Academy welcomes Labor’s commitment to science

November 28, 2018
Man making a speech
Leader of the Opposition Bill Shorten outlined his vision for science in a speech at the Shine Dome

The Australian Academy of Science has welcomed the Federal Opposition Leader’s commitment to science and his plan for working with Australia’s science and research sector if elected in 2019.

Bill Shorten outlined his vision for science in a speech at the Shine Dome in Canberra this evening.

Academy President Professor John Shine said he was pleased to see Bill Shorten commit to a number of the Academy’s recommendations put forward in its science priorities for the federal election.

The Academy welcomes Labor’s commitment to establish a Charter that recognises the mutual obligations of scientists and government and to establish meaningful national priorities.

The Academy welcomes the restoration of the Prime Minister’s Science and Innovation Council (PMSIC) and is honoured by the proposal that Labor, if elected, would partner with the Australian Academy of Science to establish a National Scientific Expert Panel to work directly with the PMSIC.

“In our election statement we called for a review to look at how effectively research is being supported because only then can we know that maximum benefits are being returned. So we are pleased Labor has committed to holding an inquiry to build a long term framework for the research sector,” Professor Shine said.

“We note and applaud that Academy Fellow Professor Ian Chubb AC FAA will Chair the review and other members will include former Academy President, Professor Andrew Holmes AC FAA as well as other leading scientists, such as Professor Emma Johnston AO and Professor Karen Hussey.

 The Academy also welcomes the announcement by Labor to:

  • lead a national effort to encourage more women and girls to study and work in STEM;
  • recognise the important contribution and role of early and mid-career researchers;
  • lift Australian spending on R&D to three per cent by 2030;
  • legislate that ministerial changes to Australian Research Council funding recommendations be tabled in Australian Parliament; and
  • increase collaboration between public and private industry R&D.

The Academy looks forward to further policies from Labor as well as the Government on how they will deliver a coherent and visionary plan for science to drive the nation’s future.

© 2018 Australian Academy of Science

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