Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Gavin Dispain and Web Standards in Canberra

Gavin Dispain talking on Australia Government web sitesAfter the last Web Standards Group meeting in Canberra, I invited the organizer, Gavin Dispain, to give a guest lecture in the web design course at ANU, on web design in government agencies. The lecture is today (ANU staff are welcome to attend). I needed to provide an introduction to Gavin for the lecture and it seemed appropriate to do it as a web page (this blog entry), with some web links.

Gavin is from the Australian Department of the Environment and Water Resources. He spoke at the 7th Web Standards Group meeting in Canberra, January 2007 on "A Web Standards Audit of 105 Australia Government Web Sites".

Gavin is part of the Core of the Web Standards Group and organizes Canberra meetings. The group is passionate about using standards to create web pages. These are the same standards the students learn about in the course. They then have to do an assignment where they assess a web site and modify it for compliance with standards.

I turned to the web to get some background on Gavin and his work. A quick search found a photo of Gavin giving the talk. There are also a lot of web pages praising Gavin's work on web standards. But there is little about his background.

Gavin Dispain at SCUWith a little digging I was able to find he studied for a Bachelor of Applied Science (Coastal Management) at Southern Cross University, graduating in 1997. He won the Centre for Coastal Management Prize, the John S. Lake Memorial Prize, and the Royal Australian Institute of Parks and Recreation Prize). His Honours, also at SCU earned him the University Medal. He completed a Master of Internet Communication at University of Canberra 2005.

Gavin joined Environment Australia as a graduate and was promoted to be the Marine Group Web Administrator. He is now the Department's Web Manager. From there he has made a distinguished contribution to the development of web sites across the Federal Government.

For details of past and future WSG Meetings in Canberra, visit the web page and joint the list. Slides and podcasts of some talks are available.

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