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Prime Minister has prizes for our best scientists

The search is on again.

Each year the Federal Government honours Australia’s best scientists, innovators, and science teachers through the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science.

The call has gone out for nominations for this year’s humble science heroes, promising early-career researchers, media-shy innovators, and modest teachers who deserve to have their work recognised on the national stage.

This is what they’re looking for:

·         heroes of Australian science who have made a significant contribution to the advancement of knowledge through science — people like Rick Shine, Graham Farquhar and Ingrid Scheffer:

·         exceptional innovators from both industry and research who have translated scientific knowledge into substantial commercial impact — like Michael Aitken, Colin Hall, Graeme Jameson, John O’Sullivan and Ian Frazer:

·         early to mid-career scientists whose research is already making, and will continue to have, an impact on our lives — like Kerrie Wilson, Jane Elith, Ryan Lister, Andrea Morello, Angela Moles, Matthew Hill and Tanya Monro: and

·         science teachers—primary and secondary — like Suzy Urbaniak, Ken Silburn, Richard Johnson and Rebecca Johnson, who are inspiring the next generation with a love of science and exploration.

The prize recipients will receive national recognition and meet leaders in science, industry, education and government at the prize dinner in the Great Hall of Parliament House, Canberra.

The prizes are:

·         $250 000 Prime Minister’s Prize for Science;

·         $250 000 Prime Minister’s Prize for Innovation;

·         $50 000 Prize for New Innovators;

·         $50 000 Frank Fenner Prize for Life Scientist of the Year;

·         $50 000 Malcolm McIntosh Prize for Physical Scientist of the Year;

·         Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Primary Schools ($50 000 shared between the recipient and their school); and

·         Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Secondary Schools ($50 000 shared between the recipient and their school).

Nominations close at 5.00 pm Canberra time, Wednesday 12 April 2017.

It’s simple to nominate in the first (shortlisting) stage, with an online form that requires:

·         details of the nominator, nominee(s), two supporters;

·         for the five science prizes: three external referees (two of whom must be based overseas);

·         an achievement summary of no more than 1 000 words;

·         a two-page curriculum vitae;

·         proof of Australian citizenship or permanent residency; and

·         for the early to mid-career awards: evidence that their research career spans no more than 10 years (or full time equivalent) from completion of their highest relevant tertiary qualification.

If a nomination is shortlisted, further material will be required in the final stage.

For eligibility, selection criteria, nomination guidelines and forms, visit: www.business.gov.au/scienceprizes or contact 13 28 46

For more examples of past recipients, visit: www.science.gov.au/pmscienceprizes

Chris Johnson

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