The latest from Academy Fellows

Movers and shakers

February 8 2019

Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

The chair and managing director of Biocon Limited, Bangalore, India, Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, has been elected a Foreign Fellow of the National Academy of Engineering in the USA. The honour was given for her work in developing affordable biopharmaceuticals and the biotechnology industry in India.


Peter Høj

University of Queensland Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Høj AC has been elected to the Fellowship of the National Academy of Inventors in the United States. This distinction is awarded to academic inventors who have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have had a significant impact on society.


Lyn Beazley

Professor Lyn Beazley has been awarded an Honorary Degree from the Australian National University “for her efforts to encourage every Australian child to learn and love science”.


Andrew Peele

Director of the Australian Synchrotron Professor Andrew Peele is one of two Australians appointed to assist with the development of a $500 million synchrotron facility in Mexico, the first and largest of its kind.


Michelle Simmons

Australian of the Year and quantum computing expert Professor Michelle Simmons led a team that demonstrated a compact sensor for accessing information stored in the electrons of individual atoms – a breakthrough that brings us one step closer to scalable quantum computing in silicon.

The research, conducted within the Simmons group at the Centre of Excellence for Quantum Computation and Communication Technology (CQC2T) with PhD student Prasanna Pakkiam as lead author, was published in the prestigious journal Physical Review X (PRX).


Marlene Kanga

President of the World Federation of Engineering Organisations, Professor Marlene Kanga, was named the 2018 Professional Engineer of the Year by Engineers Australia.

Previously the National President of Engineers Australia, Professor Kanga has had a successful career in oil, gas and chemical industry.


Alan Finkel

Chief Scientist of Australia and former Academy President, Dr Alan Finkel, has been awarded the 2018 Peter Nicol Russel Memorial Medal, the most distinguished award granted by Engineers Australia.

He was awarded in recognition of his eminent career characterised by the broad spectrum of impactful contributions on the engineering profession, technology and the community.


David Abramson wins gold at ACS Digital Disruptors Awards

University of Queensland’s Research and Computing Centre (RCC) won a gold Australian Computer Society Digital Disruptors Award for its latest high-performance computer Wiener. RCC Director is Academy Fellow Professor David Abramson FTSE, who attended a gala to claim the award with a colleague.


Robert Vertessy chairs MDBA advisory committee

The Murray Darling Basin Authority has appointed Professor Robert Vertessy FTSE as Chair of the Advisory Committee on Social, Economic and Environmental Sciences. Professor Vertessy, who also chairs the Academy’s Water Forum, is Enterprise Professor at the University of Melbourne, and the former CEO of the Bureau of Meteorology.


Tony Barry appointed Vice-President of FIDIC

Aurecon senior consultant Tony Barry FTSE has been appointed Vice President of the International Federation of Consulting Engineers (FIDIC).

This global role will involve Mr Barry supporting FIDIC’s mission of developing and implementing strategic goals for the consulting engineering industry on behalf of its 104 member associations.


Ian Poiner appointed Chair of GBRMPA

Dr Ian Poiner FTSE has been appointed Chair of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority. Dr Poiner has previously chaired the Integrated Marine Observing System, and he was the CEO of the Australian Institute of Marine Science.


Chennupati Jagadish elected to INAE

Australian National University physicist Professor Chennupati Jagadish AC FAA FTSE has been elected as a Foreign Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE).

Among his many achievements, Professor Jagadish pioneered the creation of high-performance next generation optical devices set to change the field of communications, solar cells and data storage. In 2016, he was named a Companion of the Order of Australia for his services to physics and engineering.


David Rand writes fuel cell tech book

The third edition of the book, Fuel Cell Systems Explained, was recently published, co-authored by Academy Fellow and former CSIRO Chief Research Scientist Dr David Rand AM FTSE.

Published by Wiley, the book explains fuel cell technologies from the ground up, assuming no prior knowledge and bringing together all the essential principles and topics in this diverse field.


Tony Wong wins IWA Global Water Award

Professor Tony Wong FTSE received the International Water Association’s prestigious Global Water Award, recognising his influential work and research in water sensitive urban design.

For more than 30 years, Professor Wong has devoted his career to the important field of urban water across sectors and disciplines. He has led many award-winning urban design projects in Australia and overseas, and was formerly the Chief Executive and Director of Monash University’s Centre for Water Sensitive Cities.


Three Academy Fellows become Honorary Bragg Members

The Royal Institution of Australia have inducted three Academy Fellows as Honorary Bragg Members: Dr Megan Clark AC FTSE, Professor Maree Smith FTSE and Alan Joyce AC FTSE.

Honorary Bragg Membership is the highest category of membership awarded by The Royal Institution of Australia and recognises excellence in scientific achievement and commitment to science in Australia.


Denise Goldsworthy joins CRC Advisory Committee

Managing Director of Alternate Futures, Denise Goldsworthy FTSE, has been appointed to one of two vacancies on the Cooperative Research Centres (CRC) Advisory Committee. She will be part of the assessment panel for all CRC and CRC-P applications, which recommends which submissions receive funding from the Federal Government.


Kathryn Fagg appointed to CSIRO board

Engineer and President of Chief Executive Women Kathryn Fagg FTSE has been appointed to the CSIRO Board for a five-year term.

The Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, Karen Andrews, said Ms Fagg’s background in engineering, combined with her executive skills and wide business experience, made her an excellent choice for the Board.


Nigel Lovell wins US Naval Research grant

Professor Nigel Lovell FTSE is part of a University of NSW team that recently won a US Naval Research grant of almost $500,000 to continue their research into neural interfacing.

The team invented the first chip that uses fibre optics technology to measure signals from the brain and convert them to an image that can be read by a machine. And the grant is aimed at advancing the development of these chips, which could lead to the creation of an interface to restore lost functions in disabled people.