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About the centre

Education and research partnerships for the betterment of society

We inspire and educate project leaders to deliver optimal value in their major projects – bringing benefits to all levels of society. We partner with government and industry, who benefit from our major project expertise.

Our story

The John Grill Centre for Project Leadership is based at the University of Sydney, benefitting from the University’s academic excellence and extensive network.

The centre was established in October 2012 with a landmark $20 million donation from University of Sydney alumnus John Grill AO, on his retirement as CEO of WorleyParsons.

John Grill is Chair of the centre, supported by the Management Committee and executive Advisory Board.

Our goals

The successful delivery of large projects relies on strong, strategic leadership, collaborative engagement, and knowing when to ask the right questions.

The John Grill Centre aims to enhance the value of large-scale projects in Australia and support social wellbeing and economic prosperity through executive education and partnerships. We offer education programs on the leadership and governance of major projects, and partner with industry and government sectors to provide expert and academic consultation, delivering strong project results through applied research.

Our collaboration

Ours is a collaborative model. We work actively with government and industry across a range of sectors including infrastructure, energy, aviation, mining, telecommunications, defence, technology, banking and finance to develop education programs and research initiatives which will deliver on the major challenges Australia will face in the future.

The centre combines the experience of industry experts and world-class academics, drawing on the multidisciplinary expertise of leading faculties across the University of Sydney.

Our governance structure

The centre consists of two boards:

The Advisory Board advises the centre on strategic issues and facilitates external engagement relating to the performance and sustainability of the centre. It performs this role by contributing to the strategic management of the centre and by drawing on members' experience in industry for the centre's benefit. The board will support and further the centre's mission, executive education and relevant linkages with industry and government.

The Management Committee has responsibility for oversight of centre activities and to approve its annual business plan (including budget, audit, and financial management and annual reporting); and to ensure compliance with University of Sydney regulations and policies. The Management Committee will also provide advice as needed on academic plan, business development, IT infrastructure, infrastructure management, operating resource allocation and sustainability. The Chair (Provost) of the Management Committee will approve the Annual Report of the John Grill Centre presented by the Executive Director, after which the Annual Report will be submitted to the University and the Serpentine Foundation.

My vision is to create a world-class centre which will attract senior executives across a broad range of industries who will gain the skills to effectively deliver large projects, bringing benefits to all levels of our society.
John Grill, Chair