Naval Shipbuilding Industry Reference Committee

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IRC membership details are updated each quarter.

On 20 September 2018, the Australian Industry and Skills Committee (AISC) endorsed the final membership and structure of the new Naval Shipbuilding Industry Reference Committee (IRC).  See the table below for the full list of members.

The Naval Shipbuilding IRC is responsible for:

  • ensuring that the skilling requirements for the naval shipbuilding and sustainment industries are reflected in relevant training packages
  • working with the Naval Shipbuilding College to understand workforce requirements for the naval shipbuilding and sustainment industries
  • examining relevant competencies, skillsets and national training package qualifications to address any gaps to support the specific needs of the naval shipbuilding and sustainment industries
  • examining new approaches to career structuring, progression and transition in the sector, and the education pathways needed to support these
  • scoping opportunities for collaboration across vocational education and training (VET), higher education and industry sectors to take advantage of opportunities presented by naval shipbuilding
  • working in partnership with relevant IRCs to lead industry’s response to the needs identified, ensuring that qualifications deliver the right skills, to the right standard, for this expanding high-skilled industry.

The IRC has been established to support the national implementation of the Naval Shipbuilding Plan (released 16 May 2017), which seeks to establish a sustainable, long-term naval shipbuilding industry in Australia through the design and construction of a number of modern naval vessels (including 12 regionally superior conventional submarines, nine future frigates and 12 offshore patrol vessels).

This requires a range of skills that cut across a number of industry sectors, including design (naval architecture), engineering, complex systems integration, and advanced manufacturing and outfitting techniques using highly specialised materials and composites. While many of these skills currently exist in shipbuilding or adjacent industries, the IRC will seek to ensure that all of the specialist skills required can be delivered through the national education and training system (across both VET and higher education).

The Naval Shipbuilding IRC is supported by PwC's Skills for Australia (a Skills Service Organisation). For more information about the IRC and how you can get involved please contact PwC.

Further information about the role of IRCs and how they will operate can be found in the IRC Operating Framework.

You are also welcome to submit any questions to the AISC Secretariat at

Naval Shipbuilding IRC – Structure and membership



Category Organisation Representative Member Type Jurisdiction
Employee Association Two union representatives, determined by the Australian Council of Trade Unions - Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union Ian Curry  Deputy Chair SA
Employee Association Two union representatives, determined by the Australian Council of Trade Unions - Electrical Trades Union Matt Murphy  Member NSW
Employer/Enterprise Austal TBA Member  
Employer/Enterprise Australian Submarine Corporation (ASC) Pty Ltd Christian Hamilton  Member SA
Employer/Enterprise Luerssen Australia Jennifer Bruce  Member WA
Employer/Enterprise Naval Group Mark Dowd  Member SA
Employer/Enterprise BAE Systems Australia Georgette Elston  Member SA
Employer/Enterprise Australian Industry Group Peter Canavan  Member VIC
Peak/Advisory/Assoc. Sustainment expertise­ - Teekay Shipping Peter Iuliano  Member NSW
Peak/Advisory/Assoc. Systems integration expertise - Lockheed Martin Australia Rob Milligan  Member ACT
Peak/Advisory/Assoc. Defence industries small to medium enterprise representative - Direct Edge Manufacturing Diane Edgerton Chair TAS
Government Department of Defence Patrick Fitzpatrick  Member ACT
Government Higher education sector with relevant specialisation and/or partnerships with the naval shipbuilding industry - University of Wollongong Stephen Van Duin  Member NSW
RTO TAFE SA Penny Johnston  Member SA
Other Naval Shipbuilding College Ian Irving  Member  
Other Engineers Australia Bernadette Foley  Member SA