We’ve already past the first quarter of 2024 and if the past three months are any indication, this year is shaping up to be one of the most exciting yet.

You may have noticed that ACA has shifted gears this past quarter. Over the past couple of years, we’ve been working closely with government, industry, academia and unions to help build a shared understanding of the challenges facing Australia’s construction industry and the solutions. The industry is starting to see pockets of positive change, and we are making a conscious effort to highlight the good things underway. As we anticipate updates to the National Partnership Agreement and eagerly await the release of NSW’s Construction Playbook, it’s clear that 2024 holds immense potential for nationwide industry transformation.

Environmental sustainability

Just last week, the NSW Government launched its Decarbonising Infrastructure Delivery Policy, complete with measurement guidance and a roadmap. #ImagineWhen upfront carbon emissions from material production and construction become central considerations across all project stages, with consistent carbon information collection for government projects becoming the norm.

Speaking of decarbonisation, this quarter ACA released a pivotal report emphasising the important role of decarbonising the construction industry in achieving Australia’s net zero ambition. Construction is notoriously difficult to decarbonise, and while electrification is the preferred route, current technological constraints mean it’s not a short-term solution. To bridge this gap, rapid adoption of low-carbon liquid fuels, particularly renewable diesel, is imperative. We’re urging direct government policy intervention to accelerate the supply and demand for renewable diesel nationwide.

Read the report.


ACA recently welcomed the release of employer gender pay gaps by the Workplace Gender and Equality Agency (WGEA). The publishing of gender pay and leadership data is important for improving diversity in the construction industry. Gender diversity is still a challenge for the construction sector. The gender imbalance is one of the toughest problems we have to solve, because it gives rise to so many other cultural issues which are blockers for improving diversity for all.

In response to this urgent need for change, ACA took proactive measures five years ago. The Board amended its rules to encourage every member to appoint at least one female director, aiming to inject diverse perspectives into leadership discussions and drive tangible improvements across the industry.

Recognising more is needed to address the hurdles that prevent women from joining and also progressing in construction, last May ACA pledged to transform the culture of the industry. As we approach the one-year mark of our culture pledge, we’re proud to report that three of our members – Clough, John Holland and Laing O’Rourke – have achieved the Workplace Gender Equality Agency Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation, with many others well on their way. Members are actively establishing workplace flexibility policies to ensure that every employee has genuine access to flexible working arrangements and we’re tracking progress. Lastly, our efforts to attract a new wave of talent to the industry are gaining momentum. Stay tuned as our attract campaign takes shape!

Through our culture pledge, we’re taking a bottom-up approach to improving industry culture, complemented by top-down initiatives like our collaboration with the Culture Standard. We are looking forward to sharing the findings of the interim research from the projects piloting the culture standard shortly.

Best of the best

ACA and Engineers Australia have announced four outstanding finalists for the construction industry’s most coveted award, the 2024 Australian Construction Achievement Award (ACAA). The ACAA recognises Australia’s best construction project and the companies behind it.

There is just one award up for grabs and a diverse range of projects are competing for it in 2024. This year’s finalists span from roads to rail, water infrastructure to airports. Each project has been delivered in ways that contribute to a more progressive and sustainable construction industry.

We’re seeing construction excellence at its best, but we’re also seeing a real commitment to improving skills and worker wellbeing, as well as approaches to environmentally responsible outcomes.

Now in its 27th year, this premier construction industry Award has again been partnered by some of the major businesses connected with the industry including Caterpillar, Cbus, Gallagher, InEight and InfraBuild.

The winner will be announced on 8 August at a black-tie dinner following our new event, Foundations and Frontiers.

Foundations and Frontiers

There are many things I am excited about this year but one of the most exciting is our new forum, Foundations and Frontiers (#FF24). We’ve created a new construction event modelled on the COP Summit and the World Economic Forum to bring together senior leaders from across the industry, unions, and government, all while providing a truly interactive experience for all attendees. FF24 will be held on 8 August at Doltone House in Sydney. It will comprise both open and exclusive discussions on four key themes: 1. What does good look like, 2. Skills and culture, 3. Financial sustainability, 4. Data-rich future.

The plenary sessions will commence with keynote addresses in the style of TED talks followed by interactive discussions. FF24 promises to be a gathering like no other. Register today.

ACA team

Before I conclude this first newsletter for 2024, I’m delighted to announce our new Head of Policy, Kristin Moss. Kristin has over 20 years’ experience working with government and industry to develop, evaluate and implement policy. Kristin enjoys working with stakeholders to transform abstract concepts and high-level ideas into specific and practical solutions.

Please join us in welcoming Kristin to the team.