ICAF 2019: Plantema Lecture and Medal

On 5 June 2019, in Kraków, Poland, I was honoured to present the Plantema Memorial Lecture (the keynote address) and receive the Plantema Medal at the 30th Symposium of the International Committee on Aeronautical Fatigue and Structural Integrity (ICAF).

The Plantema Medal has been established by ICAF in 1967. It is a career award that is presented to a selected leading member of the structural integrity community. The award recipient is invited to deliver a keynote lecture at the start of the biennial symposium. The Plantema Memorial Lecture is named after the late Dr. Ir. Frederik Johan Plantema, co-founder and first General Secretary of ICAF, who passed away in November 1966.

I note two things from the list of 26 Plantema Medal recipients:

  • I am the second ‘Swift’, the other being Tom Swift (1987); and
  • I am the third Australian, the others being John Mann (1983) and Graham Clark (2011).

My title was: ‘Last Diamond, An Appeal for Holistic Regulatory Leadership’. It was timely after the grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX. I drew on my diverse regulatory experience, civil and military, to give an insight into the qualities of good regulatory ‘craftsmanship’, and why this ‘craft’ is not only as important to structural integrity as good engineering, it is also every bit as interesting, challenging and satisfying. I spoke about the need for regulators to be holistic, to have good standards, and to be of good character.

My presentation is available on my ‘Tech’ page.