With support of the Australian Government, the Academy of Science is developing a 10-year strategic plan to improve engagement, involvement and retention of women in STEM. The decadal plan will examine barriers and enablers from early schooling through to senior career levels in academia and industry STEM sectors, and will include a detailed implementation plan to advance the recommendations.
The Academy is working closely with the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering on this project, and has convened an Expert Working Group comprising representatives from industry, academia, government and school education to provide advice and guidance.
National consultation on the plan commenced in September, and meetings have been well attended by STEM sector representatives from around Australia. Based on the feedback from consultations and an online discussion paper, an exposure draft is scheduled for November. The plan will be finalised and launched at Australia’s Parliament House in March next year, following which the two Academies will commence an implementation process, supported by the Australian Government, through to mid-2020.
The Academy held a roundtable meeting on agricultural science in September, bringing together representatives from more than 30 academic, industry and public sector organisations to discuss key challenges and priorities for agricultural science and innovation in Australia.
Delegates heard from keynote speaker and Academy Fellow Professor Adrienne Clarke, who described her pioneering experience founding the successful Australian Agritech company Hexima. Secretary of the Commonwealth Department of Agriculture and Water Resources Mr Daryl Quinlivan also spoke.
The Future of Australian Agriscience meeting was hosted by two Fellows: Chair of the National Committee for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Professor Barbara Howlett and Secretary, Science Policy Professor David Day. It followed the successful launch of the Agricultural sciences decadal plan in 2017.
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