What does the Society of Construction Law Australia do?

We are a not for profit organisation and the key objective of SoCLA is to promote to promote the education, study and research (and publication of the useful results of such research) in the field of construction law and related subjects both in Australia and overseas for the benefit of the public and the construction industry.

Where is it based?

The Society is located at:

National Secretariat, Ground Floor, 180 Phillip Street, SYDNEY NSW 2000

Web Address: https://www.scl.org.au(link is external)

What is SoCLA's geographical footprint?

SoCLA is a national organisation – its members and Board members are from around Australia and the Subcommittees and activities of SoCLA are carried out in all major capital cities and areas where there is a strong focus on the construction industry.

SoCLA is also a part of an international network of SCLs including UK, NZ, North America, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Africa, Caribbean and European Societies.

How long has SoCLA been in existence?

The Society was formed in 2009.

How many members does SoCLA have?

There are currently over 1100 members.

Who are SoCLA's members?

SoCLA’s members are made up of a variety of participants in the construction industry and include:

  • Solicitors
  • Barristers
  • In-house counsel
  • Construction contractors
  • Developers
  • Architects
  • Engineers
  • Quantity Surveyors
  • Consultants
  • Arbitrators
  • Mediators
  • Project managers

Who runs SoCLA and what is the structure?

An elected Board comprising 9 members.

There are 4 directors who are also members of the Executive and who hold the following positions – Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary and Treasurer.

There are also a variety of Subcommittees which operate under the Board which are as follows:

  • Academic                                                
  • Communications                                      
  • Conferences                                                                                        
  • Memberships                                           
  • Events                                                                             
  • Thought Action                               
  • Young Constructors

Who is on the Board of SoCLA?

The Board of SoCLA consists of the following:

  • Ben Davidson (Chair)
  • Sean Brady (Vice Chair)
  • Kevin Pascoe (Secretary)
  • Kate Bower (Treasurer)
  • Michael Gibson
  • Emma Lampard
  • Caroline Beaumaris
  • Kiri Parr
  • Jennifer Irwin

Further information in relation to the Board is available here

Who is the Society's Patron

The Patron of the Society is Justice Katie Stynes.

Justice Stynes was appointed to the Supreme Court of Victoria in June 2020, and is the Judge in Charge of the Technology, Engineering and Construction List.  Prior to her appointment Justice Stynes had a busy practice as a commercial barrister specialising in disputes concerning major infrastructure projects.  Justice Stynes comes to the role of Patron with a wealth of knowledge of the construction landscape in Australia, as we are pleased to have her support for the Society's objectives.

What is the role of the Subcommittees?

Each subcommittee has a different set of objectives and goals which are set by the relevant members. To access this information please click here 

What are the key activities of SoCLA?

The key activities and initiatives undertaken by SoCLA include:

  • Events – events are held in all major capital cities and also areas where there is a strong focus on the construction industry. Some events involve international video link ups with the SCL international community. Many of SoCLA’s events also attract CPD points;
  • Conferences – an annual Conference is held and around 120 – 150 people attend. Conferences have been held in Perth (2010), Brisbane (2011), Melbourne (2012), Sydney (2013), Victor Habour (2014), Melbourne (2015), Canberra (2016) , Gold Coast (2017), Hunter Valley (2018), Perth (2019), Hobart (2022);
  • Communication - Provide a communications platform to provide members with access to resources, initiatives and research (including website, newsletter, social media, podcasts and education) in the field of construction law and related areas;
  • Kindred Organisation Collaboration  - which allow a more diverse platform for Society events and increased networking opportunities. The opportunity to host boardroom-style events which allow for more targeted event planning with a key sector focus (such as through Consult Australia), specific interest group engagement (such as through Engineers Without Borders), and target group engagement (through a boardroom style format focussing on senior stakeholder engagement);
  • Professional Mentoring - participate in a national, industry-wide mentoring program;
  • National Charrett Moot – the ability to participate in the annual Charrett Moot which is named after Donald Charrett who is a former board member of SoCLA;
  • The Brooking Prize - named after the Hon Robert Brooking AO QC – this is run annually and entrants are required to submit a 6000 word paper and prizes are awarded for the Brooking Prize, Student Prize and Commendations;
  • Scholarship Support Fund – Grants are given for construction law research projects;
  • Thought Leadership – SoCLA is a leader in critical thinking and establishes initiatives to identify efficiencies and improvements in the industry.

What does the Constitution say?

Our Constitution can be found here.


Details regarding membership can be found here.