Group of Eight sticks to the research script

While spooks and free speech dominate discussion Vicki Thomson stays on message

“We, as a community take the value of research for granted and because we do, governments have felt safe that they also can, without suffering electoral ramifications,” the Group of Eight CEO told the Australian Financial Review’s conference yesterday.

While her members will benefit from any increase in research funding Ms Thomson has expanded the case for it over the years from theirs to the nation’s interest, making the case that without more research funding Australia will not, cannot, play in the global game.

“Will Australia’s stream of quality research grow, or falter? If it grows – then as a nation Australia will continue to be invited to play in the big tent. Australia will continue to be seen as worthy of contributing, being listened to, and knowing what is happening in the labs of other vital nations,” she said yesterday.

“Or, will be reduced to a bit economic player, slipping down the slippery slope of that ever more competitive global economy. The choice is ours.”


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