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Fostering Australian Scientific Research


17 June 2013 - THE HON. TONY ABBOTT MHR, LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION & MRS SOPHIE MIRABELLA MHR, SHADOW MINISTER FOR INNOVATION, INDUSTRY AND SCIENCE 

Cutting red tape, protecting medical research funding and providing policy certainty are essential parts of the Coalition’s commitment to foster science and research in Australia.
It is through science and research that Australia can build a long-term advantage for Australian products, innovation and competitiveness.

Today we met with some of Australia’s leading scientists and leaders from national research institutions, including Nobel Laureate Professor Brian Schmidt. These eminent Australians have come to Parliament House seeking a better path forward for science and research. They are not seeking ad hoc policies or money. What they want is long-term policy stability that supports their work and fosters research and development.

The Coalition will provide the long-term, stable policies and vision that our nation’s scientists and researchers need to excel in their work. We will cut the red tape that accompanies government research programmes, as well as providing our scientists and researchers with the certainty to plan.

If elected, a Coalition government will support science and research by:
 protecting medical research funding, an area where Australia’s talented scientists give us such a comparative advantage;
 providing $2 million to complete the Primary Connections science education programme, which is aimed at stimulating science education and learning throughout primary schools;
 promoting more learning, initiative and collaboration with our regional neighbours through a two way Colombo Plan that will see our best and brightest learn in the Asia-Pacific region and that will bring region’s best and brightest to Australia;
 providing $35 million to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s Clinical Trial Network for type 1 diabetes research;
 creating greater capacity for international research collaboration by aiming for 40 per cent of students to complete high school studying a foreign language;
 cutting $1 billion in red tape annually so that businesses and research centres have more resources to spend on research and spend less time filling in paperwork; and
 providing policy certainty with no surprises and no excuses so that scientists and researchers aren’t blindsided with changes to programmes and funding.

The Coalition understands that science and research are the foundation for Australia’s future advancement in manufacturing, innovation and in a range of industries from pharmaceuticals to telecommunications.

We will provide the long-term policy stability necessary for our scientists and researchers to get on with their valuable work.