Sustainability researchers among 2017 CSIRO Awards recipients


By Lauren Davis
Wednesday, 29 November, 2017


Cereal rusts 002

Australian sustainability researchers are among the winners of the 2017 CSIRO Awards, presented at the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra yesterday.

Now in their 32nd year, the CSIRO Awards showcase the achievements of the national science agency’s people and partners, and the difference their research makes to industry, society and the planet. This year’s awardees have been praised by CSIRO Chief Executive Dr Larry Marshall, who said the agency’s staff are “passionate about creating science-driven solutions for the biggest challenges facing our nation, and thrive on collaborating across the country to make life better for everyone”.

“Every year our people set the bar higher, collaborating with universities and industry more than ever to deliver more game-changing innovations for Australia and the world,” Dr Marshall continued.

One such innovation came from the CSIRO cereal rust disease prevention team, whose research has contributed to global food security by protecting cereal crops against rust diseases. The team won the Chairman’s Medal for Science Excellence for their efforts.

The cereal rust disease prevention team. ©Karl Schwerdtfeger, photographer.

The Medal for Lifetime Achievement was meanwhile awarded to two sustainability researchers: Dr Jennifer Stauber, for her landmark research that has underpinned national water and sediment quality guidelines for environmental protection in Australasia and globally over 38 years; and Dr Mark Stafford Smith, for over 30 years of international leadership in sustainability science that has informed policy and management of human ecosystems under global change and uncertainty.

Dr Jennifer Stauber, recipient of the Medal for Lifetime Achievement.

Dr Mark Stafford Smith, recipient of the Medal for Lifetime Achievement.

Still on the sustainability theme, Dr Robyn Hall’s research into managing wild rabbit populations helped secure her the John Philip Award for the Promotion of Excellence in Young Scientists. The CSIRO Medal for Impact from Science meanwhile went to the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA), which provides free online access to information about Australia’s biodiversity.

Dr Robyn Hall, recipient of the John Philip Award for the Promotion of Excellence in Young Scientists.

The Atlas of Living Australia developed what has been described as world-leading e-research infrastructure.

The full list of awardees can be found on the CSIRO website.

Top image caption: The cereal rust disease prevention team is protecting cereal crops against rust diseases. ©Karl Schwerdtfeger, photographer.

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