Academy reports 2021 achievements

May 31, 2022

Improving Australians’ understanding of the benefits of immunization is one of several achievements highlighted in the recently published annual report 2021

To support vaccination and other COVID-related health messages, the Academy, in partnership with the Australian Government, has created information for the wider public through print, videos, online articles and infographics on websites, media and social media, and supported international collaboration of experts through a series of webinars. It also called for an RNA production capacity in Australia and convened a national RNA expert roundtable.

The Academy’s strong focus on climate change has included highlighting the risks of a warmer world for Australia and the publication of an information center ahead of international climate change meetings in October.

It also focused on improving diversity and inclusion in science, remained highly active in international and bilateral science activities, and drafted a Decade Plan for Space Science to be released in early 2022.

The three innovative school education programs received multi-year funding from the Australian Government to develop and expand educational resources and program outreach.

“Every major problem that affects our society today depends on scientific input. We are a community that promotes international and national engagement in science, supports and celebrates scientific excellence, and we are an increasingly prominent voice for Australian science,” said Academy President Professor John Shine in his introduction to the report.

We are an increasingly prominent voice for Australian science.

Academy Chief Executive Anna-Maria Arabia said the annual report shows “how the Academy strives to have science valued and strategically positioned to boost our economy and drive decision-making in and between governments, in our parliaments, our courts, our classrooms, in boardrooms and in the public square”.

Both leaders thanked the Academy Fellows for their contributions to science and their support of the Academy.

“In November, Academy Fellow Professor Eddie Holmes received the Premier’s Prize for Science for his outstanding contributions to virology, not least his impact on our understanding of COVID-19. Congratulations to Professor Holmes for this award and for his tireless commitment to research during the pandemic, and to all our fellows who have received external awards and honors,” said Professor Shine.

Other achievements reported in the annual report include:

  • organize an expert roundtable on the World Heritage Convention and climate change
  • a call to pardon from Kathleen Folbigg based on recent strong scientific evidence
  • the launch of a champions program to support the implementation of the Decade Plan for Nutrition
  • an appeal to the government of NSW to remove all wild horses from Kosciuszko National Park
  • the launch of the STEM Women database to raise the profile of women in STEM
  • holding or participating in 37 events in many scientific fields
  • welcoming more than 4.4 million visitors to Academy websites and publishing more than 70 videos, many of which were embedded in mainstream media stories
  • far-reaching improvements to the monumental buildings of the Academy.

In 2021 Academy published:

  • a climate report on the risks of a warming world for Australia
  • an updated booklet on immunization for a wide audience
  • a 10-year strategy for sustainable oceans and coasts
  • a report identifying opportunities to advance data-intensive research in Australia
  • a summary for policymakers on Australia’s digital future
  • outcomes of two round table discussions with experts
  • a report on gender inequality in the STEM workforce in Asia-Pacific
  • a Deloitte Access Economics report supporting the acceleration of discovery and documentation of Australia’s remaining biodiversity.

“The work of the Academy continues to be a tremendous source of pride to me, made possible by the guidance and support of our Fellows and the generosity of our donors,” said Ms. Arabia.

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