Welcome to Season 5 Episode 11
Human Systems with Grace Kennedy
Grace Kennedy is a Systems Engineer. She specialises in understanding, modelling and communicating the interaction of humans and technical systems.
She spoke to Mel & Dom about her thoughts and experience on Human Systems Integration and expresses her concern with engineers ensuring they keep the human interaction at the forefront of their mind as they are creating new systems.
You need to be able to plan and design your systems such that you’re going to reduce the risk of human error.
Grace’s family are all in medicine. She jokes that extended family gatherings are like a retired dentist convention!
Grace is the youngest of four siblings and while they all went down the family trade of doctors or dentists, Grace knew this wasn’t for her. She is much too squeamish for medicine.
Growing up she was always fascinated by how things worked. She would pull things apart and mostly be able to get them back together again. There might be a toaster or 2 left at her folks place that doesn’t exactly work like it used to :)
But it wasn’t until she was about 14 or 15 that she went on a school excusion to the British Aerospace, what is now BA Systems, that a future started to become clearer for Grace. This field trip really got her mind whirlling...
I kind of blundered into it, but it worked out being ideal for me
Extra discussions during the episode
Future: It’s key that engineers pass on their knowledge
It would be remiss of me not to say that the future of engineering is our workforce.
Advice: Keep your mind open to all the possibilities, and remain a critical thinker
Keep your options open
Particularly from the human systems point of view, because you really need to consider the whole sustainment of life in space.
With his inter-disciplinary knowledge that he was one of the first systems engineers, maybe!
About Grace Kennedy
Grace Kennedy is an Associate Research Fellow in the SMART Infrastructure Facility at the University of Wollongong researching applications of MBSE for the Australasian rail industry.
Grace holds a Masters in Systems Engineering (with Diploma in Industrial Studies) from Loughborough University, UK.
She has expertise in Organisational Systems Engineering (modelling enterprises as systems, in particular the integration of ”soft”/human aspects of organisations into these models). She started her career working in Air Systems at BAE Systems, UK.
Prior to immigrating to Australia, Grace was a researcher at the Systems Engineering Innovation Centre at Loughborough University.
Grace is a CPEng (Systems Engineering) through Engineers Australia and has attained CSEP status with INCOSE. She is the co-chair of the INCOSE Human Systems Integration Working Group. Grace is a member of EA, INCOSE, IEEE and the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society of Australia (HFESA).
She is currently undertaking a part-time PhD investigating the application of MBSE and Digital Engineering for organisational change through the lens of organisations as systems.
More details at https://scholars.uow.edu.au/display/grace_kennedy
Dominic De Gioia is the Director of a multi-discipline engineering firm, Epicentre Consulting Engineers. He is a mechanical engineer with specialist experience in hydraulic engineering.
Melanie De Gioia is the Podcast Producer for Engineers Australia and the Director of Ramaley Media.
Together, Mel & Dom launched Engineering Heroes on 20 June 2018
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About Engineering Heroes
We interview engineers as they discuss their life and the issues they are dealing with.