Science Meets Parliament (SMP) is Australia’s most powerful vehicle for deep engagement between the STEM sector and policymakers.
The program began with a three-day online professional development workshops, inspiring speakers, and training, including a refresher on civics, and how to engage and influence decision-makers, work with Parliamentarians and advocate for critical policy changes.
During the in-person event ‘SMP on the Hill’ which took place at Parliament House in Canberra, Phenomics Australia delegates, Professor Glenn Withers, Dr Sara Howden, Dr John Parisot, and Dr Michael Dobbie had meetings scheduled with Members of the Parliament, including Senator Hon Carol Brown, Mr Rob Mitchell MP, Senator Catryna Bilyk, and Mr Jerome Laxale MP, and they talked about the vital role of Precision Medicine research infrastructure and workforce, and the impact of the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy (NCRIS).
Delegates also attended addresses from Dr Cathy Foley, Australia’s Chief Scientist, and Prof. Brian Schmidt AC, FRS, FAA, Vice-Chancellor of the Australian National University, as well as visits to the House of Representatives and the National Press Club where they heard speeches by both the Hon Ed Husic MP, the Minister for Industry and Science of Australia, and Jaala Pulford, the newly minted chair of the MedTech and Pharma Growth Centre (MTPConnect). The day end up with the National Gala Dinner.
Phenomics Australia delegates also were able to attend the special event on the 23rd of March: Building the SABRE Biosecurity Alliance to Secure Australia’s Defence, a powerful collaboration between Science & Technology Australia and Defence where SMP delegates with expertise in biotechnology, human health, genomics, bioinformatics, synthetic biology, agriculture, advanced manufacturing and biosecurity were connected to exciting opportunities to work on Defence and National Security projects.
Defence launched the Safeguarding Australia through Biotechnology Response and Engagement (SABRE) Alliance in July 2022. SABRE seeks to bring together biotech capabilities from Australia’s universities, research institutes, manufacturers and small businesses to connect them with the needs of the Defence and national security sectors.