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Uncovering a renewed Geological Survey of South Australia

A strategic restructure of the Geological Survey has resulted in creation of new teams and management, new staff positions and a net reduction in staff and function.

In February 2017 the Geological Survey of South Australia (GSSA) commenced operations as part of its new restructure, one of the most profound in its greater than 130 year history. This restructure recognises the increasing demands within government, such as for the delivery of geoscience initiatives (e.g. PACE Copper), new geoscience data and advice, and new facilities such as the South Australia Drill Core Reference Library at Tonsley. It also addresses a budget saving target of ~$500,000 through a reduction in full-time equivalent staff.

New teams and management

A fundamental feature of the new GSSA structure is the recognition of its overarching roles in both geoscience and in legislated activities around resource planning and regulation.

The geoscience focus of the new GSSA is under the leadership of Anthony Reid (Senior Principal Geoscientist) and built around four programs that closely align with the themes and philosophy of the national UNCOVER initiative including:

  • Characterising South Australia’s Cover (coordinator to be advised)
  • South Australia’s Lithospheric Architecture (coordinator Stephan Thiel)
  • South Australia’s 4D Geodynamic and Metallogenic Evolution (coordinator Rian Dutch)
  • South Australia’s Mineral System Footprints (coordinator John Keeling).

The legislated part of the new GSSA is built around the following four programs, the first two under the leadership of Gregory Jenkins (Senior Principal Geoscientist – Geoscientific Information Strategy):

  • Geoscience Information Management and Delivery (coordinator Peter Buxton)
  • 4D Geoscience Atlas of South Australia (coordinator Laz Katona)
  • Community Liaison and Logistics (coordinator Ian Hopton)
  • Core Library Operations (coordinator David Groom).

Spanning across both geoscience and legislated roles is the Resource Assessment and Advice program, led by Marc Twining.

The new structure also includes high-level management positions, such as a Deputy Director (Rohan Cobcroft), International Collaborations (Baohong Hou) and bringing into the GSSA the General Manager – Geoscience Initiatives (Chris Wilcox currently acting in this role).

New staff

We welcome new staff to the GSSA including:

  • Rohan Cobcroft (Deputy Director and Senior Principal Geoscientist – Discovery and Resource Strategy)
  • Marc Twining (Senior Principal Geoscientist – Resource Assessment and Advice)
  • Kate Robertson (Senior Geophysicist – South Australia’s Lithospheric Architecture).

GSSA organisation chart

GSSA organisation chart (management level).

Reductions in staff and functions

The GSSA will no longer continue with its seismic monitoring function, and instead that official role has now been transferred to Geoscience Australia in line with other Australian jurisdictions and includes the upgrading of several of the monitoring stations.

As a result of the restructure a number of staff retired or took voluntary separation packages. We would like to acknowledge the service and career contributions of Kevin Braithwaite (recently deceased), Mark Flintoft, David Love, Brian Morris, Wolfgang Preiss, Malcolm Sheard, Steve Sutton and Alison Wallace.

Future commitment and delivery

A major focus of the GSSA in the upcoming year is the final delivery of the PACE Copper program. More insight and information on the activities of the GSSA can be found on its website, as well as at the GSSA Discovery Day on 7 December 2017.

Steve Hill
Chief Government Geologist
Director, Geological Survey of South Australia

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