Science honours, early career training, prizes, grants

Bulletins, Exclude from Home Page, Science stakeholder bulletins

In this bulletin:
Our Australia Day Honours highlights: scientists and science communicators; Kylie Walker takes the helm at ATSE and Misha Schubert steps into STA. More here. 

Grants and awards including:

  • National ‘Maker’ community grants
  • Search for sharks, rays and sawfish
  • Women in Leadership award
  • Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science
  • ARC announces a suite of linkage grants

Events including:

  • Sonya Pemberton speaking at science communicators conference (see below for registration discount offer)
  • Catalysing Gender Equity
  • AFR Future briefings

More about the short forums we offer for early-career researchers, and our other training courses coming up in MelbourneSydney,  PerthCanberraTownsville, and Adelaide

And take a look at our recent stories:

Australia Day Honours

My personal highlights include:

Robyn Williams (an honourary AO, it’s also his birthday this week) and three science communicators: Dr Gael Jennings AM (scientist, reporter, author);  Anne Westmore AM  (whose latest book reveals how Nancy Millis started her science career when ‘it wasn’t what young women did’); and Shane Huntington OAM (Einstein A Go Go)

Bruce Robinson AC: using genomics to fight thyroid and other endocrine cancers; chairing the NHMRC and the review of Medicare rebates; and he still has time to see patients!

Rachael Webster AO: researching black holes and the first stars.

Genevieve Bell: the human experience of IT, AI – listen to her Boyer lectures.

Anthony Thomas AC: the subatomic universe.

Maria Parappilly OAM: theoretical physicist and pioneering physics educator. 

More in my Twitter stream:

Campus Morning Mail has pulled together lists of people presently working in/affiliated with higher education and research:
AC and AOAM – A to KAM – L to YOAM – A to LOAM – M to W

And my list of honours mentioning science, research and other key words is at

Change in guard at Academy and STA

Kylie Walker starts her new role as CEO of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE) this month. The Academy “applies science, technology and engineering expertise to solve the big issues.” Kylie was previously CEO of Science & Technology Australia (STA).

And taking on the role of CEO at Science Technology Australia is Misha Schubert, former journalist and strategic communication advisor with Universities Australia. STA is “the peak body in science and technology – a respected and influential contributor to debate on public policy.”

Grants, awards, prizes and opportunities

Maker Project community grants

Community STEM Engagement grants 2020 offer $20,000 to $100,000 for up to two years to deliver STEM-related activities and events to Australians under 18.

The grants aim to foster creativity, inquiry-based learning, and to support the development of STEM skills in students and youth through hands-on learning in design, engineering, and programming.

Applications close 19 February 2020. More information.

Join a sharks, rays and sawfish expedition
Work with some of the most endangered species of sharks, rays and sawfish on the planet.

Sharks and Rays Australia (SARA) are looking for field assistants for research expeditions in remote regions of North Queensland, the Gulf of Carpentaria and Cape York. 

SARA runs around eight expeditions per year. Most expeditions leave from Cairns and last for 11 to 14 days. 

More information.

BioMelbourne Network’s Women in Leadership Award 2020 
Nominations close 11 February. More information.

Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science 
Nominations for 2020 will open 6 February and close 12 March. More information.

Science events

AFR Future Briefings: Harnessing AI
12 February in Sydney. More information.

Australian Science Communicators conference 

Plenaries include: 

  • Can we save our grandchildren? Inspiring change in an age of denial and despair. Speakers include David Karoly, Sonya Pemberton, Alvin Stone (Media & Comms Manager for the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes), Lee Constable and Cameron Muir.
  • Broadcasting for Impact with Stephen Oliver from the ABC.
  • Effective engagement with Policy Makers with Subho Banerjee from the Australia & New Zealand School of Government

16 to 19 February in Melbourne.

15% off full conference if you use the code ‘ScienceInPublic‘ at checkout. Book here.  

Catalysing Gender Equity conference 
20/21 February 2020 in Adelaide. More information.

Universities Australia 2020 conference 
Topic is Education Changing Lives. 26/27 February in Canberra. More information

ARC funding announcements

The Minister for Education Dan Tehan recently announced several new ARC grants.
Job creation is a notable outcome of 18 new projects totalling $7.5 million, including: 

  • Developing a new method of producing, storing, and exporting green hydrogen using Australian resources – Curtin University
  • Producing more durable and powerful energy storage devices by developing high voltage cathode coated with nano-ionic thin layers – UNSW
  • Developing technology to accurately assess the performance of aluminium cladding, glass facades and skylights under severe hailstorm events – University of Melbourne
  • Read the media release.

New equipment and facilities are central to 47 projects comprising $30.7 million, including:

  • a “whopping” Volta graphical processing unit cluster that will transform computer-intensive artificial intelligence research in Australia – Sydney University
  • a facility to engineer quantum-grade diamond for precision sensing, secure communications and desktop quantum computing applications – University of Melbourne
  • an Antarctic-based set of seismic instruments and a mobile facility to measure and predict changes in ice sheets and load – University of Tasmania.
  • Read the media release.

And the national interest is a key component of 20 projects awarded a share of $9.5 million in Linkage Project funding, including:

  • an early warning system for bushfires, using a new model to reliably forecast the moisture content of live forest fuels – Western Sydney University
  • a means to establish a geographical indication of wine, as used in trade agreements and legal disputes – Monash University
  • an online tool to identify and share best practice for children in a digital society – Australian Catholic University

Training, forums, workshops on getting science into the media

Introduce your early-career researchers to the media, build the profile of your up and coming researchers or upskill your key experts on talking to the media.

Short forums

For early-career researchers, book a forum where we bring your audience to you and moderate a 90-minute Q&A with leaders in business, government, the media and key audiences from farmers to patients.

Or learn what makes a good pitch, write one, present it and get feedback in a dedicated session.

Topics include:

  • Meet the press
  • Meet your audience: Talking science with business/government
  • Make your pitch
  • Build your personal profile.

The forums suit 10 to 200 participants and cost $2,000 including travel to capital cities.

Full-day workshops

If you have lead researchers or up and coming stars who need more training, we run full-day media and communication training workshops around the country.

Your researchers will:

  • Meet journalists from television, radio and newspaper.
  • Build their confidence by doing practice interviews.
  • Work one-on-one with two science communication professionals on their key points, planning, how to build their profile and how to minimise the risk of it going wrong.

Workshops coming up in:

Cost is $800+GST per person including catering.

Research communication, media and science writing

We are passionate about helping scientists get their work into the public space. Whether it is reaching decision-makers, potential commercial partners, farmers, patients or mums and dads at home; we can help you explain your science in a way that is accurate and has impact.

If you’ve got a paper coming up, a collaboration to announce, a conference you’re bringing to town, we can help you tell your story to the world.

Contact us to find out more about our services to train, mentor, plan and deliver media and communication strategies for science, scientists and science organisations. We offer:
Communication plans, mentoring and training
We can review your stakeholders, messages and tools and help you and your communication team refine your plans. We offer this service for individual announcements or for a whole program or institute.
Media releases, launches, and campaigns
We can help you develop an outreach program, from a simple media release through to a launch, a summit, a conference, or a film.
Publications and copy-writing
From a tweet to a newsletter, from a brochure to a Nature supplement—we can write compelling and accurate, science-driven copy that captures the essence of your story and purpose.