Ian Cameron - People - Chemical and Process Engineering - University of Canterbury - New Zealand

Professor Ian Cameron

Queensland University, Australia

CAPE Prestige Seminar Series


"Form, Function and Failure: delivering performance in engineering and education systems"


Is there any fundamental link between engineered process systems and higher education curricula? This is a question I’d like to explore by considering the concepts of form and function.

Engineers are ultimately concerned about delivering function in the things they develop, be it a car, iPad, or dairy plant. On the flip side, how is failure to be understood and what is the complex interplay between the engineered artefact, operational procedures and people? How are these ideas applicable to designing and delivering higher education curricula?

In this presentation I’d like to investigate how function arises and how it is linked to the components of the system and their interconnections, emphasising the role of computer aided process engineering (CAPE) tools in helping to address some of these issues. Recent industrial case studies illustrate many of the new ideas around function, performance and resilience.

From this position, the challenge of design and operation of curricula using similar approaches to engineered systems can be investigated and illustrated.


Professor Ian Cameron, BE, MS, PhD, DIC, FTSE, FIChemE, CEng, RPEQ.

Professor in Chemical Engineering
School of Chemical Engineering,
The University of Queensland,
Brisbane, Australia 4072

Ian Cameron is the former head of the School of Chemical Engineering at The University of Queensland, an inaugural Senior Fellow of the Australian Learning and Teaching Council and ALTC Discipline Scholar in Engineering & ICT. He is currently Professor in Chemical Engineering at UQ and is also a director and principal consultant at Daesim Technologies, Brisbane, Australia.

He completed Chemical Engineering degrees at the University of NSW, with first class honours and a masters degree at the University of Washington, USA. He worked for 10 years for the CSR Group in diverse industry sectors such as sugar, building materials and industrial chemicals, having roles in process and control system design, plant commissioning, production management and environmental protection.

He obtained his PhD and DIC from Imperial College London in the area of Process Systems Engineering (PSE), and then worked full-time for 3 years as a United Nations (UNIDO) process engineering consultant in Argentina and a further 6 years in Turkey on a part-time basis. He has spent the last 25 years in research, consulting, teaching and learning innovation at The University of Queensland, having received numerous awards including the J.A. Brodie Medal of the Institution of Engineers Australia, the Australian Award for University Teaching in Physical Sciences 2003 and the Prime Minister’s Award for University Teacher of the Year. He was part of the team from UQ Chemical Engineering that won a prestigious, national AAUT institutional award in 2005 for educational enhancement via curriculum and course innovation.

He has published over 220 international journal and conference papers in areas of PSE, granulation, risk management, advanced control, intelligent systems and engineering education. He is the co-author of 4 books, including a process systems modelling book used in over 35 countries as well as a widely used book giving a comprehensive treatment of industrial process risk management based on almost 30 years of research and consultancy work.

He has held visiting appointments at Imperial College London, University College London, The Technical University of Denmark, the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and the University of Edinburgh.
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