The urban built environment, the marine environment and energy transformation are key areas where Australian researchers and industry partners could collaborate more effectively to address issues of sustainability, according to Future Earth Australia.
The case for greater collaboration is laid out in Future Earth Australia’s business plan launched this month, as it rallies for stronger research partnerships to address the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Australian Academy of Science President, Professor Andrew Holmes, welcomed the new plan.
“Future Earth Australia has a crucial role to play in the generation of enduring solutions to address the most urgent sustainability challenges facing humanity,” Professor Holmes said.
“The challenges are complex but communities across the globe, including in Australia and our region, are capable of connected research approaches that find and deliver solutions.”
Hosted by the Australian Academy of Science, Future Earth Australia is a partnership of Australia’s learned academies, Australian universities, research institutes, industry and government agencies focused on advancing sustainability.
Future Earth Australia’s business plan outlines its objective to have at least four collaborative research programs operational by 2022 that will incorporate solutions to the United Nation’s SDGs.
To achieve that, Professor Ian Chubb, former Australian Chief Scientist and current Chair of Future Earth Australia’s Advisory Council, said Australia can be an important element in global research initiatives aimed at ensuring the future of our planet.
“Australia needs to become a part of the international innovation community and it needs to mobilise its comparative advantages in research towards addressing the SDGs,” Professor Chubb said.
Dr Imran Ahmad, Director of Future Earth Australia, said integrated catchment management is a good example where Australian research institutions have come together to provide effective natural resource management solutions customised to local needs.
“Elsewhere however, integrated and collaborative approaches are less prominent. Nationally and internationally, connecting for sustainability still has some way to go, which is where Future Earth Australia comes in,” Dr Ahmad said.
To find out how to become a member of the world’s largest knowledge network dedicated to finding solutions to global sustainability, read Future Earth Australia’s new membership prospectus.
© 2017 Australian Academy of Science