Grace Kennedy, systems engineer, has arrived at SMART to research Model Based Systems Engineering on Rail Infrastructure.

Working with Professor Peter Campbell, Ms Kennedy brings experience of working in the Systems Engineering Innovation Centre (SEIC) in the UK.

Her expertise is in the field of organisational systems engineering, and how the “soft” or human aspects of enterprises (such as roles, culture, competencies, decision-making and strategy) can be modelled and integrated into enterprise system model.

“People are huge assets for an organisation, they are not just automatons, a statistic of person-hours, or a box on an organisational chart,” she said.

“We create formal and informal networks of communication within organisations, we build up experience, skills and knowledge over time.

Ms Kennedy is interested in how organisations maintain this organisational knowledge when the population shifts – what happens when people leave or retire?

She said it was important to look at how agile organisations are to change, and how they will adapt to meet future challenges such as the introduction of new technologies or partnerships with other enterprises.

Ms Kennedy arrives at SMART with 10 years of systems engineering experience in academia and the Defence industry.

Her family moved to the Illawarra last year.

“I was drawn to SMART because of their work in systems engineering research,” she said.

“It is an exciting place for a keen mind, with a breadth and depth of interesting projects being undertaken.”