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The Sustainable Minerals Institute, The University of Queensland, Australia

The University of Queensland has a rich history of world class education and research associated with the minerals industry. The Sustainable Minerals Institute (SMI) is building on this very strong base to expand and diversify minerals-related research and postgraduate education within the broad context of sustainable development.

Since its founding in 2001, SMI has embarked on the task of working with the industry to understand and implement the principles of sustainable development. Over the last six years, SMI has steadily built expertise related to sustainable development and it has engaged widely with the industry on a very diverse range of challenges with a sustainability focus.

The keys to SMI are the diversity of skills within the Institute and the capability to link these skills in novel ways. People with backgrounds in technical, environmental and social disciplines make up SMI. It is this blend of skills which allows SMI to make significant contributions to the advancement of sustainable development within the industry.

The SMI research themes are mining, mineral processing, environment, risk and safety, social responsibility, water, sustainable development and specialized research.

SMI today possesses a diverse range of skills relevant to the challenges of the Australian and International Minerals industry. SMI and its Centres has within the one organisation the capacity to engage effectively with the industry from geology to mining, processing and disposal, with over-arching skills in risk and safety, environment, social responsibility and water.

The Centre for Mined Land Rehabilitation (CMLR) was established in 1993 and was a founding Centre of the Sustainable Minerals Institute (SMI) in 2001. CMLR addresses the minerals industry’s environmental challenges with quality science and translates research outcomes into practices that lead to continual improvement of rehabilitation and the protection of environmental values. The Centre’s focus is preventing, minimising and remediating mining environmental impacts by providing research, education and professional development in the sustainability area.

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Universidad de la Serena


Universidad de La Serena, Chile

The Universidad de La Serena calls the city of La Serena in the Coquimbo Region of Chile, home. It is an autonomous Public Law Corporation that was founded in March of 1981 by the fusion of two institutions that were present in the city at that time; Universidad de Chile and the former Universidad Técnica del Estado.

Since its beginnings as an autonomous university, the Universidad de La Serena has continually strengthened its academic abilities by using policies aimed at work quality in response to the needs of the regions and the country. One of the developmental focal points is related to mining and environmental sustainability, an area sculpted by the university’s history, strengths and regional/national interests.  

Department of Mining Engineering: "A doorway to the world of mining and the environment"

The Department of Mining Engineering, part of the Engineering Faculty, is the continuation of the courses that were created by scientist and engineer, Ignacio Domeyko, at the Liceo de Hombres de La Serena in 1838 that included courses in mining, chemistry, and metallurgy.

Part of the mission is to find talented youths that can excel in the undergraduate and graduate programs such as Environmental Engineering and Mining Engineering. At the same time there is interest in contributing to the development of innovative technologies related to the department and that can have an impact on the regional and national scale.

The Department of Mining Engineering fundamentally forms professional careers in Civil Engineering in Mining, Mining Execution Engineering and Environmental Civil Engineering.

Within its educational strengths, the Department of Mining Engineering has a “Mina Escuela” where the students can take part in practical activities interrelated to their professional development. “Mina Escuela” is also home to the “Centro Experimental Mina El Brillador”, a center for innovative technology development and human capital training, all alongside companies and institutions related to mining and the environment.

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Powering professional development for sustainable mining

Gecamin is a company with 18 years of experience organizing technical and international conferences for the mining industry. Our conferences aim to inform and inspire professionals from all over the world, fostering the exchange of best practices and innovative experiences.

Over 23,000 professionals have attended our events and have been trained in areas fundamental to the mining industry. These areas include Geology and Mining, Mineral Processing, Hydrometallurgy, Sustainability and Environment, Water and Energy, Maintenance and Automation, and Human Capital.

Gecamin seeks to contribute to the sustainable development of the mining industry by openly addressing its most pressing concerns and by offering a platform for knowledge exchange that aims at identifying the most sustainable solutions.

In 2015, Gecamin organized 9 conferences and 9 short courses, with a total of 696 technical presentations, gathering 2.416 delegates from 57 countries. Additionally, a total of 623 delegates from mining sites attended, and a book with the proceedings was published for each conference.

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