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ASEC 2023 is over – where to from here?

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Project Performance International (PPI) was proud to sponsor and exhibit at the Annual Systems Engineering Conference (ASEC) this year! PPI was represented by Business Development Manager and Senior Engineer, René King, as well as Principal Consultant and Course Presenter, Paul Davies. René and Paul share below their highlights and reflections on the event.

René King: “The INCOSE ASEC 2023 conference, characterized by being vibrant, forward-thinking, and flawlessly executed, was a true embodiment of its theme “Embracing New Opportunities.” The event integrated this motif across various elements, from the innovative Spaces at Spline venue in Liverpool, UK, to the captivating keynote presentations, and even in addressing challenging topics of the zeitgeist, a hallmark of INCOSE UK’s bold approach. This combination consistently makes INCOSE ASEC a highlight of my year, leaving me with enriched insights and a refreshed perspective on systems engineering.
 
Dot-The-Eye’s exceptional management of the event stood out (as usual), showcasing their professionalism and integral role in the overall impact of INCOSE ASEC. In addition, this year’s conference saw unprecedented attendance and exhibitor participation, with 40% of the event participants being first-time attendees.
 
INCOSE UK’s Technical Director, Jon Holt gave tribute to some hot-off-the-press INCOSE UK publications, including “Don’t Panic! The Absolute Beginner’s Guide to System Integration and Test” by PPI’s Paul Davies, as well as other exceptional publications such as Tim Weilkiens and Chistian Muggeos book on SysML v2 as part of the same series. During the opening session, INCOSE Executive Director Steve Records eloquently presented the International organization’s vision to evolve from an author to an authoritative body, emphasizing operational excellence and professional development along this journey. His remark, “everyone likes progress but nobody likes change” resonated throughout the conference during hallway discussions and workshop interactions. Steve highlighted INCOSE’s commitment to gradual, evolutionary change.
 
The formation of an INCOSE chapter in Latin America (INCOSE Latam) highlighted the organization’s dedication to cultural integration and global outreach. Records shared his ambition to establish a strong and unified “One INCOSE” that allows for innovation and transformation of regional and national Chapters but also maintains the shared vision and ethos across all INCOSE chapters as new INCOSE groups burgeon around the world.
 
Dr. Nike Foyalan keynote was a high point, delving into the integration of diversity in organizational structures, stating that embracing SE often means welcoming a paradigm shift that supports Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). Her insights on transforming engineering education and the workforce were profound, raising critical questions about retention and representation of black and ethnic minority within the engineering industry.
 
Dr. Eluned Lewis’s after-dinner speech was particularly memorable, combining humor, engineering excellency and personal anecdotes from her distinguished career in personal protection and armor testing. 
 
Jessica Korzeniowska’s tutorial titled, “Sharing the Magic of Systems Engineering,” was a celebration of creativity and innovation in teaching SE, blending elements of fantasy and practicality in an engaging and informative manner. 
 
A highlight of the event – the afternoon panel session, led once again by the enigmatic Jon Holt, provided unscripted, authentic insights into INCOSE UK’s future direction, including the pending transformation of INCOSE into the Institute for Systems Engineering (IfSE) and its implications for the organization’s identity and coherence.
 
The conference also sone light on SEP certification and Professional Registration, with a significant increase in these professional development activities within INCOSE UK, underscoring their value to members.
 
In conclusion, the INCOSE ASEC 2023 conference was a remarkable convergence of thought leadership, innovation, and professional development, leaving attendees feeling inspired and excited to navigate the evolving landscape of systems engineering.”
 
 

René King
BSc (Engineering), MScEng
Business Development Manager & Senior Engineer

Paul Davies: “Professor Michael Jackson’s keynote addressed the promotion of Systems Thinking into strategic decision-taking and especially into government procurement. Having been a student of Peter Checkland many decades ago, and carried forward the soft systems analysis ideas throughout his career, he painted a picture of a modern landscape where some advances in thinking are evident, but not nearly enough. He did enthuse the audience into doing their (our?) bit to help make a difference.

 
The most mind-blowing presentation of the ASEC was a lecture from a Loughborough University research team on Quantum Systems Engineering. How do you apply classical SE methods, like drawing a context diagram and analysing interactions across the system boundary, when entanglement and observability means that there are now elements of the system that are now simultaneously inside and outside the system boundary?

The best paper presented was by Lukas Macha, in the process of completing a doctoral thesis on integrating MBSE (in the form of SysML v1) and multiple simulations to converge on an optimised set of design parameters. The published paper gives only a brief summary of the methods used, but a detailed discussion with the author revealed the high quality of the work, well worth a follow-up.”

Paul Davies 
MA (Cantab), C.Eng, CSEP, MINCOSE
Principal Consultant & Course Presenter

(From left to right) PPI Principal Consultant and Course Presenter Paul Davies, with PPI Business Development Manager and Senior Engineer René King.

Workshop presentation by Jessica Korzeniowska (Principal Engineer, Good Witch Systems Engineering Ltd).

Lukas Macha (CTI ISEP Course alumni) winning ‘Best Paper Award.’

(From left to right) Malcom Thomas (President of INCOSE UK), Jon Holt (Technical Director of INCOSE UK), Lukas Macha (PhD Researcher at University of Bath).

PPI sponsoring the after dinner speaker.

(From left to right) Dr. Eluned Lewis (Qinetiq Senior Fellow) with Malcom Thomas (President of INCOSE UK).

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