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  • 23 Sep 2022 3:29 PM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)

    Australia’s National Science and Technology Council met last week for the first time with Science Minister Ed Husic in the chair. The Council brings together outstanding scientific leaders and experts - including former Science & Technology Australia President Associate Professor Jeremy Brownlie - to give scientific advice on government priorities.

    The Minister’s keynote to the AIIA Tech & Sustainability Conference later that day emphasised the importance of technology to help Australia to reach its net zero emissions goal. It also telegraphed vast opportunities for our country by tapping into Australia’s world-class scientists and technologists.

    A new National Quantum Advisory Committee will draw together eminent science and business leaders to guide Australia’s development of these transformative technologies. Chaired by Australia’s Chief Scientist Dr Cathy Foley, its 15 members include Defence Chief Scientist Professor Tanya Monro and STA’s Treasurer and FAR committee chair Mark Stickells in his role as Executive Director of the Pawsey Supercomputing Research Centre.

    Sleeptite CEO Cameron Van Den Dungen, STA Policy Chair Professor Sharath Sriram and STA member Women in STEMM co-chair Professor Madhu Bhaskaran also hosted a Ministerial visit to showcase how their world-first flexible lightweight sensors were created - an Australian innovation to help revolutionise patient safety and well-being in aged care. Shadow Science Minister Paul Fletcher has also been out and about visiting leading science teams and facilities across the country and highlighting their inspiring work.

    This week, Australia’s annual STEM Equity Monitor was published. It confirms crucial progress is being made by the array of programs and initiatives to boost the participation of women in STEM. But there is still a long way to go - especially in enabling women into senior leadership in STEM. Just 23 percent of senior managers and only 8 percent of CEOs in STEM-qualified industries are women. Here's our media release.  

    STA STEM Ambassador Meg Panozzo was profiled in an Australian Financial Review story on this topic. Meg is an engineer working as an Infrastructure Advisory Consultant at RPS and she’s spent her career driving significant cultural change for women in engineering.

    Meanwhile, the Australian National Fabrication Facility (ANFF) is powerfully transforming our country’s manufacturing future. We are delighted to welcome them this week as our newest STA member. ANFF plays a crucial role in the Australian research community. It delivers world class expertise and access to micro and nanofabrication equipment to the country’s science sector. We are thrilled to add their voice to the 105 member organisations we represent. Together we are a powerful voice for the sector.

    It was terrific to see Professor Lesley Hughes, Sam Mostyn and Dr Virginia Marshall appointed to the board of the Climate Change Authority last week. They are three hugely experienced and highly influential experts. Wiradjuri-Nyemba woman Dr Marshall - a legal scholar with deep expertise in water - will bring a powerful First Nations perspective to the board’s work.

    Education Minister Jason Clare has opened applications for the 2022-23 round of the STEM mentoring program for Year 9 and 10 girls, Curious Minds. This inspiring program is run by STA member Australian Science Innovations. Applications are open until 30 September.  

    What a moving obituary for trailblazing Australian global speech scientist Professor Anne Cutler from STA members at the MARCS Institute for Brain, Behaviour and Development at Western Sydney University. She championed the cause of women in academia, advocating for quotas to address gender imbalance and inspiring new generations of female researchers.

    Finally, STA has launched a newsletter on LinkedIn, sharing science and technology policy and advocacy news with an even wider community of opinion shapers. It will be published every second Monday following our Member Update. Please subscribe and share if you know others who would find this resource valuable.

    Until next time, 

    Misha Schubert 
    CEO, Science & Technology Australia 


  • 9 Sep 2022 6:20 PM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)



    As the world mourns the death of Queen Elizabeth II, STA honours her vast commitment to public service, and her lifelong passion for the transformative power of science and technology. Last year, the Queen joined school students in a video chat to mark British Science Week, sharing insights on meeting the first astronaut to head into space, Yuri Gugarin.  

    How superb that Science & Technology Australia President Professor Mark Hutchinson is one of three eminent leaders appointed by Education Minister Jason Clare to review the Australian Research Council’s role and functions.  

    His appointment ensures an active researcher – and one with an impressive record across his career in both discovery and translational research – is among those shaping the future of the granting agency at a pivotal moment in its history.

    The Minister also issued a new Statement of Expectations to the ARC - which says the National Interest Test should be clearer, simpler and more easily understood for researchers.

    The Jobs and Skills Summit last week brought together many national decision-makers. The key outcomes are here. They included launching a review to drive stronger gains on diversity in the sector and its workforce.

    STA welcomed the review. We are pleased it will look at structural and cultural barriers to the participation of women and other under-represented groups – and help identify the most effective programs at driving diversity gains in the sector so they can be scaled up to propel faster progress.

    Yesterday the major business group CEDA released its report ‘Harnessing science x technology to drive Australian innovation and growth’. Many of STA’s ideas and proposals on how to support science commercialisation are reflected in the report – and several STA members participated in the roundtables that shaped it.

    And in his speech to the CEDA conference, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said the Government would support the work of the science community by:

    1. Signalling a respect for science, evidence and research.
    2. Valuing foundational work - as well as commercial applications.
    3. Creating a sense of certainty and support for long-term projects, so researchers and scientists can do their work without looking over their shoulder, or spending their time re-applying for funding.”

    In an historic moment for the country, yesterday the Government’s Climate Change Bill has now passed the Senate. STA’s submission and policy suggestions were quoted in the committee’s report. The amended bill will now return to the House of Representatives.
     
    Also over the past fortnight, STA ran a series of networking events with our inspiring Superstars of STEM. The gatherings followed their final in-person media training, where Superstars were put through their paces in newsrooms to hone their broadcast interview skills. A huge thank you to the many journalists who contributed their time, expertise and skill.

    We will soon send a ‘save the date’ for next year’s Science meets Parliament. The STA team is putting together a stellar program of speakers to make it our best yet. In the meantime, sponsorship opportunities are open if your organisation wants to associate itself with this world-leading event.

    Finally, a huge congratulations to the Co-Chair of STA’s EDI Committee Professor Sumeet Walia for his Emerging Leader Eureka award, and to our Superstar of STEM Dr Kirsten Ellis for her STEM Inclusion Eureka Award. It’s great to see this richly-deserved recognition.

    Until next time, 

    Misha Schubert 
    CEO, Science & Technology Australia 


  • 7 Sep 2022 4:16 PM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)

    STA WELCOMES REVIEW TO DRIVE SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY SECTOR DIVERSITY

    TUESDAY 6 SEPTEMBER 2022

    Australia’s leading voice for scientists and technologists welcomes the Australian Government’s announcement of a review to drive stronger gains on diversity in the sector and its workforce. 

    Science & Technology Australia is a champion for equity, diversity and inclusion in the science, technology, engineering and maths sector.

    Science & Technology Australia CEO Misha Schubert welcomed Science Minister Ed Husic’s announcement of a review which “would help Australia to reach further into the full breadth of our diverse talent pool in this country”.

    The review will look at structural and cultural barriers to the participation of women and other under-represented groups to recommend change – and help identify the most effective programs at driving diversity gains in the sector so they can be scaled up to propel faster progress.

    “To truly prosper, Australia’s economy urgently needs to attract and retain more women, First Nations people, regional Australians, culturally and linguistically diverse people, people with a disability and Australians from low socio-economic backgrounds into science and technology careers,” Ms Schubert said.

    “To make major strides to address chronic gender inequity in sectors where that under-representation is most acute, you need consistent strong leadership, long-term investments at scale, strong buy-in, and a powerful resolve to drive cultural change.”

    “STA has a strong commitment to publish detailed evaluations on our programs to share insights on what is working – and help speed broader equity gains in the science and technology sector for women and the breadth of Australia’s diverse communities.” 

    “We’re pleased the review will also look at cultural and structural barriers that limit participation and retention of women and other under-represented groups in STEM professions.”

    “To create the “future powered by science” envisaged by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, we need to be able to draw on Australia’s full talent pool. Clear action to eliminate barriers to participation for women and under-represented groups are key to that goal.”

    STA runs the acclaimed Superstars of STEM program – backed by Australian Government – which builds the profile and confidence of diverse women role models to appear regularly as prominent science and technology experts in the media and speak in schools, inspiring our next generations of diverse young Australians into STEM.

    The program has started to stratospherically elevate the profiles of stellar women in science. In the year to June 2021 alone, our Superstars of STEM did 4000 media appearances, reached an audience of 83 million people, and inspired 21,000 students in school visits.

    About Science & Technology Australia
    Science & Technology Australia is the nation’s peak body representing more than 90,000 scientists and technologists. We’re the leading policy voice on science and technology. Our  flagship programs include Science meets Parliament, Superstars of STEM, and STA STEM Ambassadors
     

    Media contact: Martyn Pearce, STA: 0432 606 828


  • 29 Aug 2022 5:35 PM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)


    Australia faces a ‘Sliding Doors’ moment when we can choose to supercharge our science and technology strengths and generate a $52 billion windfall for our economy - or consign ourselves to a future with our fate in the hands of others.

    Heading into the Jobs and Skills Summit, new analysis by Science & Technology Australia shows how even a modest investment to train Australia’s first generation of bench-to-boardroom scientists could powerfully supercharge our national economic growth.

    Science & Technology Australia wants to recruit and train Australia’s first generation of bench-to-boardroom scientists with the skills, networks and commercial knowledge to bridge the ‘valley of death’ in science commercialisation.

    Science & Technology Australia President Professor Mark Hutchinson is one of Australia’s first generation of scientist-entrepreneurs. Under his leadership, the ARC Centre of Excellence in Nanoscale BioPhotonics has created 16 startups with a combined market capitalisation and market value of nearly $520 million.

    “Imagine the potential of an Australian economy powered by up to 2000 more entrepreneurial bench-to-boardroom scientists,” said Science & Technology Australia CEO Misha Schubert.

    “If just five per cent  - a very conservative figure - of a new generation of bench-to-boardroom scientists achieve the level of success we’ve seen from some of our nation’s brightest commercialisation stars, it would generate a $52 billion return for the Australian economy.”

    “That conservative level of success would not just create a wealth of new jobs for Australians, it would kickstart whole new industries and create an economy powered by science.”

    Science & Technology Australia warns the nation’s economic competitors are rapidly scaling up their investments in science, technology, research and development. 

    If Australia keeps pace, the country can seize huge opportunities for the economy including new jobs, national income, intellectual property and sovereign capability.

    “Right now, the world is in a fierce science and technology race to rapidly advance societies and economies,” Ms Schubert said.

    “The stakes are high. If Australia doesn’t keep pace, we face the grave risk that the country will end up as a consumer, not a creator - eroding our sovereign capability and deepening our reliance on other countries.”

    “But with bold strategic investments now, Australia can keep ourselves in play.” 

    “A few decisive steps now will get us on the train to a destination of an economy and society powered by science. Miss that opportunity, and we will be left stranded on the platform.”

    This month the US passed the CHIPS and Science Act 2022 - a $52 billion boost for science and semiconductor research and development dubbed a “once-in-a-generation investment in America itself” by President Joe Biden.

    The bold investment plan includes a $10 billion outlay in regional science and technology hubs and manufacturing, and vast new investment in STEM workforce development and STEM education from pre-school to university - with a focus on diverse communities.

    “Australia should be every bit as ambitious for our science and technology ambitions.”

    At the launch of National Science Week this month, Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles said “the most important piece of micro-economic reform which faces the nation today is infusing our economy with science and technology”. 

    Science & Technology Australia participated in the science and commercialisation roundtable this  month leading into the Jobs and Skills summit.

    The bench-to-boardroom plan is one of five policy fixes proposed by Science & Technology Australia to advance the urgent imperative of creating the “future powered by science” outlined by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in his Science Vision Statement

    • Setting a bold new ambition for Australia to become a global STEM superpower; 
    • Training Australia’s first generation of ‘bench-to-boardroom’ scientists;
    • Fixing chronic job insecurity in science to end the brain drain; 
    • Confirming the Budget funding for research commercialisation investments; and 
    • An urgent boost for breakthroughs in Australia’s discovery research grant budgets.


    About Science & Technology Australia
    Science & Technology Australia is the nation’s peak body representing more than 90,000 scientists and technologists. We’re the leading policy voice on science and technology. Our  flagship programs include Science meets Parliament, Superstars of STEM, and STA STEM Ambassadors.  


    Media contact: Martyn Pearce, STA: 0432 606 828


  • 25 Aug 2022 5:42 PM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)

    The Statistical Society of Australia is excited to announce a new partnership with KBI to provide tailored and discounted insurance to our members.

    SSA members will get special access to tailored insurance products from KBI, who focus on providing an easy, streamlined, and customised process for quoting, purchasing and renewing your insurance policies.

    Benefits to members:

    • Discounted premiums 
    • Market leading insurance products with tailored coverages for statisticians.
    • Expert advice and same day response time from a local broker who is designated to SSA members, as well as a streamlined process every step of the way.
    • Easy to understand what is and isn’t covered
    • Free contract reviews to ensure your insurance policies comply with your contracts
    • In-house claims team and access to lawyers to help manage any disputes and claims
    • Education and training opportunities on insurance and risk for the statistical industry
    • Free “Risk Guide” for members to help you manage your key risks

    KBI is a locally owned independent insurance broker with offices across Australia. As SSA’s insurance partner, KBI will help us build and continually improve a key benefit of our association to add value for our members.

    To get a quote or learn more about this offering, please click here. You need to be logged into your SSA membership account to be able to see the page.

    Marie-Louise Rankin
    SSA Executive Officer


  • 24 Aug 2022 9:06 AM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)

    SSA recently introduced a new membership category: the Early Career Membership. This discounted level of membership is available to members transitioning or having transitioned from full-time university studies to employment within the last three years. The fee is half the cost of full membership, with all the benefits of full membership. If you are not yet a member, sign up here!

    To upgrade a current student membership to that of Early Career Membership, a member just needs to tick the appropriate box when they renew their membership next time, or send me a quick email and I’ll do it for them.

    Members holding Transitional Membership were converted to Early Career members earlier this week. SSA members who recently upgraded from transitional membership to full membership may be entitled to one or two more years of Early Career membership. If this is you, please contact me.

    Marie-Louise Rankin
    Executive Officer


  • 18 Aug 2022 3:06 PM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)

    During his tenure as SSA President, Prof Adrian Barnett established the President’s Award for Leadership in Statistics. The intention of the award is to recognise an individual or team who has made an outstanding contribution to leadership in statistics, and each President may award one of these during their tenure.

    Over the last two years, COVID-19 has meant that statisticians all around Australia, and internationally, have stepped up to provide public commentary on statistical issues, and provide advice to governments. These contributions are worthy and appreciated.

    However, the group of individuals who I wish to recognise with my President’s award made contributions over the last two years that were less public. Over the last two years, when so many of us felt isolated, were confined to our homes, and were separated from our families and friends, this group of individuals worked extremely hard to maintain a sense of community among statisticians. So, in recognition of their leadership of the statistical community around Australia over the last two years, I wish to nominate all Branch Councils of the SSA from March 2020 to March 2022 for my President’s Award for Leadership in Statistics.

    When the pandemic was declared in March 2020 and in-person gatherings banned, the SSA Branch Councils worked hard to continue serving their members. By pivoting to online events, a sense of community within our profession was not only maintained, but strengthened: members now had access not only to their local Branch’s events, but to SSA events happening all across Australia. I myself benefited greatly from this: tuning into inspiring and interesting presentations from across Australia helped me to get through the long, locked-down Melbourne winters. With restrictions now a thing of the past, I am pleased to see that Branches are continuing to offer virtual attendance options for some events, making SSA events accessible to a greater proportion of our members than ever before.

    So: in recognition of their leadership of the statistical community across Australia during the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, I am awarding the SSA Branch Councils from March 2020 to March 2022 my President’s Award for Leadership in Statistics, with the names of all awardees listed below. Each of these people can claim receipt of the “SSA President’s Award for Leadership in Statistics, awarded to the 2020-2022 Branch Councils”.

    Jessica Kasza, August 2022

    New South Wales

    Victoria

    Thomas Fung

    Emi Tanaka

    Clara Grazian

    Damjan Vukcevic

    Runze Alex Xu

    Ben Harrap

    Boris Beranger

    Elizabeth Korevaar

    Matt Wand

    Cameron Patrick

    Benoit Liquet-Weiland

    Rheanna Mainzer

    Houying Zhu

    Lidija Turkovic

    Firouzeh Noghrehchi

    Daniel Fryer

    Gordana Popovic

    Lauren Kennedy

    Luca Maestrini

    Hien Nguyen

    Joanna Wang

    Patrick Robotham

    Nicole de la Mata

    Kevin Wang

    Yidi Yan

    Kohleth Chia

    Jake Olivier

    South Australia

    Munir Hiabu

    Murthy Mittinty 

    Ardalan Mirzaei

    Barbara Toson

    Mark Donoghoe

    Aarti Gulyani

    Matias Quiroz

    Paul Sutcliffe

    Western Australia

    Wendy Li

    Alun Pope

    Shahid Ullah

    Brenton Clarke

    Helena Oakey

    Shih Ching Fu                       

    Lan Kelly

    Torben Kimhofer              

    Kylie Lange 

    Deneegan Subramanian

    Canberra

    Fadzai Chikwava                 

    Francis Hui

    John Henstridge

    Warren Muller

    Rick Tankard

    Nick Husek

    Alethea Rea

    Pauline O'Shaughnessy

    Rowena Burch

    Tom Lawrence

    Berwin Turlach

    Nelson Chua

    Queensland

    Xuan Liang

    Dimitrios Vagenas

    Anton Westveld

    Adrian Barnett

    Linh Nghiem

    Lee Jones

    Michael Martin

    Xing Lee

    Gwenda Thompson

    Megan Steele

    Belinda Baker

    Rachel King

    Peter Caley

    Natalie Scott

    Brenda Vo

    Farzana Jahan

     

    Miranda Mortlock

     

    Peter Baker

     



  • 18 Aug 2022 12:02 PM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)

    Elizabeth Armstrong and Kris Rogers, ANZHFR and UNSW School of Public Health

    E Armstrong: ANZ Hip Fracture Registry: data visualisations for different audiences 
    K Rogers: Strategies for dealing with missing data in clinical trials

    The July 2022 meeting featured two presentations delivered via Zoom by Elizabeth Armstrong (former Manager of the Australia and New Zealand Hip Fracture Registry) and Dr Kris Rogers (Senior Biostatistician at The George Institute for Global Health).

    Elizabeth presented visualizations from the ANZHFR 2021 Annual Report and Kris’ presentation discussed advantages and disadvantages of various methods to obtain parameter estimates in the presence of missing data and methodologies for causal inference from non-trial data.  

    ANZHFR is a registry that collects data on the care of older people in Australia and New Zealand, admitted to hospital with a fracture of the proximal femur. 

    In 2021, 86 hospitals who contributed to the patient level report (64 in Australia and 22 in New Zealand) and the 117 hospitals who contributed to the facility level results.

    Elizabeth presented a number of visualizationsfor key KPIs in the surgical care of patients who received hip replacement. The outlier report for the 16 quality indicators in the clinical care standard is an effective graphic display for the measured in standard deviations from the average performance of all hospitals. Performance outliers are flagged when the care metric lies 2 to 3 standard deviations from the overall hospital average performance.

    For the determination of KPI attainment across various aspects of care, hospitals must have contributed at least 10 patient records during the relevant calendar year to be included in the patient level report. 

    Following on Elizabeth’s presentation, Kris discussed a range of methodologies for dealing with missing data, drawing comparisons between simpler approaches (Last Observation Carried Forward, mean imputation, multiple imputation) and other more advanced methods that use full information maximum likelihood, weighted GEEs (General Estimating Equations), Bayesian methods and causal inference methods. 

    Missing data in randomised studies is often an underappreciated issue. The goal of a randomised experiment is to draw a causal inference on the effect of a treatment on an outcome. In the context of randomised controlled trials (RCT), random assignment of treatment ensures that the average effect difference between the two groups can only be attributable to treatment. However, in the presence of missing data, the assumption of ignorability (e.g., the method of the data collection does not depend on the missing data), is very rarely met. Technically, the presence of missingness negates the benefits of randomisation, leaving the researcher with an observational dataset. 

    An interesting final point Kris raised, and which is often overlooked, is that data in observational studies needs to contain common support for the exposure in order to correctly apply causal inference methods for observational data. This can be done using propensity score models and visualising the areas of overlap of the propensity score in the exposure groups.

    By Gabriella Lincoln

  • 18 Aug 2022 11:11 AM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)

    WA Branch of the SSA

    The August 2022 meeting of the WA Branch of the SSA was celebrated jointly with members of the International Biometric Society (IBS) led by Mario D’Antuono a former president of the Australasian Region of the IBS. This time the location of the talk was Curtin University. The speaker for the evening was Dr Kefei Chen from Statistics for the Australian Grains Industry (SAGI) West, Curtin University. Kefei spoke on “Semiparametric and nonparametric models for crop longitudinal study”. The outline of the talk began with fitting of sigmoidal curves using full parametric models a la Logistic, Log-Logistic, Gompertz & Weibull functions; semiparametric models using Generalized Additive Model (GAM) & Shape Constrained Additive Model (SCAM); Nonparametric models using Bayesian Additive Gaussian Process Model (AGPM). This was followed by symmetric or skewed Bell-shaped/ biphasic curves fitted via full parametric models using Gaussian and Log-Gaussian functions; semiparametric models using GAM & SCAM, and nonparametric models using AGPM. The final discussion covered spatio-temporal modelling for yield prediction in the WA Grainbelt using semiparametric GAM models.

    Mario D’Antuono, Alun Pope (president of WA Branch) and Kefei ChenAfter relating formulae for parametric models he discussed motivation for full parametric regression and noted the use of R packages drc (Ritz et al., 2015) & medrc (Gerhard & Ritz, 2018). Semi-parametric regression builds on parametric regression by allowing for more flexible relationship between the predictor variables and the response variables. After a brief introduction, GAM models were fitted using the package mgcv (Wood, 2017), and SCAM models were fitted with R package scam (Pya, 2021). Finally, Bayesian Additive Gaussian Process Modelling (AGPM) was here related and fitted using R package lgpr (Timonen et al., 2021).

    This was followed by exploratory data analysis with various plots and summary tables of fitted models illustrating comparisons. The preliminary results suggested that both semiparametric and nonparametric methods can be of great value in many applications in fields including biological and agricultural sciences and can have the advantage of flexibility with less assumptions.  This is particularly so for longitudinal studies with temporal uncertainty, and unknown complex relationships

    A Spatial-temporal model using GAM was then discussed where yield prediction is a key to many discussions for crop production. Wheat yield prediction in Western Australia is usually done by one of two methods, French and Schultz (F&S) (French & Schultz, 1984) and crop simulation modelling (APSIM) (McCown et al., 1996). APSIM is difficult to calibrate because of the number of parameters. The F&S approach is suggested to be too simple as it does not account for waterlogging.

    Kefei and colleagues aimed to produce a simple and parsimonious but reasonably accurate model combining advantages of the F&S approach and the more complex crop simulation model, that can be used by farmers to predict wheat yield on a paddock level. Again, more plots were shown illustrating the advantages of the methodology.

    The talk drew some interesting discussion, which was appreciated by all, and talks continued afterwards at a local tavern. All in all, it was a successful meeting.

    Brenton R Clarke

    Some references:

    *Pya, N. (2021). scam: Shape Constrained Additive Models. R package version 1.2-12. URL: https://CRAN.Rproject.org/package=scam.

    *Wood, S. N. (2017). Generalized additive models: an introduction with R. CRC press.

    *Timonen, J., H. Mannerstrom, A. Vehtari, et al. (2021). “lgpr: an interpretable non-parametric method for inferring covariate effects from longitudinal data”. In: Bioinformatics 37.13, pp. 1860–1867.

    *Ritz, C., F. Baty, J. C. Streibig, et al. (2015). “Dose-response analysis using R”. In: PloS one 10.12, p. e0146021.

    *Gerhard, D. and C. Ritz (2018). medrc: Mixed effect dose-response curves. R package version 1.1-0.

    *French, R. J. and J. E. Schultz (1984). “Water use efficiency of wheat in a Mediterranean-type environment. I. The relation between yield, water use and climate”. In: Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 35.6, pp. 743–764.

    *McCown, R. L., G. L. Hammer, J. N. G. Hargreaves, et al. (1996). “APSIM: a novel software system for model development, model testing and simulation in agricultural systems research”. In: Agricultural systems 50.3,pp. 255–271.

  • 16 Aug 2022 1:18 PM | Marie-Louise Rankin (Administrator)

    PASS THE CLIMATE LEGISLATION & ‘NAME AND FAME’ TRANSITION LEADERS

    Australia’s climate change legislation should be passed with an added commitment to ‘name and fame’ sectors leading the charge to reduce emissions, the peak body for Australia’s 90,000 scientists and technologists has urged.

    In its submission to the Senate Inquiry on the Climate Change Bill, Science & Technology Australia strongly supports the passage of the legislation. 

    The peak body proposes the legislation be accompanied by a funding boost for climate science research to guide Australia’s emissions transition, climate adaptation and resilience building measures.

    It also wants the annual climate change statement to Parliament to include updates on emissions reduction progress by each industry sector – and an update on key climate science developments since the last statement.

    “Australia’s science and technology sector strongly urges Parliament to pass this climate legislation,” said Science & Technology CEO Misha Schubert.

    “We welcome the commitment that the 43 per cent target by 2030 is a ‘floor’, not a ‘ceiling’, for emissions reductions – and we strongly support ambitions to bolster this target in coming years.”

    “Climate change is an urgent threat. Australia must act concertedly in these crucial next few years to make our transition as smooth and successful as possible,” she said.

    “A deeper investment in Australia’s outstanding climate scientists will ensure we continue to have the expertise we need to safeguard our economy, safety and prosperity.”

    Under the proposed legislation, the Minister will deliver an annual climate change statement to Parliament on progress towards the target. 

    This statement should include an update sector-by-sector to identify those making significant progress – and speed the success of transition, Ms Schubert said.

    “‘Naming and faming’ sectors making swift strides towards the target will highlight examples of industry leaders and spur momentum in Australia’s transition.”

    “It will also send an important message that we are all working together to achieve a common goal, and making genuine progress.”

    “The annual climate statement to Parliament should include an update on significant developments in climate science over the previous year, so Parliamentarians and the public can be assured policy decisions are informed by the latest science.”

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