Taking place from 16-18 March 2020 at the magnificent Horseshoe Bay Resort in Austin, Texas, the US edition of our HSE Insight Summit will bring together senior health and safety decision-makers and business leaders from across North America to discuss industry challenges, opportunities and current best practice.

The summit will focus on key topics such as: how to build a safety culture using management software tools, leadership and training; improving process safety; and revisiting risk management for a rapidly changing environment.

From case studies that lift the lid on operations inside best-in-class organizations, to workshops and collaborative sessions that focus on real challenges and future technology innovations, to one-to-one meetings with industry peers offering practical advice tailored to your specific needs, the summit provides you with everything you need to implement your key projects more effectively.

Our Approach

Every GDS Summit has one stated aim: to help attending executives implement their key projects more effectively. We do this by developing an in-depth understanding of those executives' project needs, the business outcomes they want to achieve, and the challenges they face in terms of hitting those goals.

Who Attends

Our summits are designed for executives looking to take their business to the next level – from market-leading brands to disruptive new entrants. As such, we’ve worked with some of the world’s best-loved and most forward-thinking businesses.
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Past Attendees

At previous events we've helped executives from some the world's most significant firms - as well as the most forward-thinking - to address their project challenges.
Image of JA Rodriguez
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JA Rodriguez
Global Senior Leader EHS
Raytheon
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David McMichen
Director of Safety & Health
Georgia Power Company
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Obed Varela
Director, Environmental Health & Safety
Takeda Pharmaceuticals
Image of Angelo Miklos
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Angelo Miklos
Global EHS Director
PPG Industries
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John Dony
Director Campbell Institute
National Safety Council
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Michael Hagerty
VP Safety & Security
Flowers Foods
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Andrew Martinez
VP Safety, Security & Business Resiliency
Southern California Edison (SCE)
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Jack Moss
Director of Health, Safety and Risk – Global Manufacturing Operations
Blue Diamond Growers
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Paige Goff
VP Sustainability
Domtar Corporation
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John Green
SVP EHS & Chief Safety Officer
Aecon
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Bill Hilton
Director of Safety Services
Walt Disney Parks & Resorts

6 Challenges in Health, Safety & Environment

Our summit is focused on solving your strategic challenges
  • 1. How to Align Safety Management with The Goals of Your Business
  • 2. Leadership and Employee Engagement
  • 3. Choose and Use: Digital Transformation & Emerging Technologies in the Workplace
  • 4. Risk Planning: Predicting & Preventing Injury
  • 5. EHS Data Management Strategy
  • 6. To Secure Executive Engagement and Accountability For All Aspects of a Lasting Safety Culture
Apply to attend

Summit Schedule

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Monday March 16, 2020
Summit registration
1:00pm - 6:00pm

Join us at 1.00 pm when registration opens to collect your badge, check-in, meet the on-site team, and start your 2.5 day Summit experience.

Solution provider briefing
2:00pm - 2:30pm

Our VP of Sales will brief you on the next 2 ½ days at the summit, giving you all the information you’ll need for your 1-2-1 meetings, the networking sessions and what to expect to maximise your summit experience.

Welcome remarks and delegate briefing
2:30pm - 2:45pm

Our Master of Ceremonies will kick off the Summit with a welcome brief and orientation session, giving you all the information you need to maximize your Summit experience.

Panel Discussion
2:45pm - 3:30pm
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
From Tech to Talent: How EHS Disruptors Impact The Way We Measure Safety

Where should we be focusing our resources time and energy as the landscape of EHS evolves?
– How will culture transformation, technology, AI and other disruptors impact the way we manage safety, and the expectation of EHS leaders in 2020
– How can we improve effectiveness of safety processes by changing the way we measure safety
– How to identify leading metrics and indicators and utilize them.
– What strategic measure can we put in place to fix the system and drive change?

Interview
3:30pm - 3:50pm
A one on one interview diving into the details of how to prepare yourself for the realities of one of the industry's top challengers.
Level Up: How to Break Through an EHS Career Plateau

Occupational safety and health professionals benefit from professional development in many ways that stretch far beyond the need to maintain certification requirements. Their workplaces benefit as well when employees are better protected from injury and illness.

The safety profession changes quickly. So, it is imperative to stay on top of the latest trends, best practices, rules and laws. Professional development enables executives to focus on different aspects or areas of EHS which may not be as exposed in general day to day work.

What limits progression in EHS roles, and what are the best strategies to enable professionals to propel themselves to the next level.

Roundtable Track 1
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Aligning Safety Management with The Goals of Your Business

How do you position EHS as a pivotal factor in business progression and success?

EHS roles often are as much about relationships as they are about the work itself. How to understand the bigger picture and align the work you are doing to larger business goals of your corporation

Roundtable Track 2
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Leadership and Sustainable Culture Management

Policies don’t save lives, keeping employees safe starts with human behaviour. As an EHS Leader, how do you Manage, Measure and Maintain Safety Culture?

How do you identify where the most challenging areas are in culture management within your organisation? How do you build strategic game plan to combat these?

What can we learn from strategic initiatives EHS leaders are utilising, how do you measure culture change and how does this differ throughout the industry?

Roundtable Track 3
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Talent, Training and the Employee Demographic Shift
headshot of Jill Raymond
Jill Raymond
Global EHS & Sustainability Director - Porex

There has been great transformation of the work force in recent years. The professional landscape has gone from regional to global, this makes uniform training and development across such an expansive organisation footprint a challenge.

What can you do to market your company to ensure you are bringing in the best talent, while simultaneously educating, upskilling and maximising value in your current workforce.

Roundtable Track 4
Session 1 - Challenges
3:00pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
Choose and Use: EHS Software

Selection and implementation of EHS software is a critical and complex task. With so many options on the market how should EHS leaders approach taking on new systems to monitor and control H&S at their organisation.

Which tools are best to reduce risk, save time and keep your employees safe? What are the best avenues to measure impact and how can you justify investment?

Roundtable Track 5
Session 1 - Challenges
3:50pm - 5:00pm
It’s all about identifying your challenges. What are the key questions that keep you up at night? What solutions are you looking for? Find common ground.
EHS Data Management Strategy

One of the major challenges associated with EHS data management is the sheer volume of data which is being created, and while there are many solutions available to help combat this, the variety and number of solutions often makes the task more complicated. What are some of the challenges associated with implementing a SMS? What regulatory framework may be problematic in industry implementation? What processes and procedures could be used to mitigate the complexity of the program?

Roundtable feedback
5:00pm - 5:30pm

This is a show and tell with the entire delegation, lead by the roundtable moderators. Hear other challenges, perspectives, and topics that will set the tone for the Summit.

Networking drinks
6:00pm - 7:00pm

A casual setting to network and meet the rest of the attendees and discuss relevant topics at your leisure.

Gala dinner
7:00pm - 10:00pm

Join us for our Gala Dinner & Keynote Speaker. An opportunity to network with your peers in a social environment with a three course dinner and wine whilst listening to an industry leader discuss a key topic.

Keynote
8:00pm - 8:30pm
Our Keynote speaker will be addressing the entirety of Summit attendees during our Gala Dinner. They will be going beyond the 'brand story' and sharing their experience and the real truths of tackling a challenge that is shaping the industry.
Gala dinner keynote, Q&A: We're Just Wired That Way

What can science tell us about the ways in which we evaluate risk and interact with hazards? The more we understand about the brain the easier it is to intervene and encourage productive management of human safety. How is our attitude towards risk hardwired into our brains and what can we do about it?

Tuesday March 17, 2020
Breakfast
7:00am - 7:50am

Please come down and join us for breakfast and prepare for a day of workshops, keynotes, debates and panels.

Welcome Remarks
7:50am - 8:00am

Our Master of Ceremonies will brief you into the day 2 program to make sure you are in the right place at the right time.

Panel Discussion
8:00am - 8:30am
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
Quantifying Safety Culture
headshot of Kal Johnson
Kal Johnson
VP HSSE - Venture Global LNG

Within EHS there is pressure to report and publish incidents and injuries, however there is little pressure to publicly report metrics which emphasize positive developments in safety. This creates a situation where there is a constant focus on the negative elements of EHS within a corporation. What can we do to change this attitude?
– How do EHS executives measure developments in safety culture. What can we learn from comparing initiatives leaders use in different industrial sectors?

Keynote
8:30am - 9:00am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Brain-Centric Reliability: Creating Effective Layers of Protection for Risk
headshot of Ranji Walia
Ranji Walia
PhD, Principal Consultant - DEKRA

DEKRA scientist Rajni Walia will present on the Brain-Centric Reliability layers of protection for a risk management approach. Within the presentation, the speaker will discuss some of the limitations of the human brain and the importance of creating risk profile alignment, enabling an organization to utilize events as learning platforms, and the neuroscience of leadership messaging.

Keynote
9:00am - 9:30am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Strategic SIF intervention

Over the past decade the US has seen remarkable improvement in the rate of non-serious workplace. However, the number of life-changing injuries and fatal incidents has been on a much slower decline. In fact, it has increased in the past three years. How can we identify, measure and limit exposure to precursors. That lead to serious injury and fatality?

Oxford Style Debate and Live Polling
9:30am - 10:00am
One Topic. Two experts. Two opinions. You'll get the chance to vote on where you stand before the session starts. We'll then hear from our two experts, to see if they can sway your opinion when you participate in the closing vote.
Drug Testing Employees: Is 0 Tolerance Still a Viable Option?

Drug legalization across many US states is a force of change in vocational drug tolerance policy. Employers are often unsure on how to handle drug testing within their organisation, therefore risk profiles are increasing. How should EHS professionals approach this change? How progressive can EHS leaders be when it comes to this sensitive topic? Should we approach with conservative caution, or optimism?

Coffee & Networking Break
10:00am - 10:20am

Take a break and refuel whilst networking and socializing with your peers.

Case Study
10:20am - 11:00am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Building A Business Case for Safety

EHS professionals are often faced with too many projects and not enough funds to complete them. Buy-in from key stakeholders is more effective when EHS initiatives align with broader organizational strategies and objectives. Building a compelling business case for employee safety is essential for progress.

Workshop
11:05am - 11:45am
An industry expert will lead an interactive workshop tackling common challenges and scenarios, engaging the audience to confront the issues and discuss ideas. What will your proposed solutions be?
The Role of Leadership in Promoting a Safety Culture

While there are many factors that contribute to effective EHS management within a company, the most critical is strong, committed and engaged leadership within an organization. At DuPont, strong leadership from the C-Suite to middle-management has been the most important component of a successful management system that integrates EHS in every corner of the company.

But in today’s business environment, the more formal definition of leadership and how it is applied within an organization is evolving. Organizations are now facing new realities and business trends in which a smaller, more global workforce must assume greater responsibilities and transfer knowledge among one another more often. How can we ensure workers are brought onboard and trained quickly to handle multiple tasks, and how should employers navigate a changing workforce?

Panel Discussion
11:50am - 12:30pm
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
Best Practices in Employee Engagement
headshot of Britt Howard
Britt Howard
Group Director, Assurance (HSE, Quality, and Risk) - Worley
headshot of Scott Cone
Scott Cone
Senior Director, Health and Safety - Sysco

As baby boomers retire, health & safety programs must progress to keep millennials engaged. How will the employee demographic shift impact EHS leaders? What are the best practices to engage employees? What do you do differently to appeal to the younger generation?

Keynote
12:30pm - 1:00pm
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Cloud-Based Data Intelligence for Environmental Health and Safety and Quality

Cloud computing solutions are increasing flexibility, speed and reducing costs across industries. How can this technology be harnessed effectively for EHS management? What are the major challenges associated with moving your data management to the cloud?

Networking Lunch
1:00pm - 1:45pm

Join us for a sit-down lunch, and a chance to catch up on emails and get ready for the afternoon.

Roundtable
Session 2 - Discovery
1:50pm - 2:40pm
Learning and sharing with your group. What are the solutions? Are they readily available? What path are you going to take?
Drill Down Roundtables

1. How to Align Safety Management with The Goals of Your Business

2. Leadership and Employee Engagement

3. Choose and Use: EHS Software

4. Choose and Use: EHS Hardware

5. EHS Data Management Strategy

Workshop
2:40pm - 3:20pm
An industry expert will lead an interactive workshop tackling common challenges and scenarios, engaging the audience to confront the issues and discuss ideas. What will your proposed solutions be?
An Executive Discussion:: Driving and Sustaining a culture of Continuous Improvement in Safety
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Phil McIntyre
Managing Director of Business Development and Marketing - Performance Solutions by Miliken

For the last several years, we’ve all heard the common refrain ‘put safety first on each agenda’. While that statement proved powerful and effective years ago, it’s simply not enough anymore. Putting Safety first on each agenda is now table stakes. To move your Safety Culture/Performance to World Class Standards this workshop will cover those steps necessary to empower your workforce, create a perpetual system of continuous improvement in Safety, and the role you play in this transformation.

Key takeaways:

  1. Understand how to move your safety organization from involved to engaged to empowered
  2. Examining the snowman… learn how each part of your organization has a unique and critical role to play in your safety performance
  3. Your safety ‘infrastructure’ – as defined by Milliken & Co. – is the key lever to continuous improvement and sustainment of the gains in your safety processes

 

Case Study
3:25pm - 4:05pm
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Emerging Technology and a New Wave of EHS Opportunity
headshot of Mandar Phadke
Mandar Phadke
General Manager EHS - FieldCore a GE Company

Industry 4.0 is here. While the adoption of new technology poses new risks to our employees it also offers new opportunities for development in EHS. How can EHS executives make savvy decisions to harness and incorporate new tech into safety management systems and take advantage of all industry 4.0 has to offer.

Panel Discussion
4:10pm - 5:50pm
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
Contractor Prequalification a Management Strategy

Hiring contractors for various projects has become the most common way of executing work. However, the gaps EHS professionals face regarding contractor management can be deadly. Hear from safety professionals who are working to mitigate risk and increase productivity by extending the culture of safety to all site workers.

Oxford Style Debate and Live Polling
5:50pm - 6:30pm
One Topic. Two experts. Two opinions. You'll get the chance to vote on where you stand before the session starts. We'll then hear from our two experts, to see if they can sway your opinion when you participate in the closing vote.
Is Work to Zero Achievable?

All organisations are geared towards a goal of 0 workplace fatalities. However, wile we can work towards eliminating SIFs, there is significant debate over whether it is reasonable to eliminate risks entirely. Therefore, is work to 0 really an achievable goal?

Attendee downtime
6:30pm - 7:30pm

A needed break after a content filled day. Please use this time as you wish prior to joining us for our night 2 seated dinner.

Networking drinks
7:30pm - 8:00pm

A casual setting to network and meet the rest of the attendees and discuss relevant topics at your leisure.

Dinner & Entertainment
8:00pm - 10:00pm

Join us for our night two Gala Dinner, which will be in a casual and inviting setting.

Wednesday March 18, 2020
Breakfast
7:30 am - 8:20 am

Please come down and join us for breakfast and prepare for a day of workshops, keynotes, debates and panels.

Welcome Remarks
8:20 am - 8:30 am

Our Master of Ceremonies will brief you into the day 3 program to make sure you are in the right place at the right time.

Keynote
8:30 am - 9:00 am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
The Nature of Risk

Businesses face nature-related risks when they cause major and disruptive impacts within nature that result in financial losses, sanctions, or other legal action, or when climate changes impact the working environment causing physical risk to employees and customers. These aren’t theoretical risks; they are present and demonstrably growing.

Learn from WWF how you can prepare for the changing landscape of business operations in the field as our climate continues to change. What can businesses do to slow decrease their environmental impact? How can we think ahead and keep our employees safe.

Keynote
9:00 am - 9:30 am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
EHS Cultural Transformation: Before Technology Can Happen

The biggest mistake organizations make is believing technology to solve ALL their EHS issues. Although technology can help an organization standardize reporting, generate useful metrics and instill a higher degree of organizational accountability, being void of sound and effective EHS policies, program and procedures often render technology useless.

This case-study presentation will tell the story of Sarah Cannon’s CHS (Colleague Health and Safety) cultural transformation and the positive impact culture change has made on the organization. It will also highlight the changes Sarah Cannon had to make to ensure their future investment in technology would yield the desire results to improve and sustain their proactive, leading indicator-based colleague health and safety programs.

Roundtable
Session 3 - Outcomes
9:30 am - 10:10 am
What does it all mean. Tracing back through two days of work, where are we? What you are bringing back to the office with you.
Drill Down Roundtables

1. How to Align Safety Management with The Goals of Your Business

2. Leadership and Employee Engagement

3. Choose and Use: EHS Software

4. Choose and Use: EHS Hardware

5. EHS Data Management Strategy

Coffee & Networking Break
10:10 am - 10:30 am

Take a break and refuel whilst networking and socializing with your peers.

Case Study
10:35 am - 11:15 am
A brand exec takes you behind the scenes, providing insight into a successful project implementation – what worked, what didn’t and which pitfalls to avoid.
Keeping Lone Workers Safe

Lone workers occupy some of the most challenging and dangerous jobs. In a crowded marketplace of lone worker safety solutions, organizations are faced with many options for improving lone worker safety.

What are the best tactics to keep your lone workers safe and engaged in safety procedure?

Workshop
11:20 am - 12:00 am
An industry expert will lead an interactive workshop tackling common challenges and scenarios, engaging the audience to confront the issues and discuss ideas. What will your proposed solutions be?
Thinking outside of the box: how Gensuite and Solvay have partnered to deploy a digital HSE system to address dynamic program needs

With major factors such as stringent government regulations and guidelines, ever-changing business needs and increased health, safety and environmental awareness among diverse organizations, the overall adoption of digital HSE management solutions is steadily increasing at a rapid rate. What’s important to consider when looking to make the switch to digitized HSE management is how it will work with your company’s unique program needs.

During this session, Gensuite (cloud-based compliance and management HSE software solution) will co-present with Solvay (leading advanced materials and specialty chemicals company), to share key aspects on why it’s important to choose a flexible digital HSE software solution and how to make it work for your team—to streamline operations, achieve regulatory compliance, protect your team and boost productivity!

 

Panel Discussion
12:00 am - 12:30 pm
The perspectives of 4-5 industry experts into one of the key challenges we're all facing today. This will be moderated to create a session of different perspectives, opinions and tangible takeaways of how our panelists are tackling them.
Closing panel & wrap up: EHS Evolution

Whats on the horizon for EHS management?

Buffet Lunch
12:30 am - 2:00 pm

Before you head home, make sure you grab something from our buffet-style lunch for your journey ahead.

Summit Location

Horseshoe Bay Resort, Austin, Texas

Our events take place at some of the most prestigious venues in the world. Five-star accommodation, dining and amenities make attending one of our summits both business and pleasure. Being productive has never been so much fun.

Popular content from our EHS Summits

GDS Summits host experts to help experts. Our speakers are leading HSE executives willing to share their insight to change the industry and the world in critical ways.

To discuss how GDS Summits can help you solve your project challenges contact us on: 0117 921 4000 or email sayhello@gdsgroup.com.

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