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Research Issues Paper Released

Hon Peter McGauran, MP

Australian Commonweath Minister of Science

Media Release

RESEARCH ISSUES PAPER RELEASED

22/05/2002

Federal Science Minister Peter McGauran today welcomed the release of an Issues Paper on national research priorities, along with the formation of a high-level consultative panel.

The panel (attached), chaired by Chief Scientist Dr Robin Batterham, is set to play a key role in the public consultation phase of the research priority setting process.

The nine-member panel has been appointed by the Government to stimulate public debate and encourage research bodies and organisations to talk to their members about their preferred priorities.

"The panel features representatives with a broad range of experience and expertise," Mr McGauran said.

"They are all leaders in their field who see national priorities as enabling Australia to better exploit its competitive advantages, while achieving wider economic and social goals.

"We need to achieve maximum value from our research effort within a national context. This Issues Paper and the consultation that will follow, is an important part of the Government’s effort to set the blueprint for science and innovation research in the future.

"The importance the Government places on this task is evident in the speed with which we moving on this. The timetable for the consultation next month is available on the national research priorities website and will also be advertised in the national newspapers."

Mr McGauran said the Issues Paper was intended to spark debate in the community.

"The Issues Paper sets out an approach that will build on and complement Australia’s existing research and innovation system," he said.

"We propose a model based on broad themes and underpinned by specific areas of research priority. The themes should be recognisable by all Australians as critical areas of research for our future.

"The Government will rely on the expert advice of the various research communities on what ought to be Australia’s national research priorities.

"This is an opportunity for us to develop a vision of where we want Australia to be in five, ten or even 15 years from now.

"The priorities we adopt and implement will be this generation of Australians’ contribution to the task of building our nation.

"It is an exciting time in the world of science and I look forward to working closely with the consultative panel and the broader research community in the months ahead."

The Issues Paper can be downloaded from the National Research Priorities website - www.dest.gov.au/priorities.


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