Theme Leader, Australia's mineral futures, CSIRO

Anna Littleboy is theme leader of Australia's mineral futures in the CSIRO Minerals Down Under Flagship. The theme was established in mid-2012 to address the issues of energy, water efficiency, productivity, safety and environmental performance across the minerals value chain.

Anna has 20 years research and research management experience in the fields of environmental impact assessment and sustainability for minerals, water and energy resources.

Since joining CSIRO in 2003 she has built a substantive research team exploring the social issues affecting the uptake of new energy and minerals technology and was a member of the team that established the Energy Futures Forum, a ‘unique’ exercise that brought together Australia’s energy and environment stakeholders to identify plausible scenarios and their implications for the nation’s energy future.

She was also formative in the successful commercialisation of CSIRO’s underground coal gasification technology. She shaped the value proposition that saw the approval in 2007 of a new multi-million dollar National Research Flagship in the minerals domain – the Minerals Down Under Flagship.

From 2007 to 2010 she was deputy director of the Minerals Down Under Flagship and from 2011 to 2012 she was research director of CSIRO Futures. In this role Anna and her team conducted strategic assessments of CSIRO's future research investments.

Internationally recognised for her prior work into characterising long-term environmental risks associated with the underground disposal of radioactive wastes, Anna's Master of Philosophy with University College, London examined the challenges to scientists arising from the high level concepts of sustainability and looked at new forms of presentation and communication as a means of enabling constructive deliberation on complex issues.

As a new honours graduate in geology and chemistry in the late eighties, Anna’s early career was spent at the bench and in the field examining the coupled reactive transport of contaminants in ground and urban water.


  • 2012–present
    Theme Leader, Australian mineral futures, CSIRO
  • 2011–2012
    Research Director, Futures, CSIRO
  • 2007–2011
    Deputy Director, Minerals Down Under Flagship, CSIRO


  • 2004 
    University College, London, UK, Master of Philosophy
  • 1999 
    Cranfield University School of Management, UK, Diploma in Management
  • 1986 
    University of Reading, UK , Bachelor of Science (Honours)