New Head for CSIRO

Thursday, 09 November, 2000

FASTS welcomes the announcement by Science Minister Senator Nick Minchin of the appointment of Dr Geoff Garrett as the new Chief Executive Officer of CSIRO.

FASTS' President Professor Sue Serjeantson said the Head of CSIRO is one of the key positions in Australian science. "CSIRO is Australia's largest and most powerful research organisation," she said. "Its work covers many disciplines and all regions of Australia."

"The work of CSIRO has huge implications for Australians, both in creating wealth-generating industries and solving environmental problems....

Professor Serjeantson said that CSIRO had been under funding pressure for the last decade. Its budget has been reduced by 24 per cent (relative to GDP) over this period, and staff numbers have fallen by 12 per cent.

"Dr Garrett is taking charge of the helm at a time when the Government is reassessing the Australian national investment in science and research," she said. "The Government has indicated it will make an announcement on these matters by January 2001.It could be an exciting and challenging time to be in charge of a major research organisation like CSIRO."

Professor Serjeantson said Dr Garrett's international experience, in both industry and research, would be invaluable as pressures grow on Australian science to be competitive, both commercially and internationally.

For further information please contact: Mr Toss Gascoigne on 0408 704 442.

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