Dr Andrew Bean’s research areas focus on “One Health” and research directed at enhancing health by identifying new antiviral strategies, developing better therapeutics, vaccines and improving disease diagnosis. Dr Bean’s research strategies involve understanding host/pathogen interactions and, from the knowledge gained, develop new therapeutics for disease control.
Associate Professor, Functional Materials & Microsystem Research Group RMIT
Associate Professor Madhu Bhaskaran co-leads the Functional Materials and Microsystems Research Group at RMIT University. Her research interests include functional oxide thin films and stretchable electronics. She has won several awards and fellowships for her research including competitive Australian Research Council Postdoctoral Fellowship (2010-2014) and Australian Research Council DECRA Fellowship (2016-2018). She has also won a Victoria Fellowship and has been named as one of Top 10 Innovators under 35 for Asia (MIT Technology Review 2016).
Research Scientist, Defence Science & Technology Group
Nicola Bilton is a research scientist at the Defence Science and Technology Group. Nicola joined DST Group as a student cadet while completing a BSc(Hons) in Physics at The University of Adelaide, majoring in both Experimental and Theoretical Physics. After graduating, she transitioned into her current role as a research scientist working in the advanced sensors discipline. Her research has largely involved developing and investigating SPAD-based long range LADAR systems, which includes extensive characterization and assessment of the performance of the SPAD array sensors and performance testing of various systems. Nicola participated in CSIRO’s ON Prime: Defence program with her DST Group colleagues, Joyce Mau and Dr Dennis Delic, where they were able to explore and validate potential applications of SPAD LADAR systems, and where they won the best team award.
Research Fellow, Centre for Integrative Ecology, Deakin University
Lucie Bland holds a BA (Hons) in Biological Sciences from the University of Oxford and a PhD from Imperial College London. Lucie completed her first postdoc at the University of Melbourne and is now a Research Fellow at the Centre for Integrative Ecology at Deakin University. Her work focuses on assessing risks to biodiversity with the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and Red List of Ecosystems protocols. She is interested in ecosystem modelling, risk analysis, and global conservation policy. Lucie Bland was awarded the Eureka award for environmental research in 2015, and was a finalist in the Victorian Young Achiever Awards in 2017.
Research Fellow, UTS
Dr Carlo Bradac is a Research Fellow. He studied physics and engineering at the Polytechnic of Milan (Italy) where he achieved his bachelor (2004) and master degree (2006) in Engineering for Physics and Mathematics. He received his PhD in Physics at Macquarie University in 2012. Carlo worked as an Engineer at National Instruments (2006-2007) and at Maire Tecnimont (2007-2008), and as a Research Fellow at Sydney University (2012-2013) and Macquarie University (2013-2017). He is currently at the University of Technology, Sydney. His research focuses on nanotechnology. He is a co-founder of the start-up company LuciGem, producing diamond nanoparticles for bio-applications.
Associate Professor, Flinders University
Sheree Cairney is a neuroscientist who has worked with Aboriginal groups across the far corners of the Australian continent for nearly two decades. Her research has highlighted brain-behavioural changes related to petrol sniffing and other drugs, and led to ground-breaking clinical evidence that the brain can repair itself if substance abuse stops early enough. She established culturally relevant assessments of brain function, mental health and wellbeing among Aboriginal people. Her research has informed policy and been translated into interactive multimedia tools that communicate health and education messages to diverse demographics. She currently leads a national project on Aboriginal wellbeing in remote Australia. Sheree is passionate about using collaboration and innovation to create change through integrating science, culture, art, business and policy.
KAI XUN CHAN
Postdoctoral Research Associate, ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology, ANU
Kai Xun Chan completed his Bachelor’s degree in Biotechnology with First Class Honours and a University Medal in Biology in 2010 at the Australian National University (ANU). In December 2015 he completed his PhD in Plant Sciences in Professor Barry Pogson’s laboratory at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology, ANU, elucidating the structural regulation of the chloroplast signaling protein SAL1.
Throughout his short academic career so far, Kai has won numerous awards including the JG Crawford Medal, the ANU’s premier award for graduate excellence; a Young Scientist Award at the 9th International Conference on Plant Sulfur Metabolism in Freiburg, and the Hiroto Naora Award. He is the recipient of several competitive fellowships and scholarships including a Marie Curie Postdoctoral Fellowship from the European Commission (commencing 2018), a Flanders Research Foundation (FWO) fellowship the Endeavour International Postgraduate Research Scholarship (IPRS) and Australian Postgraduate Award, as well as grants from ANU-UC Connect Ventures, EMBL Australia, the American Society of Plant Biologists, Gordon Research Conferences and the ANU.
Kai is currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology, ANU. He has published in various international peer-reviewed journals including PNAS, eLife, Annual Review of Plant Biology, and Trends in Plant Science . He also serves as an ad hoc reviewer for specialist plant research journals including The Plant Cell, The Plant Journal and Journal of Experimental Botany
Professor and Head of the Space Plasma, Power and Propulsion laboratory, Australian National University
For the past twenty five years, Christine Charles has been working on experimental expanding plasmas and their applications to space science, space propulsion and microelectronics. She is the inventor of the Helicon Double Layer Thruster, a new electrode-less magneto-plasma thruster for space use. She was the 2009 Australian Institute of Physics’ Women in Physics Lecturer, a Finalist in both the 2011 Australian Innovation Challenge and the 2011 World Technology Awards. She was recently awarded the 2015 Women in Industry Excellence in Engineering. She has published over 200 articles in various international peer-reviewed journals and her scientific output has been recognised by her Fellowship of the American Physical Society in 2013 and her Fellowship of the Australian Academy of Science in 2015. In late 2015 she was instrumental in reviving the QB50 satellite AU03 which was completed in a record time of 10 months by the USyd/ANU/UNSW Australian team (www.qb50.eu). She actively popularises her science on ABC Catalyst, Discovery Channel, radio and public lectures and she was a TEDx Canberra speaker in 2014 (youtu.be/n-17xqfF4FU). She plays keyboard jazz with her group, Harmonic Propulsion, that performs around Canberra.
Founder and Chairman, CLARA
Nick Cleary’s background is in a range of fields including agri-business, financial services and real estate. Nick founded CLARA and subsidiary Infrastructure Corporation Australia (2011) to seek out new infrastructure opportunities to be supported by the private sector including High Speed Rail, Inland City Development, a second Sydney Airport and Land-Port facilities.
Nick has a passion for regional communities and the potential that resides within. He continues to seek ways to play an active role in contributing to the improvement of people’s lives across the East Coast of Australia. Nick served as Vice Chairman of the NSW Nationals over 2013-2016.
In 2015 Nick Cleary founded Consolidated Land and Rail Australia (CLARA) to deliver a program to change Australia. CLARA is an Australian private group which seeks to undertake a re-balancing of our settlement and deliver new ways of imagining, planning and building cities, transport and infrastructure. This is a population strategy for our nation.
CLARA is proposing to build eight new regional, compact, sustainable, SMART cities and connect them by the world’s most advanced high speed rail between Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne.
Project Manager: Biofabrication and Tissue Morphology, Queensland University of Technology
Mathilde Desselle is a Project Manager at QUT in the space of Biofabrication, applying 3D technologies to medicine. An award-winning biomedical research manager, she has 10 years experience driving strategic life sciences research programs and facilities in Europe and Australia, she is passionate with finding technology-based approaches to advance human health. She is a Board Director for the Tech Girls Movement foundation, an ABC Radio Brisbane Community correspondent, and a coordinator for the National Science Week Catch a QLD Rising Star.
Post-graduate research student, Curtin University
Combining qualifications in Behavioural Science and Mechanical Engineering, and experience working within private, government and university sectors, James is particularly interested in research and development of energy transitions. Specifically, his principal areas of interest are in the propagation of distributed electricity generation, democratisation and decarbonisation of the energy market, the rise of the ‘prosumer’, and future energy network design. In essence, James seeks to align his passion for technology with his work, complementing the knowledge he has developed throughout his career through his PhD research.
Associate Professor, University of Sydney
Will Figueira is an Associate Professor of Marine Animal Biology in the School of Life and Environmental Sciences at the University of Sydney. He is the Director of the University’s field station at One Tree Island on the southern Great Barrier Reef and is currently the President of the peak body for Marine Sciences in Australia, the Australian Marine Sciences Association (AMSA). Will has general expertise in the area of fish population ecology and runs a variety of research programs involving field and lab studies of organisms in tropical and temperature marine environments. Much of his current research has focused around the impacts of climate-change driven ocean warming on the ecological processes involving marine fish in both tropical and temperate habitats. He has ongoing studies of the diversity of tropical fishes that can be found in temperate waters during the summer with the aim of predicting what our future temperate rocky reefs will look like as the oceans warm. His work also has a focus on the importance of structural complexity to fish communities. He is a founder of the 3Dreefs project which aims to use novel technologies to 3D map reefs, thereby providing powerful outreach tools but also the data needed to predict the outcome of changes to reef structure that can result from cyclones and bleaching on coral reefs or the development and armouring of shorelines in temperate habitats.
PROJECT: 3D Reefs
Principal Scientist, BioHerbicides Australia
Associate Professor Victor Galea is a lecturer in plant pathology at the University of Queensland with expertise in the management of crop diseases using predictive models, the use of biological control organisms to manage plant pests and diseases and the understanding of the role of beneficial fungi on plant root functioning. His research on the dieback syndrome in woody weeds has resulted in the development of a novel bioherbicide and delivery mechanism for the management of Parkinsonia, an invasive woody weed of Australian rangelands and the environment. Victor Galea is principal scientist for the UQ start-up company BioHerbicides Australia.
Research Project Leader, CSIRO
Mala Gamage is a research project leader in CSIRO. The development of chemical free treatments for insect disinfestation and pathogen disinfection is essential in overcoming biosecurity issues to promote sustainable future growth of the horticulture and grain industries.
Her research focuses primarily on the innovative processing of fruit and vegetables using high pressure, ultrasound and microwave technologies. She works closely with large to medium scale food companies and Research and Development corporations in Australia. She currently leads a number of projects on product specific research required to evaluate the feasibility of using these new technologies.
CEO & Founder, Imagine Intelligent Materials
Chris Gilbey is the CEO and founder of Imagine Intelligent Materials. Chris has been involved IP licensing businesses for over 40 years. His career in IP started in music. He signed and developed artists and songwriters such as AC/DC, InXs, and Keith Urban. His career evolved into running internet businesses and then an ASX listed digital signal processing company, Lake Technology. After Lake’s acquisition by Dolby Laboratories, he became global strategy advisor to the consumer licensing division of Dolby, driving revenue growth from key consumer electronics companies in Japan, Korea and China. He then became Entrepreneur in Residence at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Electromaterials Science (ACES) at the University of Wollongong and Honorary Principal Fellow at the Sydney Business School. While at ACES he was responsible for spinning out a water-splitting company before founding Imagine Intelligent Materials.
PhD candidate, University of Melbourne
Linden Jensen-Page is a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne conducting research on shallow geothermal energy, and is a member of the Fourth Element Energy team participating in the Translating Research at Melbourne research commercialisation program. Along with team mates Riyan Aditya, Nick Makasis, Dr Asal Bidarmaghz and supervisor Dr Guillermo Narsilio, Fourth Element Energy aims to introduce large scale shallow geothermal energy to Australia. Shallow geothermal is a highly efficient means of heating and cooling buildings using free energy from the ground, helping to manage electricity demand to counteract the inherent intermittency of solar and wind renewable energy. The team has 30 combined years of experience in shallow geothermal, has delivered $5.4 million in research engagements, and has developed world leading advanced design and modelling software allowing any underground structure to be turned into a source of heat.
Project Manager, LithSonic
Daniel Jewell graduated as a Chemical Engineer in 2004 before turning his hand to high-temperature electrochemical metals extraction in his PhD at the University of Nottingham in the UK. He then worked as a Postdoctoral Research Associate on a titanium extraction process at the University of Cambridge for five years before being internationally recruited as the Research and Development Manager for a pilot titanium plant using CSIRO technology. Since joining CSIRO, he has been a project manager for the MagSonic™ and LithSonic projects, as well as dabbling in other emerging Industry 4.0 technologies, including Additive Manufacturing.
Associate Professor, Monash University
Michelle McIntosh was awarded her PhD (Pharmaceutics) in 2000 from Monash University, then undertook a post-doctoral fellowship in The Center for Drug Delivery Research, University of Kansas where she gained experience in the development of parenteral formulations of poorly water soluble drugs. In 2002 Michelle was appointed as the Assistant Director of the Center to oversee a State funded program to build the local biotechnology industry and commercialise university based technologies. In 2006, Michelle returned to the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (MIPS), to lead a major research program in pulmonary drug delivery. This program has evolved to focus on developing inhaled delivery systems as an alternative to injectable medicines for low resource settings. Most recently this has seen the development of inhaled delivery of oxytocin, designed to prevent unnecessary deaths in the developing world due excessive blood loss in child birth. Michelle’s work has been recognised by former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, as having the potential to be transformational in the field of maternal healthcare. In 2013 Michelle’s work won The Australian Innovation Challenge Award and in early 2014 she presented her work on inhaled oxytocin at the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York. In 2015 she became an Associate Professor at MIPS and the Course Director for the Bachelor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, at Monash University and since 2016 is the founding Director of both the Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre (MMIC) and the HMSTrust Laboratory.
Research Engineer, Defence Science & Technology Group
Joyce Mau is a research engineer at the Defence Science & Technology Group. She holds a BEng(Hons)/BSci from The Australian National University majoring in Electronics and Communications Systems and Mathematics. During university, she worked as a science communicator at Questacon, the National Science and Technology Centre and then joined DST Group on a student cadet scholarship. She implemented detection, recognition and tracking algorithms in GPU to analyse Single Photon Avalanche Diode (SPAD) data for her Honours research project and continues to develop and improve the capability as a research engineer. She is also involved in developing the firmware for SPAD technology with industry and has participated in CSIRO’s ON Prime: Defence Program with Nicola Bilton and Dr Dennis Delic to explore and validate applications of SPAD LADAR systems, where they won the best team award.
Entrepreneur and founder, MindHive
Bruce Muirhead is a successful entrepreneur and founder of Boilerhouse (1999), Eidos (2004) and MindHive (2017). Each platform leverages a network of partners dedicated to developing ideas through collaboration to improve economic and social outcomes in the public interest. Most recently, MindHive works by applying the shared intelligence of 10,000+ experts to organisational challenges. Since 2014 these platforms have been recognised with nine national innovation awards. Bruce has been acknowledged by the Australian Government as leading one of ten national projects (alongside the Sydney Olympics and the response to the Bali bombings) for creating large-scale collaboration to respond to Australia’s priority challenges in social and economic impact.
ARC Future Fellow, The University of Melbourne
Guillermo Narsilio is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow (and Senior Lecturer) in the Department of Infrastructure Engineering and is a founding member of AquaTerra (and Fourth Element Energy) participating in the Translating Research at Melbourne research commercialisation program. Guillermo received his PhD in Geotechnical Engineering (2006) and his Masters in Mathematics (2006) and in Geotechnical Engineering (2003) from Georgia Institute of Technology (USA). Along with team mates Amir Orangi, Chenxi ‘Akito’ Zhang, Ziwei ‘Wayne’ He and Adrian Giecco, AquaTerra will make precision agriculture accessible to all farms. The team has developed a unique cost-effective soil moisture sensing technology that enables measurements from contacting the ground surface without needing insertion of probes.
CEO, Silentium Defence
Dr James Palmer is a co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Silentium Defence Pty Ltd. James is an internationally recognised subject matter expert on Passive Radar signal processing and system development. James graduated from a Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical and Electronic) and Bachelor of Arts (double major in Japanese) degree in 2002 from the University of Queensland. He received his Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from the same institution in 2007. James joined Defence Science and Technology Group in 2006 where he established and led the Passive Radar research programme until November 2015 when he became the Specialist Scientific Adviser (SSA) for Integrated Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance. Whilst in the SSA role, James continued to provide research leadership to the Passive Radar programme and also established and led the team that demonstrated the experimental viability of Passive Radar for Space Situational Awareness. James also has extensive experience with the development of imaging radar signal processing techniques and experimental validation of novel radar waveforms. James has also received commercialisation training through CSIRO’s ON Accelerate programme, and is the inaugural recipient of the Stanford Australia Foundation CSIRO Scholarship. This scholarship is awarded to the ON Accelerate programme participant that demonstrates the greatest entrepreneurial capacity and supports further executive training at Stanford University.
Professor, Institute for Future Environments, Queensland University of Technology
Tristan Perez is a Professor of Autonomous Systems, Decisions and Control at QUT. He leads the IntelliSensing Enabling Platform at QUT’s Institute for Future Environments. This program seeks to develop transdisciplinary research that combines knowledge of digital technologies, analysis and decision making to help others to understand their problems and develop solutions that can transform their practices. Tristan’s main research interests and expertise are in the areas behaviour control of cyberphysical systems, decision making under uncertainty, and robotics. Tristan leads QUT’s actives in agricultural cybernetics, where he and his team are developing new agricultural robots as well as on-line data analytics and optimisation strategies to assist farmer make management decisions. He also works in applications of mathematical system theory to aerospace and marine problems in collaboration with industry and defence.
PROJECT: Agricultural Cybernetics
Research Fellow, Australian e-Health Research Centre CSIRO
Dr Lee Reid is a post-doctoral research fellow at the Australian e-Health Research Centre, CSIRO. He has extensive expertise in neuroimaging (MRI), image processing, neuroscience, medical science, and programming. During his PhD (The University of Queensland), Dr Reid published eight scientific publications on topics such as neuroplasticity, brain injury, and medical imaging. These appeared in well respected journals including Nature Reviews Neurology. He has received international recognition, including from the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Imaging, and an Advance Queensland Research Fellowship Award, designed to nurture ongoing career development in the field of neurosurgery.
PhD candidate, University of Melbourne
Perran Ross is a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne and the Bio21 Institute. He works with Aedes aegypti mosquitoes and Wolbachia bacteria as part of a worldwide effort to combat mosquito-borne disease. He is currently characterising different strains of Wolbachia under stressful environmental conditions in the search to find suitable strains of Wolbachia for disease control. He has published several papers that are now informing Wolbachia-based approaches to dengue control around the world.
Research Fellow, UNSW
David White is a cognitive psychologist at UNSW Sydney. His studies of perceptual expertise have been funded by the Australian Research Council, the Reserve Bank of Australia, Unilever and the Australian Passport Office. He has worked on applied and theoretical problems in this area with a wide network of inter-disciplinary collaborators in academia, industry and government.