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Industry and community projects

3000 level - projects and partners

COVID-19 update: 2021 projects will be delivered online

Student safety is our priority and due to the impacts of COVID-19, our intensives and semester-long ICPUs will be delivered in an online format, primarily through Zoom video conferencing.

As with face-to-face, you will still work collaboratively in interdisciplinary groups to solve a complex problem set by an industry partner. The partner will virtually engage and provide guidance throughout the project.

For Semester 1 and 2, some optional face-to-face learning options will be available. For students unable to attend face-to-face sessions, remote learning options will be provided as an alternative.

The following projects are 3000 level units. If you’re studying in a Bachelor of Advanced Studies, see information on our 4000 level projects

Because industry and community projects are run in collaboration with partners outside of the University, project partners and topics are subject to change prior to the start of teaching.

If you have any questions about the projects, you can email pvceducation.enquiries@sydney.edu.au

Availability of projects

Places in each project are limited so we encourage you to register early to avoid missing out. 

You will only see projects that are available for your enrolled shell unit and still have places available. If you can’t see a project when you register, you will need to select a different project. Project availability is subject to change.

Intensives

February intensives take place over 4 weeks from the 25 January to the 19 February 2021.

For intensive projects, students are expected to attend class Monday to Friday for the full day (exact timing to be determined by your project supervisor).

Find out how to enrol in an ICPU.

Coles Supermarkets - Promotion of Australian fresh produce in South East Asia

The demand for high quality fresh produce in Southeast Asia is increasing significantly. In light of the heightened focus on health and the growing upper-middle class segments that tend to purchase healthier, premium products. Coles is looking to scale its fresh produce sales into Southeast Asia to complement its sizeable meat portfolio. Students will research and provide recommendations on how Coles can scale its fresh produce sales into Southeast Asia, by exploring strategic initiatives, such as which stock keeping units or channels Coles should prioritise, what marketing activations Coles should undertake, how can Coles mitigate risk and strengthen brand confidence for its exported products and any technology investment that is appropriate.

KPMG - The impact of deglobalisation across australia

Humans have never been more connected: to each other, to our technology and to our beliefs and passions. We can feel as close with someone on the other side of the world, as someone on the other side of town. At the same time, the current pandemic has fractured our global world system, as we knew it and created a stronger focus on local and domestic needs. As we now shift away from recovery efforts to focus on renewal, it is time to consider what the pandemic has taught us. What are the impacts of de-globalisation? Where do we expect to see increasing localisation in Australia? What technology opportunities and changes in human behaviour can be harnessed to thrive in a new localised world? What do we need to be doing locally, to reconnect globally?  In this project, students will identify the considerations that governments, industries and businesses will need to navigate in line with emerging needs and demands over the next few years to succeed in a de-globalised world.

TAD– Using assistive technology to change lives

You are young, fit and in the prime of your life. One day at sports practice, you are doing a drill you have done a thousand times before. This time though, you slip and fall. This is what happened to Mark, a rugby league player seven years ago. In an instant, Mark’s life was changed forever; he was paralysed from the neck down. TAD changes the lives of people just like Mark living with a disability by providing personalised technology, equipment and services. TAD has over 100 volunteers who dedicate their time, skills and energy to produce life-changing solutions. New technologies such as microcontrollers, 3D printing and the internet are rapidly transforming solutions for people living with disabilities. TAD is working towards being a provider of innovative technology-based solutions; however, the majority of their volunteer workforce are inexperienced in this area. In this project, you will explore what new and emerging technologies will have the greatest impact on people living with a disability and explore how the changing nature of the volunteering industry can help to produce these solutions with a focus on regional NSW and VIC.

Information on July intensives will be made available in April 2021.

July intensives take place over 4 weeks from the 28 June to 23 July 2021.

Semester-long projects

Semester 1 projects will be delivered online and will take place over the course of the semester, commencing 1 March 2021. Students are expected to attend scheduled class times for 3 hours per week. For students in Sydney, some face-to-face learning options will be available.

Find out how to enrol in an ICPU.

Adobe – Closing the digital skills gap

Technology is rapidly growing and transforming on a daily basis and organisations have been forced to be more dynamic, agile, and adaptable to survive in this changing environment. Much of this survival is hinged upon employing a versatile workforce with the necessary skills and experience required to address this technological revolution. However, industry is struggling to find talent with these required digital skills. How might this skills shortage be addressed and who is responsible for closing the digital skills gap? In this project, you will investigate the future of education and look to formulate creative and innovative ways that businesses, schools, universities, and governments can tackle industry skills shortages. You are encouraged to find tangible solutions that address the future of education so that human talent aligns with technological advancement.

Allianz – Mental health and well-being at work

Employee mental health and well-being is imperative for Allianz. As the next generation enters the workforce, a key enterprise-wide focus is on the various factors that affect employee mental health and their well-being at work. Traditionally, mental health focused on individuals and their immediate social, family and environmental sphere of influence. However, the ways in which young people connect, communicate and engage with the world around them has undergone rapid change. Furthermore, current and future generations of young people face increasing socio‐economic, political and environmental uncertainty on a global level. Students in this project will work in interdisciplinary teams to explore a wide range of influences on the next generation’s mental health at work and work to develop a future enterprise-wide strategy for Allianz that will administer a positive impact on the mental health and well-being of the next generation entering the workplace.

ANZ Bank – Data privacy and ethical design

The COVIDSafe app is a watershed moment in the widespread adoption of digital technologies by the Australian public. Millions of users downloaded the app in the weeks following its release. Yet experts were quick to examine the privacy and security risks associated with the app. Despite being designed with “Privacy By Design” principles and in compliance with the Privacy Act (1988), the app nevertheless asks us to reflect on data privacy. Long after Forbes declared that privacy was “completely and utterly dead”, citizens, including corporate citizens like ANZ, have privacy and the ethical use of data front of mind. In this project, your group will examine the corporate governance requirements of ANZ and propose principles for data ethics, as well as supporting processes and artefacts to create a Data Ethics framework that has the potential to do good. This would need to fit into an overarching enterprise data governance framework. As part of developing a data ethics framework, interdisciplinary teams can examine how ANZ can implement a data strategy that will avoid causing harm, increase freedom and equality, preserve individual rights and participate meaningfully in the democratic process.

Cochlear Australia - Improving access to healthcare using digital technologies

As the market leader in implantable hearing solutions, Cochlear is constantly looking for new ways to evolve the hearing care delivery model and make it easier for people with hearing loss to access our technology and get the best possible outcome once they receive an implantable hearing solution. Connected Care is a long-term initiative at Cochlear that aims to use software, mobile apps and other digital health tools to transform the care delivery model for cochlear implants and bone anchored hearing aids. In this project, students will explore the likely future trends of telemedicine and the impact of digital technology on the future access and delivery of healthcare. Cochlear is interested in working with groups of interdisciplinary student groups to explore the future of Connected Care and the potential implications for the Cochlear product and services pipeline.

Elizabeth Broderick and Co - The role of men in the gender equality movement

The movement for gender equality has historically been “a struggle for women by women.” The efforts of women’s rights organisations have been and continue to be largely responsible for progress. However, gender inequality is an issue that affects all people – socially, economically and politically. Further, men, whether in the family, community or in organisations hold significantly greater power and influence. Achieving gender equality requires men to use their power and influence to drive change, as well as the redistribution of power between women and men. Yet, men and boys largely remain missing in efforts to achieve gender equality. How can we better engage and build men’s accountability for driving change? The United Nations Working Group on Discrimination Against Women will be examining effective strategies to strengthen the role and accountability of men in driving change to achieve gender equality. Against this background, this project will involve exploring the key elements required for men to effectively support gender equality efforts, drawing insights from research and case studies of promising practices from the across the globe. Projects will make recommendations on actions to build men’s accountability for gender equality.

Ernst & Young – Resurgance after a global pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has had immediate impact on pretty much every aspect of our lives. We have seen entire cities in lockdown, industries come to a halt and significant changes to the way we live our lives. This unforeseen event has forced governments, businesses and individuals to rethink how we operate. As we shift away from recovery efforts to a focus on resurgence; assessing and adapting for the long term in the ‘New Normal’ will be key to success. In this project, students will identify the considerations that governments, industries and businesses will need to navigate in line with emerging needs and demands over the next few years. You can explore many industries such as Transport, Airlines, Health, Education – you can decide how the workforce you will be entering can be shaped or how changing customer needs will be fulfilled.

IBM Australia - Balancing AI decision-making and privacy in healthcare

As populations age, taxation income declines, and medical services costs increase, governments and health care providers are faced with the complex combination of increasing operating expenses against long term forecasts of reduced income. Governments and health care providers are turning to exponential technologies, such as artificial intelligence and robotics, to improve the productivity of health service provision. This includes over-servicing, improving the supply chain, and improving diagnosis and treatment capabilities. However, as policymakers and organisations start leveraging these insights for diagnosis, decisions, and treatment technologies, new challenges emerge as humans and technology collaborate both at the individual and community levels. New government policies and laws are needed to balance community health with cost reductions to accommodate the blended human and technology operating model. In this project, students will consider whether we, as a community, can or should rely on artificial intelligence to make decisions about our health. When ethics/values clash with cost-effectiveness, what are the primary principles the community can rely on? In addition, should an individual’s data be key to this new world? What is the balance between individual privacy and the need to share data to improve prevention and community outcomes?

Jacobs Engineering Group - Creating a smart systems approach for future cities

The ways that our cities will connect and operate in the future is unpredictable and complex. Cities such as Greater Sydney are growing at a rapid pace and many regions across NSW are trying to plan for this growth by thinking about how new communities in the future can connect and fit together to improve liveability. A smart systems approach applied to an entire city aerotropolis means technologies such as Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) need to be well integrated with built transport infrastructure, key investment strategies, planning policy and legislation, among many other aspects. Jacobs is creating and shaping cities of the future through engineering technology. In this project, you will investigate how a smart systems approach can be used on a city-wide scale to improve the way we live now and many years into the future. You may choose to examine aspects such as how infrastructure in the future will be built to connect people and places, the economic and legislative policy implications of a smart precinct, the environmental and ecological impacts of city-building on greenfield land, or the ways that communities of the future can form new identities within a transformed space.

NSW Treasury Corporation - Climate resilience for NSW

In 2016, the NSW Government set out its intentions on climate change in the NSW Climate Change Policy Framework. The framework outlines long-term objectives to maximise the economic, social, and environmental wellbeing of the state in the context of a changing climate. NSW is making progress toward the 2050 target (the latest Australian greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory data shows 2017 GHG emissions in NSW were 18.2 per cent lower than 2005 levels). With GHG emissions in 2017 at 131.5 million tCO2-e, there needs to be committed action to achieve the 2050 target. Both private and public capital will need to be put to work to transform NSW into a net-zero emissions economy. Students will explore questions such as why is achieving net zero emissions important for NSW?  How do you attract private funding and investment into sustainable initiatives? What are the impediments to achieving the 2050 target? How do governments transition out of fossil fuels to renewables?  What are the key factors that contribute to resilience in the face of climate change? And how can the state derive maximum impact from the money invested through the NSW Climate Change Fund.

PTW Architects - Climate change and the cities of the future

Inaction on climate change poses significant threats to how we live. It is responsible for the increasing frequency and intensity of natural disasters and is expected to cause unprecedented poverty, famine and mass migration. Our built environment - our homes, our schools, our places of work - and the villages, towns and cities of which they are a part of are contributing to this climate crisis. PTW Architects have joined a worldwide effort to mitigate climate change through sustainable design. In this project, you will examine the role of architecture in developing the cities of the future. You may choose to identify local, regional or global environmental challenges and their impact on European and Asian cities, examine trends in sustainable design, propose a just transition plan, examine the technological advancements that will bring us closer to harmonious solutions or consider the legal and regulatory barriers that prevent more radical change to our built environments.

Tata Power India - Powering the next generation of energy across india

Tata Power is the largest power generation company in India, the second largest country in the world, where a quickly developing population of 1.4 billion people is demanding more and more energy. The Indian energy sector is in a rapid transition. 65 percent of the country’s electrical power is currently generated from coal. The Indian government has pledged to increase the share of power-generation capacity that does not use fossil fuels to 40 percent by 2030 and to reduce carbon emissions by 33 to 35 percent by 2030. At the same time, renewable energy technologies are reaching a maturation stage where India is well placed to expand its energy production sustainably. With India’s costs among the lowest in the world, it is at the cusp of an age of truly competitive, unsubsidised clean energy. In this project with Tata Power students will explore opportunities for accelerating the growth in India’s renewable energy market. Research topics could include innovative energy services or products, international trends and developments, deeper insights into the changing demands across the Indian population and solutions on how to provide renewable energy reliably to millions of rural homes.

The Matilda Centre - Mental health in the digital world

The rise of the ‘tech age’, has significantly transformed how people develop and relate to each other globally. During the global COVID-19 pandemic, restrictions on mobility in the physical world have only fuelled the growth of an increasingly digital world. Digital technology now pervades our lives from a young age; from the phenomenon of the ‘screen babysitter’ and the world of online ‘play’, to adolescents who grow up seeing their world, both public and private, through the digital eyes of their peers. While the digital medium provides an opportunity for young people in particular to stay socially connected, we have also witnessed the growth of online education and work, and increasing integration across the built and digital environment. However, in what ways is technology influencing young people’s mental wellbeing across arenas like home, education, work and community the decisions they make around socialisation and how they connect with each other and the world around them? As more of our lives are lived digitally, interdisciplinary teams spanning specialities as diverse as education, music, architecture, business, engineering, health, and psychology, are asked to develop insights or solutions as to how digital technologies can be leveraged for good.

Universities Admission Centre - Reimagining university admissions for wider access to higher education

Currently university admission is predominantly a numbers game and the personal attributes of an applicant – critical thinking, digital literacy, problem solving etc. are generally inferred from academic qualifications rather than specifically assessed as part of admissions. However, there is now a strong push for universities to admit students on broader criteria, while still ensuring that students are well prepared academically for university study. In this project, students may wish to consider how the current ATAR-based admission system works and how the key characteristics and attributes can be improved. Exploration of alternative models and frameworks used in other countries may be useful in determining the aspects of the current system that are worth retaining. Students are encouraged to propose new models including whether any new technologies can be leveraged to improve outcomes. Students must consider the implications of any recommended changes to the equitable allocation of university places, ensuring no group is significantly advantaged or disadvantaged.

Wandiyali Environa Wildlife Sanctuary - Building a collaborative conservation and restoration future

Across Australia, 95% of Box Gum Grassy Woodlands have been cleared for agriculture and development. This Australian ecological community of 400+ species is now critically endangered and at risk of becoming extinct. Wandiyali-Environa Wildlife Sanctuary, located in southern NSW at the intersection of Ngambri, Ngarigo, Ngunnawal and Ngunawal country, has been established to restore and conserve four hundred hectares of Woodlands. However, the sanctuary is only as strong as the community engagement and support it receives. How can the sanctuary build its connection with local residents, the regional council, local schools and tertiary education providers, traditional land custodians, local businesses, and the new Poplars innovation and technology precinct developers? What facilities, programs and services should be developed to foster engagement? How can we increase funding support for the sanctuary’s mission? Essentially, how might we continue to reimagine our local built and natural environment to develop and achieve shared sustainable conservation goals across a diversity of stakeholders? This project provides students from disciplines such as architecture, education, engineering, sociology, marketing and beyond with the opportunity to develop insights or innovative approaches to strengthen the future of this local ecological community.

Westmead Health Precinct - Using innovative technologies to improve clinical education

Health professionals working in busy clinical areas want their education and training to be accessible, relevant and engaging. Traditional clinical education tends to be didactic in-service sessions, bedside teaching, pre-reading and handouts. Whilst in some contexts this is appropriate and effective, the rapid acceleration and development of innovative technologies has created the possibility to expand traditional methods of clinical education. To expand the educational capacity, clinical educators must be equipped with the best possible tools to address identified educational deficits. These could include but are not limited to Gamification, Virtual/Augmented Reality and E-Learning. However, the number of available technologies, limited clinical time for development and limited funding availability can create a barrier to the effective implementation of potential solutions. Students in this project will explore innovative educational technologies, with consideration made to cost-effectiveness, usability and implementation in the context of clinical education.

Westpac Banking Corporation - Using digital technologies to improve user experience 

Westpac is Australia’s oldest bank and company, they provide a broad range of banking and financial services. Westpac is focused on helping Australians succeed, ensuring customers can save and invest with confidence, to helping with the financial needs of small businesses, multi-national corporates, institutional and government clients, Westpac put customers at the centre of everything they do. Westpac want to ensure the experiences for their customers and staff are quick and effortless, using technology to improve productivity, whilst focussing on user experience. In this project you will work in mixed disciplinary groups to explore solutions that take advantage of ways in which digital technologies can be used to deliver superior personalised service for customers or staff, to help put customers in control of their finances and to better understand and anticipate customer or staff needs. At the end of the project, you will pitch an innovative idea to help Westpac improve productivity or the experience of customers or staff in their branches, contact centres, corporate offices or in digital channels.

Information on Semester 2 projects will be made available in May 2021.

Semester 1, 2021 3000 level project timetable

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Intensive project sample timetable

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