Annual report 2013-2014

Highlights

Introduction

The Academy's 2013–2014 annual report is, for the first time, presented in the context of the objectives and strategies of the Academy’s strategic plan, providing a summary of the bigger picture. The new format better represents the relevance and effectiveness of the work of the Academy. Following are some hghlights from the annual report.

Influencing outcomes for science

  • Eight formal submissions and expert reports were provided to government reviews and inquiries.
  • Support for science was strongly advocated in the lead up to the 2013 federal election.
  • The Academy became a nationally trending topic on Twitter during the President’s televised address at the National Press Club, and extensive media coverage was gained.
  • The Research Alliance, a grouping of lead organisations representing hundreds of thousands of researchers across Australian business and industry, universities and medical research institutes, was established with support from the Academy.

Science education

  • 'Primary Connections: Linking science with literacy' completed the full suite of 31 units required to implement the national science curriculum in primary schools.
  • 70 per cent of all Australian primary schools have at least one Primary Connections curriculum unit.
  • Nearly 1,000 teachers from more than 500 schools attended 30 Primary Connections teacher training workshops.
  • Stage 2 of 'Science by Doing' was launched and funding was secured to complete all the units required for junior secondary school science.
  • 8,946 teachers and students registered to access the Science by Doing website during its first months of operation.
  • A chemistry curriculum unit for Indonesian high school students was produced as part of an Australian–Indonesian science education project.

International

  • Bilateral exchange programs and workshops to identify opportunities for joint research activities were administered.
  • The 10th annual China–Australia symposium on astronomy and astrophysics was held in Nanjing. 
  • Australia’s science capabilities were promoted internationally, including hosting briefings and visits from other countries, facilitating visits by researchers to other countries, and participating in science diplomacy work by the Australian Government.

Communicating the work of the academy

  • The website was updated daily with news of activities and the achievements of Fellows.
  • News was disseminated daily through Facebook and Twitter.
  • A science Q&A app for mobile devices was developed.
  • Talks and events were broadcast through YouTube.
  • Ideas and achievements featured regularly in the news media.

The fellowship

  • 21 new Fellows were elected to the Academy, bringing the total Fellowship to 481 leading researchers.
  • Processes for election and honorific awards were improved.
  • Recommendations arising from the review of the National Committees for Science were implemented, resulting in a committee structure that will better reflect and respond to the needs of science in Australia. 

Early- and mid-career researchers

  • The Australian Early- and Mid-Career Researchers Forum was supported to provide policy submissions to agencies, hold professional development activities and advise the Academy on career issues for young researchers.

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© 2017 Australian Academy of Science

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