It’s with a sense of excitement that I’m writing my first column as Chief Operations Officer for the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes. It’s hard to believe that April is already upon us. So much has been happening over the past few months. And there’s plenty more to come, in particular our Centre launch celebration on April 10 at UNSW. I hope to see as many people there as can make it.
By the time you read this update the Centre’s brand new website should be live at www.climateextremes.org.au. Initially it will profile our research, our staff and students and all the latest news, accomplishments and publications that are already appearing at an impressive rate for the Centre while still in its infancy. In time more features will be added, including a password protected part of the site, which will replace Clever as the Centre’s reporting database and repository of research-related activity that goes back to the Australian Research Council each year. Stand by for more information on that. In the meantime, please keep us up to date on all your publications, travel, collaboration and outreach activities via filemaker.ccrc.unsw.edu.au, or speak to admin staff at your nodes.
From the outset of CLEX we have been committed to incorporating the knowledge and understanding we gained from seven years of ARCCSS in our efforts to make the new Centre a truly exceptional research environment. We’re also aware that the Australian Research Council is raising the bar in terms of expectations for how Centres of Excellence function as a cohesive entity across multiple institutions and the measures in place around researcher development, outreach, infrastructure and diversity and inclusion. Fortunately, we have strategies in place to address all these aspects of Centre life!
Melissa Hart is leading the way on the national Centre of Excellence landscape with her innovative and holistic program-level approach to researcher development across a range of scientific, technical and professional spheres. The Early Career Researcher committee also provides a forum for new ideas and suggestions to emerge.
We’ve also set up three additional committees.
- Our Outreach Committee focuses on the pathways to impact of our science to ensure it doesn’t ‘just’ sit on the figurative shelf of academic publishing.
- Our Infrastructure Committee ensures that the Centre has the right tools and resources are in place to underpin and support our modelling infrastructure.
- Thirdly the Diversity and Culture Committee is working on initiatives to ensure the centre is a welcoming place for all, especially those from traditionally under-represented groups in STEM disciplines.
You’ll be hearing lots more from these committees as the year progresses.