Appointments, achievements of the week

Of the day

Science and Technology Australia announces four new members of its STEM policy committee; Adrian Barnett (Stats Society of Australia), Andrew Black (Stem Cells Australia), Bek Christensen (Ecological Society of Australia), Kathleen Beyer (ARC Centre for Climate Extremes). Les Field (Royal Australian Chemical Institute) is appointed “to support the work of the committee”.

Jianfei Cai will join Monash U’s IT faculty to lead data science and artificial intelligence. He moves from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and starts in September.

Of the week

Peter Meikle from the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute is appointed co-director for precision medicine by the Australian Cardiovascular Alliance. The Baker’s Garry Jennings will lead implementation research and policy for the ACvA.

The British Royal Academy has announced its 2019 Fellows, including Sarah Coakley(ACU – among other appointments). Cynthia Hardy (Uni Melbourne) becomes a corresponding fellow.

Edward Chew, (Walter and Eliza Hall) has won a 2019 Picchi Award for cancer research. He wins for clinical research.  Amanda Oliver (Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre) wins for basic science. And Sibel Saya (Uni Melbourne) is honoured for population health.

 The Australian Historical Association announces the winner of the inaugural Ann Curthoys Prize for an unpublished article-length work by an early career historian. It goes to Skye Krichauff (Uni Adelaide).

University of Wollongong VC, Paul Wellings has an hon doc from the University of Surrey. Only seems fair, in December UoW awarded an hon doc to Uni Surrey’s VC Max Lu. Their two institutions are two of the four members of the University Global Partnership Network, which works, “on matters of global importance.”

Jean Brodie is the incoming head of Swinburne U’s Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing. She joins from University of California Santa Cruz.

Belinda Mulcahy and Dean Biron (Griffith U) receive Open Universities Australia Teaching Excellence awards for outstanding satisfaction ratings for students in Griffith’s criminology and criminal justice bachelor degree, via OUA.

Curtin U has a new head of the School of Physiotherapy and Exercise ScienceLinda Woodhouse has moved from the University of Alberta.

The first energy expert in residence at ANU is microeconomics and energy expert Andreas Loeschel. He is visiting from Muenster U, in Germany.

Frank Caruso (University of Melbourne) is the Royal Society’s 2019 Leverhume Medalist for nanoscale materials engineering in medicine and biology. Yes, that Royal Society, the one dating from 1660.

Gary Smith is the next, and seventh, chancellor of Murdoch University. He is a former state chair of consultants KPMG. Mr Smith replaces David Flanagan who served two terms.

The Innovative Research Universities appoints an inaugural VC’s fellow for medical research, Brendon Douglas. He is now director of research at Charles Darwin U and the Menzies School of Health Research. He will split time between these roles and the IRU, for which he will provide high level coordination and strategic advice, plus Medical Research Future Fund insights, and other support across shared IRU interests.

Elizabeth Halcomb (Uni Wollongong) is awarded the Bridges-Webb Medal for contributions to academic primary care.

Marc Oxenham from ANU has a four-year fellowship from the British Academy’s Global Professorship programme. He will be based at the University of Aberdeen and work on human stress and resilience in ancient Scotland and Northern Ireland.

ANU has created the Research School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Environmental Engineering and the first (albeit honorary) appointment is Junichiro Kawaguchi. Professor Kawaguchi is a space exploration scientist famous as project manager for the sample – return mission to the Itokawa asteroid.


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