Future of Office Space Summit: March 2022

About the event

COVID-19 has forced a radical shift in working habits. In demand offices in centralised locations that once teemed with activity are now only at 50% occupancy. How long will this last? Will the office ever be the same again? What does this mean for office landlords, tenants, fund managers, designers and cities? What opportunities does this create for flexible working and flex space?

The Future of Office Space Summit will explore what the new normal will look like for commercial property post COVID-19, and will take a deep dive into many of the big questions, including:

  • What will the pandemic mean for the commercial office market in Australasia?
  • Will the role of the workplace change and how?
  • What will workplace changes mean for commercial property companies and tenants?
  • What will individuals want and need from their place of work?
  • The role of workplace design and innovation in enabling employees to return to work safely
  • Optimising office space – Repurposing office space to meet changing tenant needs
  • Reviewing tenant policy, strategy and leasing arrangements
  • The role of technology in managing challenges associated with the risk of contagion
  • Leveraging digital technologies within office space to attract tenants and enhance their experience


The Future of Office Space Summit has been designed for senior executives involved in the commercial office space sector, including:

  • Building owners/REITs
  • Tenants
  • Brokers/Agencies
  • Fund Managers
  • Property Managers
  • Architects/Workplace Designers
  • Consultants
  • Technology providers


Sydney | Physical & Virtual


March 2022


WeWork Diamond Sponsor
WeWork Diamond Sponsor



Get involved!

2022 Summit will start in








Summit Program

The Future of Office Space Summit 2021 explored what the new normal will look like for the workplace, office space and tenant requirements post COVID-19.

  • Day 1February 17, 2021
  • RE-IMAGINING THE OFFICE - How companies and leaders can reset for growth beyond covid-19

  • 08:00 - 08:40

    Registration & Coffee

  • 08:40 - 08:50

    Welcome Remarks

    By Leon Kantor Co-Founder & COO, FuturePlace
  • 08:50 - 09:15

    What does Covid-19 mean for the commercial office market in Australasia?

    By Ben Burston Chief Economist, Knight Frank Australia
    • Examining the impact of Covid-19 on short and long-term demand for space
    • How will large scale workplace changes alter the relationship between office landlords and tenants?
    • Assessing the likely implications on construction projects and investment returns
  • 09:15 - 09:35

    Future Perfect – Thinking beyond the immediate future and considering what the “new normal” could look like for our cities and workplaces

    By Kate Meyrick Director, Urbis
    • What will be the biggest short and long-term impacts of Covid-19 on how we live and work?
    • What does this mean for office landlords, developers and investors
    • Rethinking office space design to make offices more attractive destinations for employees
  • 09:35 - 09:55

    Exploring the role technology, building & workplace design plays in enabling the safe return to commercial office towers

    By Sheridan Ware Chief Information and Technology Officer, Charter Hall
    • What do employees currently want and is this realistic and achievable?
    • The role of technology in enabling the ongoing safe return to the office
    • Assessing workplace strategies with an emphasis on wellbeing and engagement
  • 09:55 - 10:20

    Fireside Chat: The Future of (We) Work - Redefining the purpose of the office

    By Balder Tol General Manager, Australia - WeWork

    This Parkinson styled conversation will look into how the workplace is being reimagined and the benefits this transformation is realising. In particular, the discussion will examine:

    • Flexibility as the most valued currency
    • Purpose of the office: collaboration, connection, innovation, inspiration
    • Future of the office: wellbeing more than ever a priority
    • The new office: distributed and hub-n-spoke


    Interviewed by:
    Selina Short, Oceania Real Estate and Construction Managing Partner, EY

  • 10:20 - 10:40

    Tenant needs in a current and post pandemic world

    By Leah Ong Head of Real Estate, United Petroleum
    • What kind of office space will companies want and how much office space will companies need?
    • Health first – rethinking the use of communal spaces, shared amenities, and potentially crowded “bottlenecks” within buildings
    • How is technology driving changes in the use of office space?
    • Reviewing policy, strategy and leasing arrangements through a different lens
  • 10:40 - 11:10

    Morning Coffee & Networking

  • 11:10 - 11:30

    Assessing how the pandemic will impact future office leasing

    By Marcus Wraight Head of Leasing, Brookfield Properties
    • Will hub and spoke become the new norm and what does this mean for leasing capacity in the CBD and outer fringe?
    • Examining the rise in demand for pre-fitted office space and whether the trend will continue beyond 2020
    • Analysing tenant renewal and new lease risk
    • The role of tenant experience in driving future office demand
  • Day 1 - Cont.February 17, 2021
  • 11:30 - 12:10

    Panel Discussion: What is the future role of the workplace?

    By Luke Dixon Head of Real Estate Research, AMP Capital
    Panellists include:
    Ben Burston Chief Economist, Knight Frank Australia
    Marcus Wraight Head of Leasing, Brookfield Properties
    Leah Ong Head of Real Estate, United Petroleum
    Lachlan Buchanan Head of Real Estate, Pacific - WeWork
    Moderated by:
    Luke Dixon Head of Real Estate Research, AMP Capital
  • 12:10 - 12:35

    Predicting how the pandemic may impact the design, innovation and build of modern office towers

    By Tom Owens Principal & Managing Director, Gensler
    • What does the decentralised workplace mean for architectural design and construction
    • Examining the rise in demand for pre-fitted office space – will the trend continue beyond 2020?
    • The role of workplace experience in driving future office design, build and demand
    • ESG factors to consider in commercial RE design, build and functional strategy?
  • 12:35 - 13:20

    Panel Discussion: Examining space utilisation, workplace design and technological innovation in the Future of Office Space

    By Tica Hessing Workplace Strategy Manager, Charter Hall

    Workplace design and innovation now more than ever plays a key role in enabling employees to return to work safely. How companies adopt new tools and approaches will determine not only the initial success in bringing their staff back to work, but also their ability to keep them there beyond the short term. In this session we will explore:

    • Examining healthy buildings and tenant experience in the “New Normal”
    • Exploring issues of safety and what this means for all parties?
    • Assessing how best to cater for the Mental Health of your employees
    • Reconfiguring workspace design from a physical perspective
    • The role of technology such as sensors, parking, end of trip facilities and meeting rooms
    • Creating flexibility with connectivity and data for re-occupancy
    Panellists include:
    Mark Mitchell Oceania Premises & Workplace Director, EY
    Craig Baudin Director, Fender Katsalidis
    Paul Edwards General Manager, Strategy & Customer - Mirvac
    Dinesh Malkani Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Smarten Spaces
    Mark Hansen Chief Information Officer, Dexus Property Group
    Moderated by:
    Tica Hessing Workplace Strategy Manager, Charter Hall
  • 13:20 - 14:20

    Networking lunch

  • 14:20 - 15:00

    Panel Discussion: Improving work culture, employee experience and performance through innovative office design and tech

    By Stephen Macdonald Partner, The PropTech Connection
    • Why the post-COVID office will have an even greater focus on collaboration
    • How can employers transform their spaces into FOMO-inducing, must-go destinations?
    • What role will smart technologies play in all of this?
    Panellists include:
    Natalie Devlin Chief Experience Officer, Charter Hall - Australia
    Ciarán Hennessy Head of Technology Strategy & Architecture, Lendlease
    Amanda Steele Executive Managing Director, Property Management, CBRE
    John Corbett Workplace & Real Estate Strategist, Australia and New Zealand, Cisco
    Moderated by:
    Stephen Macdonald Partner, The PropTech Connection
  • 15:00 - 15:30

    Understanding the psychology of place and the emotion behind returning to the office

    By Patrycjca Slawuta CEO, Selfhackathon (NY)

    In this session, we feature prominent psychologist and a renowned Ted Talk presenter. Patrycja wow’s her audience with her thought-provoking approach to complex human relationships and behaviours. In this session she will tackle the psychology of place, the fear of public transport and the strong emotions behind people returning to work and the challenges that may lie ahead.

  • 15:30 - 16:00

    Afternoon Coffee & Networking

  • 16:00 - 16:30

    Examining how technology can enable an Intelligent Workplace

    By Vanessa Sulikowski Distinguished Architect, Australia and New Zealand, Cisco

    It is anticipated the 2021 post pandemic workplace will be very different, both the space itself and the way people use it, is evolving rapidly. Safety, security and wellness has become more important than ever and connecting teams that are now hybrid working across different workspaces is a key priority. AI and technology innovations can enable enhanced automated experiences, contactless interactions options, intelligent notifications, and workspace real-time visibility for more effective workspace usage. This session will explore how technology can help you enable a more intelligent workplace to cater for the evolving ways of working.

    • Examining how a tech infused office can be used to attract tenants and employees
    • How can different stakeholders work together to identify and implement the right technologies?
    • Understanding what solutions are out there and what challenges they address?
    • What is needed to implement these solutions and ultimately who bears the cost?
  • 16:30 - 17:10

    Investors Panel Discussion: After the pandemic; how will commercial property investment change?

    By Tony Massaro Partner - Real Estate Advisory, PwC

    The experience of the last few months has provoked some challenging questions for commercial property investors. With office utilisation slumping to as low as 5% during lockdown and some tech and social media bosses allowing staff to work from home (WFH) indefinitely, there are some serious questions that need addressing. We’ve assembled an expert panel of fund managers and REITs to review what’s in store.

    • How will an economic slowdown impact the performance of the commercial office sector?
    • Is this the end of the office building as we know it or what is next for investors and managers alike?
    • What impact will the downturn have on institutional investors and superfund returns?
    • Will we likely see a draw on capital or possibly a reduction in developments as a result of the slowdown?
    • What is the longer-term outlook for office building returns?

    Panellists include:
    Rob Rayner Chief Executive Officer, RF Corval
    Michelle Dance Funds Manager, Dexus Property Group
    Grant Nichols COF - Fund Manager, Centuria
    Russell Bullen Chief Executive Officer, Quintessential Equity
    Moderated by:
    Tony Massaro Partner - Real Estate Advisory, PwC
  • 17:10 - 17:10

    Closing remarks and end of conference day

  • MasterclassFebruary 18, 2021
  • 08:30 - 17:00


    By Bruce Duyshart Director & Principal, Meld Strategies

    The founder and principal of Meld Strategies, Bruce Duyshart, is a technologist, strategist, and facilitator with a professional background in architecture, planning, design, property development and information technology. He has been at the forefront of innovation within the property industry for the past 25+ years. Over his career he has been involved in successfully implementing multiple ground breaking and award-winning projects. Since establishing Meld Strategies in 2013, he and his team have been involved in over 50 Smart Building projects across Australia. Bruce is a regular speaker on the topic of Smart Buildings and author of ‘Smarter Buildings. Better Experiences.’


    About this Masterclass
    This masterclass is focussed on the technology challenges facing many building managers, tenancy managers and business owners planning to safely return to a new business environment, post the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the course of the day, we’ll take a deep dive into understanding the extensive range of building technologies that can be used to support new, emerging business practices designed to bring us safely and efficiently back into the office.

    Attendees will benefit from a range of insights gained from practical first hand experience by the facilitator, with the opportunity for attendees to interact and share their own lessons learnt. Bring all of your building technology questions and be prepared to share your own experiences.

  • 09:00 - 10:30

    Preparing your building for back to work

    By Bruce Duyshart Director & Principal, Meld Strategies

    Is your building ready for safe occupation?
    Examining the technology stack required to support new safe, healthy work practices.

    • Back to the Future of Work – New emerging technologies to support new work methods
    • Securing your building and workplace
    • Measuring your building
    • Measuring your occupants
    • Measuring your tenancy
    • Planning for success
  • 10:30 - 11:00

    Morning Coffee

  • 11:00 - 12:30

    The Welcome Experience

    By Bruce Duyshart Director & Principal, Meld Strategies

    How do employees and visitors feel welcome and safe entering your workplace?
    Balancing health, safety and experience.

    • Understanding your user journey touch points
    • The challenges of Visitor Management
    • Empowering your employees
    • Car Park Management 101
    • Frictionless Building access
    • Lifts and staircases
    • Concierge & Security Services
    • Emergency evacuations
  • 13:20 - 14:20


  • 13:30 - 15:00

    The New Office Configuration

    By Bruce Duyshart Director & Principal, Meld Strategies

    What technologies can support new and existing workplaces and business processes?

    Areas to consider:

    • Physical vs. Virtual working
    • Identifying the friction points
    • Accessing your Office
    • Measuring your Workplace
    • People Counting
    • Spatial Utilisation
    • Air Quality Measurement
    • Room Booking
    • Desk Booking
  • 15:00 - 15:30

    Afternoon Coffee

  • 15:30 - 17:00

    Creating the right and effective building operations

    By Bruce Duyshart Director & Principal, Meld Strategies

    What types of operational systems can be used to improve building operations?

    Areas to consider:

    • You can’t manage what you can’t measure
    • Smart Amenities
    • Mail room logistics
    • Waste measurement
    • Apps, Apps, Apps
    • Identity Management
    • Skilling key staff
    • Developing your strategy

2021 Speakers


Chief Information and Technology Officer
Charter Hall


Oceania Premises & Workplace Director


Funds Manager
Dexus Property Group


Chief Information Officer
Dexus Property Group


Chief Experience Officer
Charter Hall


Fund Manager – COF


Head of Technology Strategy & Architecture


Executive Managing Director, Property Management


Principal, Managing Director


Head of Leasing
Brookfield Properties


Human Geographer & Tenant Advisor
Cushman & Wakefield


Director City Strategy and Place


Director of Real Estate
Volvo Group Australia


Chief Executive Officer
RF Corval


Head of Real Estate
AMP Capital


Director & Principal
Meld Strategies


Chief Economist
Knight Frank Australia


Chief Executive Officer
Selfhackthon (NY)


General Manager, Strategy & Customer – Commercial Property, Mirvac


Fender Katsalidis


Chief Executive Officer
Quintessential Equity


Distinguished Architect


Partner, Real Estate Advisory


General Manager, Australia


Head of Real Estate, Pacific


Founder & Chief Executive Officer
Smarten Spaces


The Proptech Connection


Workplace Strategist
Cisco Australia


The Future of Office Space Summit is a Hybrid event. This format combines the traditional face-to-face conference with virtual elements, allowing both in-person and virtual attendees to access the same content and networking opportunities simultaneously.

High quality curated content

With four days of expert sessions and industry leading speakers, delve into expertly curated content that you won’t find anywhere else.

Live and on-demand

Wherever you are at the time of the event, you’ll be in control. You’ll have the ability to consume all the content being delivered at your leisure through either a live stream of the physical event or on-demand.

Time efficient

If you are based outside of Sydney and for whatever reason can’t make it to the event in-person, you can save on travel time and accommodation costs while still networking with global industry professionals.

Business matchmaking live

Take part in intelligently curated meetings with like-minded individuals that share similar interests and challenges from all over the world through our AI powered matchmaking delivered via our virtual platform.

Accessible from all your devices

Get insights and network at your fingertips – all content sessions and networking activities will be accessible from your laptop, tablets or mobile devices.

Engage, interact and influence

Make the most of your experience by being a truly active participant. Whether at the event or attending virtually, you’ll have the ability to ask questions, participate in polls, and share your experience with other attendees via break-out sessions.