What were you researching before you started as a Science Policy Fellow?
My field of study was coal and mineral beneficiation. Beneficiation is the process by which valuable particles within a mined ore are separated from the unwanted particles. My focus was on developing a new method for separating very small particles based on differences in their surface chemistry.
What policy area are you working on through the Science Policy Fellowship Program?
I have been working on the National Resources Statement, which is a policy document that outlines the Australian Government’s long-term vision and goals for the Australian resources sector. The Statement also details an action plan for achieving these goals.
How has your research background helped you contribute to policy development?
My research background gave me the ability to critically evaluate information and develop solutions based on this information. It also taught me the importance of understanding context of my work.
How has the program changed your career aspirations?
Before I started the program, I was looking for an opportunity to use my research background to contribute to government decision-making. I could hardly believe it when I found this program! Now, six months in, I’m sure a career in policy making is right for me and am excited about the opportunities it offers.
What is your favourite part about working in a policy role in the Australian Public Service?
My favourite part is that all of the work centres on improving the welfare of the Australian public. I also find the work extremely stimulating and enjoy the complex interplay between the various factors that affect a given policy, for example, the science, people’s values, and economic conditions.