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2015 saw us complete our exploration of all nine planets (including dwarf planet Pluto) in our solar system. NASA

2015, the year that was: Science + Technology

2015 was a year where we expanded our view of the universe, embraced new technologies and got a hint of the profound changes to come.
Malcolm Turnbull has now announced his strategy to promote innovation and science in Australia. AAP/Lukas Coch

Expert panel: what the national innovation statement means for science

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull today announced the National Innovation and Science Agenda (NISA). Here's what it means for science, commercialisation and industry in Australia.
Cooperation among scientific disciplines still requires individual experts in their fields. Sharon & Nikki McCutcheon/Flickr

Science in silos isn’t such a bad thing

Interdisciplinary research is a lofty ideal, but the realities of how science is conducted mean that silos should not be so quickly dismissed.
Universities will need to make some significant adjustments to meet the government’s targets in boosting the commercialisation of research. shutterstock

Boosting commercialisation of research poses a big challenge for universities

The government has proposed changes to how Australia's publicly funded research agencies are supported and how their performance is managed to boost the commercialisation of research.
Facilities funded under NCRIS, such as the Murchison Widefield Array, will continue to be supported under this budget. Natasha Hurley-Walker/Wikimedia

Budget brief: how does science and research funding fare?

The National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy and Future Fellowships schemes have won a reprieve in this year's budget.
Research infrastructure, such as the H-1NF at the Australian Plasma Fusion Research Facility, enables our world leading science. Australian Plasma Fusion Research Facility

Securing the future of Australia’s research infrastructure

Australia needs to take a longer term view of research infrastructure funding in order to prevent it from becoming politicised.
Education Minister Christopher Pyne at today’s press conference in Canberrra. Mick Tsikas/AAP

Pyne backflips on research infrastructure funding cut

Education Minister Christopher Pyne has backed down on his threat to defund NCRIS if the Senate failed to pass the government's university deregulation bill.
New innovations and technologies, such as the Nanopatch developed by Australian biotech Vaxxas, are instrumental to Australia’s future prosperity, and many benefit from NCRIS facilities, which are now under threat from government cuts. AIBN

Intergenerational prosperity depends on supporting research

The government believes innovation will be crucial to our future productivity, yet it is threatening cuts to research infrastructure that is instrumental to promoting innovation and new technologies.
TERN operates a number of flux towers that measure energy, water and carbon dioxide fluxes and their drivers in the vast expanse of northern Australia.

Research infrastructure cuts would hit the Top End hard

The NCRIS-funded Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network (TERN) benefits pastoralists, business, tourism and Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory. Cutting it will hurt them all.
Facilities like the Australian Synchrotron are relied upon by scientists across the country, and could shut down if research infrastructure funding is withheld by the government. Sandra Morrow

Research infrastructure cuts harm science, the economy and the nation

Cutting vital research infrastructure funding because the higher education reforms are stuck in the Senate could end up costing the country dearly.
Education minister Christopher Pyne has maintained that the higher education reforms must be passed in order for science infrastructure funding to be released. AAP/Lukas Coch

Science infrastructure funding is being held hostage by government

Leading scientists warn that research facilities may close and jobs will be lost if the government doesn't free up promised science funding.
The Murchison Widefiled Array might not look like traditional infrastructure, but it’s just as essential to scientific research. Natasha Hurley-Walker/Wikimedia

Brian Schmidt: why funding science infrastructure is essential

The government is holding crucial science infrastructure funding hostage until its higher education reforms are passed by the senate.

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