Phillip Greenham
Firm:
Office:
PO Box 24212
3001
City:
Melbourne
Country:
Australia
Tel:
+61 417 012 144

Questions and Answers:

Who's Who Legal Thought Leaders - Construction

Phillip Greenham has practised construction law for over 35 years. He was a partner in Minter Ellison for 27 years. He now practises as an arbitrator and provides consulting services to participants in the construction industry. Phillip was one of the founding directors of the Society of Construction Law Australia and is a past chair. He is a senior fellow in the master’s programme in construction law at the University of Melbourne.

What is the most fascinating aspect about practising within the construction market?

Two things stand out. First, there is tremendous collegiality, on a worldwide basis, among those who are associated with the construction market. Second, the construction industry is a vibrant industry, critical to improving living conditions around the world and presents daily intellectual and organisational challenges. These two factors result in a dynamic, invigorating and collaborative working environment.

What did you find most challenging about setting up your own advisory practice?

I did not find setting up the practice challenging – it seemed like the most natural thing to do. What I did find challenging was the absence of the close immediate association with colleagues and the ready opportunity to train and mentor young lawyers. I am lucky in that I retain a close connection with MinterEllison and have a terrific relationship with the University of Melbourne. These two connections, in particular, continue to give me exposure to those elements which I might otherwise miss.

What do clients look for in a good adviser?

The confidence to express an opinion. Many practitioners will know the law and can manage the process of contract preparation or dispute resolution. However, where clients can enjoy real value is if an adviser is prepared to make a judgement and express a clear view as to how to move forward. There are always ifs and buts, always pros and cons, but what business needs is clear, confident advice based on deep experience.

How can an expert improve the chances of a successful project outcome?

An expert is not involved in a project on a daily basis. The expert comes and goes as the project demands and can accommodate. In this environment, the most meaningful contribution an expert can make is to equip those who are with the project on a daily basis with the knowledge, insight and confidence to manage the project in the manner which is most likely to enhance project outcomes. The giving of advice is not enough. The advice should be a capital asset left with the client for future benefit.

What impact is the increasing use of amended standard-form contracts having on the practice area?

There has been a trend for the increasing amendment of standard-form contracts so they are “standard-form” in name only. This practice undermines the value of standard-form contracts and indeed the rationale for the existence of standard forms. I have come to increasingly doubt the value of such wide-scale amendment, and find we have reached the point of diminishing returns.

How have procurement models evolved in the market in the past few years?

As in nature, the evolution of procurement models is a persistent feature of the construction landscape. Parties constantly strive to “find a better way”. A few years ago this desire saw the industry focus heavily on alliance contracts and other collaborative forms of contracting. In more recent times there has been a drift away from alliance contracting with a trend towards more “controlled collaboration”. This is seen through early contractor involvement (ECI) models and managing contracting (MC) models. What my 35 years in practice has taught me is that this evolution will never stop.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to start their own advisory practice?

Be optimistic. Focus on the opportunities, not the risk of failure (although one should not be blind to the challenges). Bring your strengths to the front of your mind and talk to the market about those strengths. Enjoy what you do.

How do you think the practice area will change in the next five years?

I think clients will demand more agile and confident advice. Gone are the days when a client will wait for a detailed analysis which might take weeks and result in an equivocal recommendation. Advice from lawyers and others is feeding directly into business decision making and it must be given within time frames that are relevant to the decision-making cycle for the business. All business decisions involve a weighing of risk and reward. Advice from a consultant is one of the inputs into this exercise and the advice must be given in a way that can be readily accommodated in that risk-reward mindset. Of course, the detailed hard work will still be necessary, and will continue to be gruelling in the most complex matters. However, this is now becoming a commodity item, and not where the adviser can add real value to the business.

Biographies:

Who's Who Legal Australia - Construction

Phillip Greenham has practised construction law for over 30 years. He was a partner at MinterEllison for more than 25 years. He headed the construction, engineering and infrastructure group in the Melbourne office for 13 years. He is a founding director and a past chair of the Society of Construction Law Australia. Phillip’s practice encompassed commercial drafting work, contract administration and dispute work in relation to a wide variety of construction engineering and procurement projects. 

Phillip now practises through JBM Advisory Pty Ltd and focuses on providing advisory and training services to the construction industry and other industries involved in complex procurement.

Phillip has specialised in the area of public sector procurement and assisting international construction and engineering companies navigate the Australian commercial and legal landscape.

The analysis of risk, whether through contractual documentation or business processes and behaviour, and the development of strategies to mitigate that risk is one of Phillip’s particular interests.

Phillip has a BSc and brings techniques from this discipline to his practice of the law. These include Monte Carlo-style risk assessment tools and a focus on a return-on-investment analysis of disputes.

Phillip is a board member of the Australian Construction Industry Forum, and a member of the International Academy of Construction Lawyers; the International Construction Lawyers Association; the Construction Lawyers Society of America; and the International Bar Association’s international construction projects committee.

Phillip is a senior fellow at Melbourne University and presents regularly on procurement methodology, contract administration and government contracting.

Phillip recently joined Arbitration Chambers (with chambers in Hong Kong and London).

WWL says: Phillip Greenham enjoys an excellent reputation among peers and with over 30 years’ experience, he boasts exceptional knowledge of the construction sector and PPP projects.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Australia which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Construction: Lawyers

Phillip Greenham has practised construction law for over 30 years. He was a partner at MinterEllison for more than 25 years. He headed the construction, engineering and infrastructure group in the Melbourne office for 13 years. He is a founding director and a past chair of the Society of Construction Law Australia.

Phillip’s practice encompassed commercial drafting work, contract administration and dispute work in relation to a wide variety of construction engineering and procurement projects. Phillip now practises through JBM Advisory Pty Ltd and focuses on providing advisory and training services to the construction industry and other industries involved in complex procurement. Phillip also practises as an independent arbitrator and is a member of Arbitration Chambers in Hong Kong and London.

Phillip has specialised in the area of public sector procurement and assisting international construction and engineering companies navigate the Australian commercial and legal landscape.

The analysis of risk, whether through contractual documentation or business processes and behaviour, and the development of strategies to mitigate that risk is one of Phillip’s particular interests.

Training of personnel and the provision of tools to assist in the administration and management of projects in an efficient way, consistent with the assumed obligations, responsibilities and powers is important and is one of Phillip’s key strengths.

Phillip also has a BSc. He brings techniques from this discipline to his practice of the law. These include Monte Carlo-style risk assessment tools and a focus on a return-on-investment analysis of disputes.

In the many large projects Phillip has managed, he has been able to apply project management and financial analysis techniques to assist clients in making the most appropriate decisions. These techniques were particularly helpful in the management of the then largest construction arbitration in Australia, the Murrin Murrin arbitration. This chess clock arbitration, conducted in an ICC framework, involved many firsts for Australia.

Phillip is a senior fellow in the University of Melbourne (Melbourne law master’s programme) and presents regularly on procurement methodology, contract administration and government contracting.

WWL says: Phillip Greenham ranks among Australia's elite construction practitioners. He receives praise from peers across Europe, the Middle East and Asia this year for his skills.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Construction which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Government Contracts

Phillip Greenham has practised construction law for over 30 years. He was a partner at MinterEllison for more than 25 years. He headed the construction, engineering and infrastructure group in the Melbourne office for 13 years. He is a founding director and a past chair of the Society of Construction Law Australia. Phillip’s practice encompassed commercial drafting work, contract administration and dispute work. 

Phillip now practises through JBM Advisory Pty Ltd and provides advisory and training services to the construction industry and other industries involved in complex procurement.

Phillip has specialised in the area of public sector procurement.

In a government context, Phillip’s clients included a significant portfolio of government departments and agencies. He worked inside the general counsel division of the Defence Materiel Organisation for six months. Through this work Phillip has gained a deep understanding of the environment within which the government undertakes construction-related procurement. The development of procurement methodologies and contractual terms that satisfy government policy requirements, and which will find favour with central government agencies while providing the government with appropriate protection and enjoying the support of the marketplace, is one of Phillip's particular specialities.

In the area of procurement methodologies, Phillip has advised on, drafted and negotiated contracts implementing a wide variety of procurement methodologies. including,traditional construct only and design and construct contracts, managing contractor contracts (both traditional and enhanced), alliancing contracts, early contractor involvement contracts, PPP contracts and many others.

In the area of standard form contracts (modified), Phillip has worked with many industry-standard contracts, modified those contracts and provided advice on their administration. These industry-standard contracts have included the suite published by Standards Australia, the GC21, the ABIC suite, the JCC suite (now redundant), the PC1, the FIDIC suite and the suited utilised by Commonwealth Department of Defence (including the Defence Materiel Organisation, prior to it being disbanded).

Phillip's many years of experience, both in the contract drafting environment and the dispute environment, has confirmed Phillip's view that, while the selection and drafting of the contract is important, it is not the most important step in maximising the prospects of project success. Intelligent and active contract administration, which reflects an understanding of the underlying contract, is far more important. An investment in contract administration will deliver greater returns than an investment in finessing the contract.

Phillip also has a BSc. He brings techniques from this discipline to his practice of the law. These include Monte Carlo-style risk assessment tools and a focus on a return-on-investment analysis of disputes.

Phillip has wide and deep industry connections. He is a board member of the Australian Construction Industry Forum, and a member of the International Academy of Construction Lawyers; the International Construction Lawyers Association; the Construction Lawyers Society of America; and the International Bar Association’s international construction projects committee.

Phillip is a senior fellow in the University of Melbourne (master’s programme in law) and presents regularly on procurement methodology, contract administration and government contracting.

Phillip recently joined Arbitration Chambers (with chambers in Hong Kong and London).

WWL says: Phillip Greenham is an impressive practitioner who stands out in the Australian market for his specialist insight across a range of procurement issues in the construction sector.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Government Contracts which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Australia - Government Contracts

Phillip Greenham has practised construction law for over 30 years. He was a partner at MinterEllison for more than 25 years. He headed the construction, engineering and infrastructure group in the Melbourne office for 13 years. He is a founding director and a past chair of the Society of Construction Law Australia. Phillip’s practice encompassed commercial drafting work, contract administration and dispute work. 

Phillip now practises through JBM Advisory Pty Ltd and provides advisory and training services to the construction industry and other industries involved in complex procurement.

Phillip has specialised in the area of public sector procurement. His clients included a significant portfolio of government departments and agencies, and he also spent six months working inside the general counsel division of the Defence Materiel Organisation. He has advised on, drafted and negotiated contracts implementing a wide variety of procurement methodologies including, traditional construct only and design and construct contracts, managing contractor contracts (both traditional and enhanced), alliancing contracts, early contractor involvement contracts, PPP contracts and many others. 

Phillip has a BSc and brings techniques from this discipline to his practice of the law. These include Monte Carlo-style risk assessment tools and a focus on a return-on-investment analysis of disputes.

Phillip is a board member of the Australian Construction Industry Forum, and a member of the International Academy of Construction Lawyers; the International Construction Lawyers Association; the Construction Lawyers Society of America; and the International Bar Association’s international construction projects committee.

Phillip is a senior fellow at Melbourne University and presents regularly on procurement methodology, contract administration and government contracting.

Phillip recently joined Arbitration Chambers (with chambers in Hong Kong and London).

WWL says: Phillip Greenham is an impressive individual who offers public and private clients a wealth of knowledge across a wide range of government contracts matters.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Australia which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Mediation

Phillip Greenham has practised construction law for over 30 years. He was a partner at MinterEllison for more than 25 years. He headed the construction, engineering and infrastructure group in the Melbourne office for 13 years. He is a founding director and a past chair of the Society of Construction Law Australia. Phillip’s practice encompassed commercial drafting work, contract administration and dispute work in relation to a wide variety of construction engineering and procurement projects.

Phillip’s dispute practice encompassed all forms of dispute avoidance, management and, resolution including court proceedings, arbitration, mediation, conciliation, court-appointed special referees and independent expert.

Phillip personally conducted the mediations on behalf of his clients and was regularly able to assist in the navigation of intractable disputes to a satisfactory agreed outcome.

Phillip’s experience in construction disputes extends over his 34 years of practice and has included Australian domestic arbitrations and mediations (acting as adviser in dozens of arbitrations in Australia relating to residential and commercial building developments) and oil and gas matters (acting as arbitrator, on a panel of three, in relation to a dispute over an LPG development in Western Australia). He has also represented Fluor Australia in relation to the Murrin Murrin arbitration; the Victorian government in relation to the long-running Seal Rocks arbitration; the Victorian Department of Health in relation to a number of disputes in connection with the construction and refurbishment of various Victorian hospitals through the litigation, mediation and expert determination process; the Victorian Department of Justice in relation to arbitration and court proceedings arising out of the construction of new police stations in Victoria; Krupp Udhe in relation to arbitral and court proceedings arising out of the construction of an Ammonium Nitrate plant; and Kilpatrick Green in relation to expert determination and court proceedings arising out of a large-scale industrial plant.

Phillip has a BSc and brings techniques from this discipline to his practice of the law. These include Monte Carlo-style risk assessment tools and a focus on a return-on-investment analysis of disputes.

Phillip has wide and deep industry connections. He is a board member of the Australian Construction Industry Forum, and a member of the International Academy of Construction Lawyers; the International Construction Lawyers Association; the Construction Lawyers Society of America; and the International Bar Association’s international construction projects committee.

Phillip is a senior fellow at Melbourne University, on the master’s programme in law, and presents regularly on procurement methodology, contract administration and government contracting.

Phillip recently joined Arbitration Chambers (with chambers in Hong Kong and London).

WWL says: Phillip Greenham is well regarded by respondents for his skill as a mediator in  construction disputes, and in particular his considerable knowledge of the Australian domestic market.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Commercial Mediation which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Australia - Mediation

Phillip Greenham has practised construction law for over 30 years. He was a partner at MinterEllison for more than 25 years. He headed the construction, engineering and infrastructure group in the Melbourne office for 13 years. He is a founding director and a past chair of the Society of Construction Law Australia. Phillip’s practice encompassed commercial drafting work, contract administration and dispute work in relation to a wide variety of construction engineering and procurement projects. 

Phillip’s dispute practice encompassed all forms of dispute avoidance, management and resolution including, court proceedings, arbitration, mediation, conciliation, court-appointed special referees and independent expert.

Phillip personally conducted the mediations on behalf of his clients and was regularly able to assist in the navigation of intractable disputes to a satisfactory agreed outcome.

Phillip’s experience in construction disputes includes acting as adviser in dozens of arbitrations in Australia relating to residential and commercial building developments and acting as arbitrator in relation to a dispute over an LPG development in Western Australia.

Phillip has a BSc and brings techniques from this discipline to his practice of the law. These include Monte Carlo-style risk assessment tools and a focus on a return-on-investment analysis of disputes.

Phillip is a board member of the Australian Construction Industry Forum, and a member of the International Academy of Construction Lawyers; the International Construction Lawyers Association; the Construction Lawyers Society of America; and the International Bar Association’s international construction projects committee.

Phillip is a senior fellow at Melbourne University and presents regularly on procurement methodology, contract administration and government contracting.

Phillip recently joined Arbitration Chambers (with chambers in Hong Kong and London).

WWL says: Phillip Greenham wins high praise from market sources who commend his vast experience handling complex disputes.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Australia which can be purchased from our Shop.

Follow us on LinkedIn

Practice Areas

Firms

Browse Firms

Search Firms

The Who's Who Legal 100

Awards

News & Features

Special Reports

Events

Shop

About Us

It is not possible to buy entry into any Who's Who Legal publication

Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

Copyright © 2019 Law Business Research Ltd. All rights reserved. | http://www.lbresearch.com

87 Lancaster Road, London, W11 1QQ, UK | Tel: +44 20 7908 1180 / Fax: +44 207 229 6910

http://www.whoswholegal.com | editorial@whoswholegal.com

Law Business Research Ltd

87 Lancaster Road, London
W11 1QQ, UK