This section includes:
Formation of the Australasian Road Safety Conference and the Australasian College of Road Safety Awards
The inaugural 2015 Australasian Road Safety Conference, and the associated 2015 Australasian College of Road Safety Awards, were the result of a successful merger of Australasia’s 2 premier road safety conferences, the Australasian Road Safety Policing, Research and Education Conference and the Australasian College of Road Safety Conference.
“This inaugural conference will bring a point of new emphasis
– a progressive change to engage with a greater mix of stakeholders.”
The Australasian College of Road Safety, together with Austroads, recognised the crowded landscape of road safety conferences in Australasia as well as the limited opportunity to support attendance and participate in multiple events. While both conferences were high quality and provided a valuable contribution to building the knowledge of road safety practitioners, it was not sustainable to continue to have two separate conferences.
As an outcome of a multi-sectoral workshop in February 2014 in Melbourne, an In Principle agreement was reached by all parties in an effort to streamline the administrative and financial outlay required to support the two annual road safety conferences. The merger was also seen as a valuable opportunity to build on opportunities to support implementation of both the Australian National Road Safety Strategy 2011-2020 and the New Zealand Safer Journeys Strategy 2010-2020, as well as the overarching UN Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020.
Recognition of shared outcomes for both conferences were agreed:
- Supporting best outcomes for Australia’s National Road Safety Strategy 2011-2020, New Zealand’s Safer Journeys Strategy 2010-2020, the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020.
- A key method for transfer of knowledge across all sectors, upgrading skills and building road safety capacity.
- Transfer of knowledge across all sectors – research, road and transport authorities, insurance agencies, policing, education, health, medical, pre and post trauma care, consumer and user groups, related professional bodies, relevant industries and industry organisations as well as the media;
- Development of mechanisms for translating research into action;
- Providing opportunities for networking for administrators, researchers and practitioners within and across disciplines.
- Opportunities to give public recognition to authors and others for their achievements.
- An opportunity to ‘broaden the reach’ of road safety as a whole by encouraging the participation of political advocates, media, road authorities, researchers, insurers, manufacturers, health professionals, disability, public health and other sectors not immediately associated with the road safety community or road trauma outcomes.
- A prime opportunity to increase diversity and inclusion across all sectors and communities, thereby widening the reach of road trauma reduction strategies and promoting the development of new, innovative solutions to expedite road trauma reductions.
The College and its extensive membership, including federal and state jurisdictions across Australia and New Zealand, believed the ACRS and ARSRPE conferences should merge to form the Australasian Road Safety Conference. It was also recognised and unanimously agreed by all parties that the ACRS continues to be highly regarded and was therefore uniquely placed to take over custodianship of the conferences.
The formal agreement to form the Australsian Road Safety Conference and Australasian Road Safety Awards was reached by all parties in November 2014, with the ACRS appointed to manage the merger process and subsequent conferences.
The Australasian Road Safety Conference and Australasian College of Road Safety Awards aims to:
- Align with the national and international road safety efforts across Australia, New Zealand and globally, and assist in building road safety capacity across these regions.
- Provide a professional and rigorous environment to present current research and best practice in road safety, particularly in those areas identified as national road safety priorities. This will include directions and trends to expedite road trauma reductions, and will include, in particular, road safety research, policing and education and the many other sectors involved in developing road safety solutions.
- Provide a venue for discussion of advances in road safety research and practice including in education, communications, enforcement, engineering and the road environment.
- Showcase innovation, progress and new directions in road safety policy, planning, research, practice and evaluation.
- Promote increased diversity and inclusion around road trauma reduction debate and strategies, thereby promoting the development of new, innovative solutions.
- Reward exemplary projects and individuals for outstanding efforts to reduce road trauma.
- Bring together road safety stakeholders and decision-makers from Australasia and international jurisdictions to facilitate collaboration and information sharing.