Australian Geoscience Council Inc.

Research and Innovation

Position Statements I Research and Innovation

The Australian Geoscience Council believes research is fundamental to the long-term wellbeing of the geosciences in Australia, and therefore to the future of the resource industry, the environment and sustainable development. Australian geoscience research is globally recognised for its high standards but must be maintained and further enhanced if it is to meet the wide wide range of applications which are so important to the Australian economy and to the mangement of the natural environment. These applications include mineral and petroleum exploration and resource extraction, land degradation studies, groundwater assessment and managment, coastal and marine zone management and the mitigation of geological hazards. In particular, the Australian Geoscience Council supports:

  • encouragement for geoscience research by Federal and State governments, industry and the tertiary sector to the extent that Australia’s international standing in geoscience research is maintained and enhanced;
  • promotion of per capita funding of Australian R & D to levels matching those of other OECD countries as a basis for helping to ensure that Australian geoscience research is funded at a level commensurate with the role that the geosciences play in the Australian economy;
  • encouragement of continued commitment to applied research within industry;
  • promotion in Governments of pure research, the socioeconomic benefits of which are likely to be on a longer time scale than for which industry can provide support;
  • adoption across agencies and institutions responsible for geoscience research of a reasonable balance between the shorter-term needs of applied research and the longer-term opportunities of pure research;
  • facilitation of links between governments, industry, the tertiary sector and professional societies in order to foster geoscience research; and
  • encouragement of Governments, their agencies and the tertiary education sector to offer suitably remunerative research careers in Australia thereby enabling our excellent geoscience researchers to progress in their professions that will enable them to undertake research careers in Australia, without the need to dilute their efforts in management roles to obtain proper remuneration.

The Australian Geoscience Council also supports the encouragement of innovative behaviour, a better appreciation of new technologies and the value of intellectual property. The Council, in particular, supports:

  • greater opportunities to enhance information dissemination and awareness about key technologies, which are recognised as having or likely to have a significant impact in the minerals and energy resource industry in the medium term;
  • the cultivation of creative thinking to encourage geoscientists to perceive technology as a means of determining a novel use for an existing product or a new solution to an old problem;
  • advancement of strategies for geoscientists that maximise the value of their intellectual property as a commercial commodity in a rapidly changing global environment;
  • encouragement of geoscientists to broaden their technical (and commercial) skills and their understanding of key technologies beyond their own particular specialisations and to establish productive relationships with professionals from other disciplines and in other organisations;
  • the fostering of the development of individual networks and linkages among geoscientists (based on an interest in key technologies) within both their own organisations and into other sectors of industry – where appropriate, geoscientists should be encouraged to coordinate, and chair, multi-specialist groups;
  • encouragement of geoscientists to share information on the application of key technologies in the minerals and energy industry;
  • promotion within the minerals and energy industry of the need for an innovative culture and a clearer understanding of the relationship between the development of new technologies and the communal benefits acquired by their application to the workplace, and
  • encouragement of geoscientists employed in industry and in related research and development organisations to undertake post-graduate courses in technology management, with particular emphasis on such continuing education becoming an essential requirement for professional registration.
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