 1990 State Finalist in Small Business Awards.

Barry was recognised at the Local Government Honours Awards on 1 August 2012 where he received the Long and Loyal Service Award. The award recognises community representatives for their willingness to get involved in their local communities and have an impact on improving the lives of those around them.

Barry lives in Rockingham with his wife Karen and sons Garth 30 and Joel 28. He is a keen gardener and enjoys football, entertaining, politics and family.

Karin Strachan


Karin Strachan

Manager of Strategy and Corporate Communications
City of Rockingham

Karin is the Manager of Strategy and Corporate Communications at the City of Rockingham, and has been working at the City for 5 years.

Prior to joining the City, Karin worked in the private Sector. She started out as a Research and Development Scientist (with a PhD in Chemistry) at a large Petrochemical Company in South Africa. Following the completion of her MBA degree in project Management, she moved into the world of Strategy Development, Business Optimisation, Workshop Facilitation and Scenario Development.

She was responsible for co-ordinating the City’s response to Climate change, and will be giving a short overview on the City’s approach.

Karin lives in Mandurah with her husband and three kids. She enjoys doing endurance sport.

Clive Attwater


Clive Attwater

SGS Economics & Planning

Clive has developed strong strategic planning and analytical skills while working for more than 24 years as a management consultant. He joined SGS Economics & Planning in 2001. Areas of specialisation with SGS have been strategic planning, project evaluation and project financial evaluation, development, land use and development studies, cost benefit studies, environmental economics, urban renewal, public housing and affordable housing, housing and commercial market and demand assessments, regional economic development and public consultation processes. He has worked extensively overseas as well as in Australia.

Clive leads the coastal climate change response for SGS. Clive has been the project director or manager on numerous of coastal climate change and similar projects, making him a recognised leader in the field. He has authored or contributed to numerous papers on climate change impacts and related issues, and is regularly invited to conferences and forums as a key note speaker on policy issues related to planning and adaptive response.


Day 3 – Friday 31st October


Simon (Nageon) de Lestang


Simon (Nageon) de Lestang

Churchill Fellow
Department of Fisheries

I have over ten years of post-doctoral experience as a team leader / researcher at a range of institutions including Murdoch University, Challenger TAFE, the Department of Fisheries, WA. Currently I am the Principal Research Scientist for Western Rock Lobster, Deep Sea Crabs and Southern Crustacean fisheries, with my primary duties being the stock assessment of these target species. I have also conducted a number of sub-contracting and consultancy jobs for companies including Woodside/SKM, Deep South, CSIRO and Razonatura. During this time I have worked directly on a range of marine biological projects with a number of commercial and recreational species including Blue Swimmer Crabs (Portunus pelagicus), Black Bream (Acanthropagus butcheri), Spiny Crabs (Hypothalassia armarta), Western Rock Lobsters (Panulirus cygnus), Caribbean spiny lobsters (Panulirus argus) and Barramundi (Lates calcarifer). I have also had extensive experience in marine ecology examining the biodiversity of a range of ecosystems in response to a number of anthropogenic impacts including dredging and marina development.

In 2010 I was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to undertake research at a number of overseas institutions with some of the world’s most highly regarded fisheries modelers, biologists and statisticians.

My main area of expertise is the stock assessment of commercially exploited fisheries. A key focus of the lobster research in the last six years has been on the effects of environmental conditions on the 7 recent years of low puerulus settlement and the climate change implications of this.


Kingsley Dixon


Professor Kingsley Dixon

Director of Science
Kings Park & Botanic Garden

Kingsley Dixon has over 20 years experience in researching the ecology and physiology of Australian native plants and ecosystems. As Director of Science at the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority (BGPA), he has developed a strong multi-disciplinary approach to conservation and restoration of native plant biodiversity and degraded landscapes. The research team of over 40 research staff and postgraduate students specialise in seed ecology and biology, propagation science, germplasm storage, conservation genetics and restoration ecology. This research group has contributed significantly to seed science in Australia, with major advances in understanding seed dormancy (pioneering work in smoke technology). His major contributions have been in the areas of horticultural development of Australian plants, conservation of rare species, minesite and urban bushland restoration and seed science.

Present distinguished positions include Board member, International Society for Ecological Restoration; Immediate-Past President, Australian Network for Plant Conservation; Member, International Panel of Experts for the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation; Consulting Editor, In Vitro Cell and Developmental Biology; National Judging Panel, Eureka Awards; National Grant Advisory Panel, Australian Flora Foundation; Chairman, Research Committee, Australian Orchid Foundation; Delegate of the Australian Network for Plant Conservation to the Council of Heads of Australian Botanic Gardens. Kingsley is also a Foundation member of Cambridge Coastcare and long-serving committee member.

Dr Judy Fisher


Dr Judy Fisher

Research Associate
Western Australia Museum

Dr Fisher is a multidisciplinary thinker utilising an holistic ecosystem approach in all projects she has been involved with over the past 25 years, from strategic global direction setting to local coastal projects with a particular interest in the inter face between the marine high water mark and coastal vegetation. She has also worked in temperate to tropical regions and established innovative projects in riverine, woodland, tropical monsoon coastal thickets and wetland ecosystems. She has developed innovative education and communication projects and has a particular interest in change management and communication methods to deliver positive innovative behavior change. Dr Fisher has extensive experience working with aboriginal communities in the areas of Traditional Ecological Knowledge and the effective interface with Western Science, in cultural awareness programmes and working with aboriginal people during ecological deliberations with mining companies.

She was recently nominated by the Australian Government to the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) as an expert in Traditional and Local knowledge Systems. Dr Fisher’s recent development of a new Thematic Group with the IUCN has resulted in large global support and a new ecosystem approach to the manner in which we manage coastal and other ecosystems incorporating legislation, policy, governance, management and restoration to enhance biodiversity, its services, human well-being, health, livelihoods and food security, incorporating indigenous and local communities. This global project has a key focus on water and coastal ecosystems, which are highly populated regions and most threatened by climatic and marine changes. The Membership of the Group comprises 28 countries with the Group’s 4 Year Action Plan being adopted as part of the Pacific Conservation Strategy (2014-2020), and a great deal of interest also now occurring across Europe, Asia, India and Cambodia to name a few.