Convened by Bonnie Shaw, ‘AI: Place in Practice’ brings together panellists Thomas Chapman, Joshua Lye, Andrew Maher and Dr Bree Trevena, who will speculate on the advent of accessible AI and its place and impact on the built environment profession.
The panel aims to break down the barriers to evolving digital literacy in architecture. Expect a conversation traversing large language models, place-based decision making, DIY coding, entropy models, archives, workflows, creativity, studio applications and design thinking.
Doors will open at 6.30 pm to allow attendees to explore the Walsh Street house – the iconic modernist residence designed by Robin Boyd in 1957 – and enjoy refreshments in the courtyard.
Bonnie Shaw, Co-founder / Place Intelligence (Convenor)
Trained as a Landscape Architect and Urban Designer, Bonnie has spent more than half her career delivering impact through advanced technology projects with some of the worlds most respected research and innovation labs. She helped to establish and lead Australia’s first Smart City team at the City of Melbourne. Bonnie is also the Chief Strategy & Impact Officer at Place Intelligence, she champions a deep focus on evidence based design outcomes, ensuring that the work is consistently translating into real world impact. In 2019/20, she re-trained as a Human Potential Coach, to leverage the latest research in biohacking and behaviour change to enable better community health and resilience in times of increasing complexity, uncertainty and continuous change.
Bonnie is faculty at the Australian & New Zealand School of Government, and has held adjunct professor roles at Georgetown University and the Melbourne Business School. She was recognised as a finalist in the prestigious Australia & New Zealand Women in AI Awards in 2021 and was recognised as a global leader in AI in the Relativity Awards in 2023.
Thomas Chapman, Computational Design Lead / McGregor Coxall
Thomas’ work explores the cybernetic loop between human and machine. A self-taught programmer and registered Landscape Architect (BDes, MLA) with over a decade of professional practise. Thomas crafts digital solutions that empower designers through the prism of data accessibility, agency and fun.
Joshua Lye, Research Assistant / RMIT
Joshua is an architectural designer, researcher, and educator focusing on the convergence of architecture, technology, and design. He possesses expertise in computational design, machine learning, and data analytical design workflows. Joshua’s PhD research titled “High-Resolution Combinatorics of Space” explores design workflow that enables high-resolution spatial planning of towers through an increased resolution of design an information.
Andrew Maher, Group Managing Principal, Eminence, Digital & Innovation / Aurecon
As Group Managing Principal, Andrew is a member of Aurecon’s Group Executive responsible for the firm’s group-wide Eminence, Digital, Data & Innovation programs. Andrew leads a cross-organisational team focussed on serving the present needs of Aurecon’s clients across design, engineering and advisory of their assets as well as partnering with clients to prepare for their future needs.
Andrew manages Aurecon’s strategic partnering program and the new digital investments and acquisitions. In 2018 Aurecon acquired Studio Magnified to create a global visualisation and creative technology studio called Unsigned Studio. In 2019 Aurecon acquired a stake in ELARA, an artificial intelligence platform, on which Andrew maintains a director role. In 2020 Aurecon acquired Digital Node to broaden its digital advisory services. In 2023 Aurecon established a Generative AI group to take new solutions with these technologies to clients.
Andrew is fascinated by the changing nature of professional work and how it can help shape a better future society. He is enthusiastic about how technology is rapidly requiring people to bring more human skills to the world of work such as empathy, compassion and judgement. He sees the commercial bridge between art and science – between design and development – becoming ever stronger. It’s a bridge he’s more than happy to help build.
Dr Bree Trevena, Foresight Leader and Associate Principal / ARUP
Dr Bree Trevena is a passionate urban designer, dedicated social researcher and leader of Arup’s Australasia Foresight team. At Arup, Bree works with partners to explore and understand complex change to envision and realise alternative futures. Across a public and private sector career spanning policy development, strategic design, R&D and infrastructure delivery in Australia, Singapore and Aotearoa New Zealand, Bree’s connective thread has been unpacking the multi-faceted relationships between people, place, technology and nature in the built environment. She is a co-convener of the Data Informed Design (DiD) community of practice and holds a PhD from the University of Melbourne exploring complex adaptive systems in precinct governance and design.
Image: Ai Combinatoric Façade – Joshua Lye