Log in

News from 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 

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software