Australia is a tech-savvy nation, with excellent research, great start-ups, and relationships with some of the best science minds in the world. But how do we use these advantages to reap the benefits of the new economy?

Several hexagons containing symbols representing different tech options

As thousands of Australian children walk back through the school gates, I can’t help wondering how many will go on to become the next generation of scientists, researchers, innovators and STEM teachers. 

Student with magnifying glass

The global demand for critical minerals sets the scene for a new kind of mining boom in Australia, but the scale of the challenges should not be underestimated – and jobs and skills are high on the list.

lightbulb illuminating the dark

As the Jobs and Skills Summit considers important questions of job security and wages, the role of science and technology-led discovery in the jobs of the next two decades must be front and centre. 

Dr Cathy Foley at Desk

Dr Cathy Foley shared her thoughts on the importance of ethics and diversity when creating next generation technologies in the January issue of ATSE’s IMPACT magazine.

Graphic representation of a brain with artificial intelligence

The new technologies will change the way you and I live our lives, from the cars we drive to the materials we use to build and power our homes, from the way diseases are diagnosed and treated, to the way we communicate and interact.

Dr Cathy Foley

The world of academic publishing is like a library that only the librarians are allowed into. This makes no sense if Australia wants to maximises its investment in research by fostering greater knowledge, prosperity, innovation, economic activity and environmental and social understanding.

Unlocking the academic library.

"The beginning of my term coincided with one of the most momentous scientific breakthroughs in a century: the detection of gravitational waves... As I finish my term, the contribution of Australian scientists to that discovery has just been recognised in the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science. As chair of the Prizes selection committee, this was a nice bookend for me. More importantly, it’s a reminder we are playing the long game."

Dr Finkel reflected on his term as Australia’s Chief Scientist in an article in the Conversation, published on Wednesday 9 December 2020.

"The hard-won gains made by women in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) are at risk, especially if employers of people with STEM skills do not closely monitor and mitigate the gender impact of their decisions."

On the release of the Australian 2020 STEM Workforce Report and in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic; Dr Finkel and Prof. Harvey-Smith, Women in STEM Ambassador; reflected on its unique impact on women in STEM.

Woman in laboratory facing away from the camera

" ...We saw good reason for confidence. The states and territories have boosted investments and readiness, and their handling of the pandemic is effective. What they need to know is that their neighbours are similarly prepared."

Dr Finkel published an editorial in the Herald Sun newspaper on Saturday 14 November 2020.
The full editorial is available below.

Photo by Mufid Majnun on Unsplash