13 June 2022

Trio of Canberra's top scientists elected to Australian Academy of Science

| Aiden Rothnie
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Professor Naomi McClure-Griffiths

Professor Naomi McClure-Griffiths is one of three Canberrans recently elected to the Australian Academy of Science. Photo: Supplied.

Three of Canberra’s best and brightest have recently been elected to the Australian Academy of Science and will join more than 20 other newly elected fellows.

Professors Naomi McClure-Griffiths and Ute Roessner from the Australian National University (ANU) and Professor Tom Calma from the University of Canberra have become newly elected fellows of the academy.

Prof. McClure-Griffiths has been working in the field of astro physics for the past 20 years to understand how our galaxy and the many surrounding it have formed.

A plant scientist and biochemist, Prof. Roessner has recently been working to reduce nitrogen loss in fertilisers and increase nitrogen uptake in plants and crops.

Her work can help reduce the amount of greenhouse gases we produce and increase the growth of plants and crops.

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Both said being elected was a great honour.

“They say that only the best of the best scientists get elected to be a part of the Academy of Science, so this is an incredible honour,” Prof. McClure-Griffiths said.

“It makes you feel very honoured to know you’re a part of this huge thing now.”

Prof. Roessner said she was eager to join forces with other elected members.

“It’s always exciting to hear from someone else, I’m really looking forward to collaborating and working with the people there.”

Both were excited by the prospect of working with the academy and helping to promote science to new people.

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They agreed it provided integral information for everyone – from the government to the greater community.

UC Chancellor Professor Tom Calma is the first Indigenous fellow to be elected to the Australian Academy of Science.

Prof. Calma has been a champion of Indigenous health education and more recently a chief investigator for a research initiative on the management of scabies among Indigenous children.

The election of an indigenous fellow isn’t the only first for the Academy of Science. The election of these new fellows brings the male/female gender split to exactly 50/50 for the first time.

The academy has been aiming to improve its diversity to better reflect Australia’s science community.

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