Clem Newton-Brown

Travels from: Victoria

The future will be here sooner than you think

Categories: Futurists & Future Trends, Interesting Ideas

Full Presenter Profile & Bio

Clem Newton-Brown has spent a lifetime around politics, law, planning, cities and pushing the boundaries. He started the first water taxi service on the Yarra River in 1992 and around the same time was getting around on a powered scooter, 25 years before the current trend for micro-mobility.

Following service as Deputy Lord Mayor and Member of Parliament, he is now focused on utilising his legal, planning and political skills to help bring about urban aerial mobility in the form of flying taxis. It may seem like an audacious goal but let Clem explain how Melbourne is going to be one of the first cities in the world to get an Uber Air service.

Uber Air has recently announced Melbourne as the first international test city for flying taxis and Clem’s Skyportz business is developing the network of landing infrastructure we are going to need for urban aerial mobility.

Our cities are about to be hit by a transport revolution - think driverless cars, delivery drones, micro-mobility on electric scooters and Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft.

The technology for this revolution already exists today and Clem is at the frontline pushing the boundaries for city planning and regulatory changes which will be required. 

As a former planning barrister, Deputy Lord Mayor of Melbourne and Member of Parliament, Clem has a unique insight into how this transport revolution can be realised. 

In his presentation, Clem can provide insights as to how Uber came to select Melbourne as a test city for urban aerial mobility and what this will mean for Australia. Clem is not just a futurist who predicts the future - he is actually creating the urban environment to facilitate the biggest change the world has seen since the invention of the motor vehicle.

The future will be here sooner than you think and Clem will give you a fascinating insight into this new world.

Speaker Topics

Delivery Drones and Flying Taxis
Clem explores how delivery drones and flying taxis are going to change the way we live
Planning for Future Cities
Planning for cities in an autonomous future driven by electric vehicles and aircraft
Uber Air and Urban Aerial Mobility
Discover the world of aerial mobility and it's influence on the future


Clem’s presentation on the future of urban aerial mobility with Uber Air certainly opened our eyes to the opportunities for our clients in the property sector. He guided us through topics such as the current status of various prototypes aircraft to practical issues around air traffic control, political imperatives, community licence and where property owners can play a role in aerial ride sharing services. He also covered the related topic of drone deliveries (which Google have already started in Australia) and what is required from a regulatory perspective to get our Uber Eats by air. Our team have been given a lot to think about as we prepare for this transport revolution which is going to fundamentally change the way we live and move through cities

CBRE Melbourne

Clem presented at our industry conference on the emerging urban aerial mobility (UAM) capability and associated challenges. Clem has an articulate, well-informed and entertaining style that kept the audience fully engaged. Surrounded by industry folk who believe that UAM reality is still far into the future, Clem was able to deliver a compelling presentation convincing many that future is here already.

Australian Association for Unmanned Systems (AAUS)

Clem was a guest speaker and brought a nuanced and considered perspective to the conversations, thanks to both his breadth and depth of experience, including his first-hand knowledge about commuting on the Yarra as a the pioneer of Melbourne’s first water-taxi service. As a long-time Yarra user, business owner, entrepreneur and former State Government Member of Parliament, Clem was able to offer insights from multiple perspectives based on his own lived experience - a rare find. Clem was nothing short of professional, communicative and respectful. We have no hesitation in recommending Clem as a speaker on transit, innovation and cities.

Open House Melbourne

Clem Newton-Brown - Futurists & Future Trends

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