Client Stories

Western Sydney AirportOpening the world's largest gateway to Australia

Key insights

The envisaging and construction of an airport of the future required the Western Sydney International Airport (WSA) Executive to ‘live’ in 2027 and redefine the Australian airport experience.

To give the team the foresight required in the most vivid way possible, we created , a custom-curated, highly immersive virtual tour of the future, today.

Through us, WSA experienced breakthrough technologies around the world, such as flying cars and ‘visiting’ class-leading airports in San Francisco, San José and Tel Aviv.

For Maximus, this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be part of one of Australia’s largest nation-building projects.

Western Sydney International Airport is developing a new city strategy to drive economic growth, jobs and opportunities for the region, state and nation. The success of this landmark project will largely be determined by the foresight of the project’s leaders. Our job – inspire and enrich strategic foresight to help WSA create something truly remarkable.

The opportunity to be involved in one of the most significant nation-building projects in decades was not one we could miss. The legacy is as massive as the project is complex

Airports have generally been planned and built in a similar way for the last 50 years.

The challenge for the WSA team was to acquire the perspective and understanding to make better, braver decisions about the future. This could not happen through lived experience simply because it takes too long to gain that experience. The knowledge must be learned vicariously, and Maximus has a world-class method to enable that to happen.

Curated specifically for WSA by Maximus, The Expedition is a fully customised virtual voyage, a highly immersive, multi-day experience. The Expedition compresses the wisdom of years into days and a world of knowledge into a single room.

We guided the WSA team on an ‘international journey’ that gradually revealed what the future would hold for an airport. Together we visited Silicon Valley, Israel, Asia, Europe and other parts of Australia, meeting thought leaders whose vision and energy were inspiring and whose work is actively changing the future. WSA explored the future of tech, of travel, of tourism, of finance, work and money. We examined adjacent industries as well as the latest developments in airports, freight and transit. We talked to global experts in the world of flying cars, of autonomous drones, of space travel. We investigated sustainability and zero carbon in depth. And we visited Indigenous experts to learn how to integrate the new precinct with a sensitivity that celebrated the land and culture on which it will stand.

One of the reasons The Expedition is such a powerful leadership development tool is the calibre of the experts and companies involved. WSA gained access to global leaders in their fields that would not be possible were they not part of the Maximus network. We are careful to frame The Expedition with a ‘founder’s mindset’, placing great importance on passion, a sense of ownership and customer experience.

With the airport and its surrounding business parks, transport links and associated infrastructure not due for completion until 2026, we continue to inspire the WSA team as they navigate their strategic choices.


“It’s important to look at companies around the world we consider best in class and examine what they’re doing to help us determine the experience and innovation we want to bring to Western Sydney Airport.”

– Simon Hickey, Chief Executive Officer

“It opened our eyes… we spoke to some really great minds, thinkers and people working at the cutting edge of technology”

– Tom McCormack, Chief Technology Officer

“The Expedition succeeded in lifting our gaze, collectively, as a leadership team. There’s an incredible challenge ahead of us to ensure Western Sydney International delivers a transformative customer experience and a meaningful social legacy. Maximus’ innovative approach helped connect the WSA Executive team to next-level thinking and diversity of possibilities.”

– Scott MacKillop, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer



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