Whole of Government Effective Consequence Management Program

National Security College | Professional course
Whole of Government Effective Consequence Management Program


When complex emergencies require a Commonwealth-led response, there is little room for error. Effective consequence management demands an effective network of officials, who are not only experts in their technical field, but who are also highly skilled in leading complex interactions across jurisdictions, borders and diverse stakeholder sets. The course will also run on 20-21 May and 9 - 10 October 2020.

National Security College, JG Crawford Building #132, Lennox Crossing, ANU

The fee for this program is $2,900 (GST ex).

Course overview

The program is designed to further develop and consolidate this cadre of crisis and consequence management professionals, as a strategic asset for Australia. The Australian Government Crisis Management Framework (AGCMF) outlines the arrangements for how the Commonwealth prepares for, responds to, and recovers from any crisis. The AGCMF sets out the roles and responsibilities of senior Commonwealth officials from across a range of portfolios; ranging from dedicated emergency management personnel to generalist government employees.

Scope and Content:

The program brings together officials from a range of agencies to build skilled personnel with an integrated approach to consequence management, a deeper understanding of emergency response mechanisms at both the state and federal levels, and a collaborative response culture.

The ECM is designed for those in leadership roles to:

  • Introduce and develop the construct of consequence management for policy development and crisis response at all levels within government

  • Create action plans, dialogue and debriefing mechanisms which embed consequence management in agency planning and thinking

  • Understand and utilise the broader contextual landscape within complex emergencies to include political, social, environment, diversity and economic factors

  • Identify the leadership skills required to effectively lead consequence management considerations

  • Experience first-hand from community members their reflections before, during and after complex emergencies.

Who should attend?

This course is designed for Commonwealth officials with crisis management responsibilities, based on the Australian Government Crisis Management Framework. Representatives from state and territory jurisdictions are invited to participate to provide input from a ‘first responder’ perspective.

Course details:

  • One and a half day non-residential, fully-catered program
  • Includes pre-dinner reception on Day One with a notable guest speaker
  • ANU parking permit supplied
  • Course timings 8.30am - 5:30pm (Day 1); 9.00am - 3.30pm (Day 2)

Course convenor

Jon Brewer

Jon Brewer is Director of Professional Studies at the National Security College, ANU. He is a seasoned national security professional with extensive experience within the national security community, including the Australian Defence Force.

Jon has led teams to contribute to operational and policy responses on a range of issues, including counter terrorism, foreign interference and cyber security. He has also been instrumental in building multi-agency capability in the pursuit of national security goals. He has considerable experience in facilitating an environment that promotes the sharing and use of expertise within national security contexts, and has done so with Australian and international partners.

Jon holds an Executive Master of Public Administration (ANU) and a Bachelor of Science (UNSW). Jon is a Graduate member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and has experience as a non-executive Director within the not-for-profit sector.

Course presenter(s)

Rob Cameron, Director General, Emergency Management Australia

Rob was appointed Director General Emergency Management Australia (EMA) in the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs, on 4 September 2018. In this role, Rob is the senior advisor to government on matters relating to the coordination of Australia’s response to crises, including natural disasters, and the consequences of terrorist or security-related incidents.

As Director General, Rob oversees the development of national emergency management capability, supports national emergency management governance arrangements, and administers the Australian Government’s disaster recovery programs. Rob also oversees the Australian Government Crisis Coordination Centre; a 24/7, all-hazards situational awareness and disaster coordination facility,which also houses the National Security Hotline.

Prior to his appointment as Director General, Rob was Assistant Secretary, Crisis Management Branch, EMA, and before that, led the Health Emergenc y Management Branch in the Australian Government Department of Health’s Office of Health Protection.

Rob has a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the Australian National University, a Graduate Certificate in Public Sector Management from Flinders University,and is an alumnus of the National Security College Senior Executive Service program.

Mark Duckworth, Executive Director Emergency Management, Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions

Mark is the Executive Director of the Emergency Management in the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions (DJPR).

Mark was previously Victoria’s first Chief Resilience Officer in the Department of Premier and Cabinet (DPC), where his work focused on community, resilience and on preventing violent extremism.

Mark has played a leading role nationally in creating policy to develop community resilience and to counter violent extremism. While in DPC he held several senior executive roles developing public policy including public sector governance, security, emergency management, community engagement, Veterans’ Affairs, multicultural policy and public administration.

Mark was a member of the Australia New Zealand Counter-Terrorism Committee (ANZCTC) from its foundation in 2002 until 2015. From 2008 to 2015 he was the inaugural chair of the ANZCTC Countering Violent Extremism sub-committee. In 2007 he was awarded the Public Service Medal for his work in establishing the National Counter¬ Terrorism arrangements.

For many years he served on the Australia New Zealand Emergency Management Committee. He led the group that drafted the National Strategy for Disaster Resilience. This Strategy was endorsed by the Council of Australian Governments in February 2011.

He chairs the State Crisis and Resilience Council Risk and Resilience Sub-Committee.

He had a key role in establishing the Global Terrorism Research Centre at Monash University. Before joining DPC, Mark worked at the NSW Cabinet Office, the University of Sydney Law School and the Law Reform Commission of Victoria. He has an MA in history and an LLB from the University of Melbourne and is admitted as a solicitor in Australia and England. He has written a number of articles on security policy, disaster resilience, plain legal language and 18th Century history.

Georgeina Whelan, Commissioner, ACT Emergency Services Agency

Georgeina Whelan graduated from Officer Training into the Australian Army in June 1988. She has extensive experience in the command and management of Defence health systems and military disaster response. As an Army Officer Brigadier Whelan deployed to East Timor in 1999 as the Operations Officer of the 1st Health Support Battalion and to Banda Aceh, Indonesia on Operation Sumatra Assist in command of the ANZAC Field Hospital in 2005. Georgeina completed the Defence Command and Staff Course in 2000, the US Army Military Medical Strategic Leadership Program in 2008, Higher Defence College in 2012 and the Senior Executive Leadership Program at the National Security College, Australian National University in 2016. She recently qualified as an All Hazards - Level Three Incident Controller. Georgeina joined the Emergency Services Agency as the Chief Officer of the State Emergency Service in late October 2017 having completed 32 years of military service, most recently as the Director General, Select Strategic Issues Management in the Office of the Chief of the Defence Force and Chief of Staff, Australian Defence Force Headquarters. In August 2019, Georgeina was appointed as the first female Commissioner of the ACT Emergency Services Agency. Georgeina was awarded a Conspicuous Service Cross (CSC) in 2004 and was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 2006. More recently she was awarded a Bar to her Conspicuous Service Cross in the 2016 Queens Birthday Honours List. She was named ACT Telstra Business Woman of the year in 2015. She holds post graduate qualifications in Business Management, and Defence and Strategic Studies. She is currently studying for a Masters in Leadership focusing her major project on Inclusion and Operational Capability. Georgeina is married and has four children. She remains active in the Army Reserve and in her spare time she masquerades as a DYI home renovator, umpiring netball, reading and entertaining.

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