Connect with a mentor or expert

This year there are a panel of experts and mentors available for anyone considering entering the competition.


Who are the mentors?

To find out more about the experts and mentors see the 'who's listening' tab or feature grid below.

How do I register for a 1:1 session?

You can register for a virtual 1:1 session with these mentors, which are designed to assist your understanding of the issues and considerations of the competition before completing your submission. Schedule a session by filling out the form below.

How do I get in touch?

Ask one of our mentors or experts a question using the forum below or fill out the request form and we’ll put you in touch with them directly.

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Moderation Policy

These are the people that are listening and responding to your questions.

Victoria Clarke

Coordinator Waste and Amenity Programs, Waste and Recycling, City of Melbourne

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Strategic resource recovery projects
  • Circular economy principles
  • Complex city systems
  • Waste and recycling management

Will McIntosh

Open Data Lead, City of Melbourne

Specialty areas for questions:

  • City of Melbourne Open Data Platform
  • Open data API (Socrata)
  • Dataset integration
  • Waste datasets

Phil Ore

CEO and Co-Founder at 25eight Group. Co-Founder of Entrepreneurs&Co. Pitch Mentor for Startup Victoria

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Strategy
  • Marketing
  • Pitching your idea
  • Humanising technology

Ghian Tjandaputra

Partnerships Coordinator, The Australia-Indonesia Centre

Specialty areas for questions:

  • International engagement
  • Program management
  • Marketing

Darren Sutton

Founder of The Common Purpose Collective, leading circular innovation leader and strategic designer of the Infiniti Canvas

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Circular economy principles
  • Circular innovation and product market fit
  • Systems design and scaling
  • Circular commercialization strategy

Kaitlin Reid

Director, Reground

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Social Enterprise, innovation as a small business
  • Practical behaviour change
  • Designing and providing a service for small business and working with councils
  • Waste systems and behaviour in businesses

Diletta Legowo

Marketing & Partnerships Coordinator, SPARK Deakin

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Partnerships with local organisations
  • Life in Indonesia (cultural aspects, values, public opinions)
  • Tech innovation
  • Creative economy

Adrian Sulaeman

Managing Director, 11th Space

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Accounting & financial reporting
  • Financial analysis
  • Business process & operations
  • Business development

Kennie Kurniawan

Marketing Manager, 11th Space

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Marketing strategy
  • Brand management
  • Market research
  • Digital marketing

Tim Bright

Events Manager, Melbourne Accelerator Program

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Events
  • Project management/operations
  • Partnerships/marketing
  • Product/digital systems and platforms

Abena Ofori

Social Impact Manager, Melbourne Accelerator Program

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Social impact
  • Early-stage venture validation techniques
  • Pitching
  • Project management / operations

Suneel Jethani

Engagement Manager and Research Fellow, Open Data, Digital Design and Innovation, Department of Premier and Cabinet, Victorian Government

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Data storytelling
  • Open data Platforms and portals (Vic Gov)
  • Qualitative research methods
  • Data ethics and governance

Simon Lockrey

Senior Lecturer - School of Design, RMIT University, Executive Director - Glowpear, Project Lead - Fight Food Waste CRC Project 1.1.1 (DIRECT Commercialisation), Board Member - International Sustainable Development Research Society, Vice President - Automotive Historians Australia

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Sustainability strategy
  • Innovation
  • Co-design
  • New product development

Dr. Husam Wafai

Programs manager and technical advisor at Hatch Quarter

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Fibre-Composite materials
  • Data Science and predictive modelling
  • Numerical simulation - Finite Element Method.
  • Mechanical behavior and Materials science of structural and functional materials

Melanie Oke

Circular Economy Lead at Sustainability Victoria

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Circular economy concepts and models
  • Waste avoidance and recycling
  • Community and stakeholder engagement
  • Sustainability Victoria’s programs

Laura-Lee Innes

Associate Professor in Environmental Engineering at Monash University

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Waste contaminants and waste management
  • Infrastructure and technologies
  • Waste pathways to environment and human health impact
  • Waste and contamination policy, legislation and regulation

Sam Pinner

Founder of Can-i-Park and overall winner of the Open Innovation Competition 2019 on Safe Mobility.

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Ideation
  • Prototyping & validating your idea
  • Submitting your idea
  • Pitching your idea

Sam Amirebrahimi

Developer and Community Relations Lead, Oceania, HERE Technologies

Specialty areas for questions:

  • Location/spatial data management and analysis and visualisation
  • Innovation and web application design & development
  • Project management
  • Pitching and presentation

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Mentors and experts

Waste and the Circular Economy