Who is franc.sydney?

What is franc.Sydney?

Franc.sydney is about challenging the application of conventional urban storm water management practices to our modern cities and new developments.  It is building a community of individuals who are, connected to urban storm water and are passionate about changing the way it is managed. It seeks a future focused, resilient, adaptive and connected future.  In short, it is about being franc.

Conventional storm water management that focused purely on the rapid removal of storm water have served our cities well in the past. However, continued urban expansion has led to serious environmental, economic and social degradation such that the costs now outweigh the benefit.  The radical changes in catchment hydrology and the multiple and diverse pollution sources that conventional approaches introduce are aggressively degrading our freshwater and oceanic resources across Australia.

Fortunately, advances in urban storm water practices and technologies have been developed that  alleviate these costs and provide additional benefits to the flood, drought and thermal challenges brought on by climate change.  Further, by contributing to the ‘blue’ in blue-green infrastructure[AT1] , these new technologies and practices can help address some of the downsides apparent in modern urban development.  This includes making urban more humane,  improving our mental and physical health outcomes to such an extent that it is now recognised by health institutions as a means of reducing the burden on health systems, helping to prevent disease, and increase life expectancy and quality.

Despite demonstrable benefits, the adoption of Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) and Integrated Water Cycle Management (IWCM) has been poor.  Indeed, there are signs that the transition to improved practices is stalling, and is at risk of returning to conventional practices. 

The reasons for this are complex, including politics, ineffective policy, vested interest, market failure, professional bias and institutional inertia.  Given the consequences of continuing to use conventional practices, it is critical that society confronts these issues to build new developments that address the challenges introduced by climate change as demonstrated by the summer 2019/20  bushfires and the 2020/21 floods.

Stormwater NSW has been fiercely advocating for change but has found that its voice alone is not enough.  So, we have built franc to bring together parties from beyond the storm water profession to tackle this problem.  Together we can facilitate the change. The franc community currently includes professionals, academics, researchers and water quality advocates that recognised the need for change. But we need to grow this group.  So, please, reach out to us a Stormwater NSW admin@stormwaternsw.asn.au to become part of this movement, and join us at franc.sydney 2024 to share ideas and knowledge about how we make storm water truly blue green. 

What does franc.sydney stand for?

franc has four key values that represent what we stand for. We value a stormwater industry that is: 

Future-focused – It’s time for the world to step up and become more future-focused in their planning- how will today’s actions affect the world tomorrow? 

Resilient - We need to become more resilient as a society so that we can hope for the best but plan for the worst. 

Adaptive - We need to be adaptive to make sure our society is agile and can change when it needs to. 

Networked Communities - To achieve this, we need to be a networked community, where Communities of Practice work together to share knowledge and increase our influence on government and industry bodies.

Why be a part of franc.sydney?

When you join our community, you open the door to meet other like-minded professionals who are committed to creating a more sustainable world. You also make us stronger by adding your voice, helping us to push back against vested interest, bringing balance back to the policy discussion. 

By joining the franc network, and becoming one of our supporters you will have access to our events (seminars, workshops and conferences), hear from experts in their fields, have input into white papers, policy documents and position statements and have access to a wider network of individuals who are passionate about stormwater. 

We ask nothing of you, other than engaging with other professionals, participate in our events and join the conversation. 

As more likeminded individuals and organisations join franc, the more influence we will have over how urban stormwater and our waterways are managed, helping our society towards a better, more sustainable and, ultimately, more rational future.


Key Dates

Standard Registration Open
Thursday, 15 February 2024

Standard Registration Ends
Monday, 8 April 2024

Late Registration Open
Tuesday, 9 April 2024

Late Registration Ends
Wednesday, 17 April 2024 

Conference Opens
Wednesday, 17 April 2024

Conference Closes
Thursday, 18th April 2024

Conference Organiser

GEMS Event Management

PO Box 1221 Burwood NSW 1805

P: (02) 9744 5252