Conference Co-Chairs

Professor Andy Fourie
Professor of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering, The University of Western Australia

Andy is a Professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering at The University of Western Australia in Perth. He has a Bachelor and Master degree from the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa, and a PhD from the Imperial College, University of London. He has worked at the University of Queensland, the University of the Witwatersrand and has been a visiting professor at the University of Alberta, the Catholic University of Valparaiso in Chile and the University of Colorado in Boulder. His research is in the field of mitigating the impact of mining and municipal solid waste disposal. Outcomes from his research have been incorporated in changes to environmental legislation in South Africa. He contributed to a series of guidelines for managing mine tailings in Australia, as well as developing a document for the International Atomic Energy Association on barrier systems for retaining uranium mining waste. Andy has been involved in many industry-focussed projects with current projects including an evaluation of tailings storage facilities monitoring technologies managed by AMIRA and funded by eight mining companies, Future Tails aimed at training, research and education to improve tailings management funded by BHP and Rio Tinto and evaluating potential static liquefaction of tailings to prevent failures, funded by six mining companies as well as the Australian Research Council. Andy is also currently a member of five international tailings review boards.


Dr David Reid
Research Fellow, The University of Western Australia

David is a tailings engineer with 14 years’ experience in the design, laboratory testing, investigation, and analysis of tailings and tailings storage facilities. He is primarily involved in laboratory and in situ characterisation of tailings with respect to strength, consolidation, and liquefaction. David completed a PhD from The University of Western Australia, which involved studying the properties of polymer-treated tailings and the use of centrifuges to perform consolidation testing. In November 2017, David joined UWA’s School of Civil, Environmental, and Mining Engineering for an ARC Linkage project focussed on static liquefaction of tailings.


Keynote Speaker

Dr Ryan Veenstra
Global Backfill Specialist, Newmont Australia

Ryan is Newmont’s global backfill specialist, providing technical and operational expertise and leadership for Newmont’s underground mines. Over the last 15 years, he has been involved in backfill as an academic, consultant, and on-site engineer and presently coaches and mentors Newmont’s backfill engineers in Australia and the Americas. His expertise and experience cover the entire backfill system with a particular speciality in backfill geomechanics. He has a geological engineering degree from the University of Waterloo and holds a PhD in civil engineering from the University of Toronto.


Event Contacts

Josephine Ruddle
Event Manager, Australian Centre for Geomechanics




Candice McLennan
Event Coordinator, Australian Centre for Geomechanics