The Australian Academy of Science champions diversity in STEM

The Australian Academy of Science is an independent authority of scientific advice, promoting international collaboration and public engagement. With its recent announcement of elected Fellows for 2022, it continues to champion and celebrate diversity in Australian science.

Professor Tom Calma AO, chancellor of the University of Canberra, has been elected for his 45-year contribution to Indigenous peoples’ health, education and justice. Professor Calma is the first elected Fellow who identifies as an Aboriginal person. He is a descendant of the Kungarakan and Iwaidja people, whose traditional lands are south-west of Darwin and on the Cobourg Peninsula in the Northern Territory, respectively.

The newly elected President of the Academy, Professor Chennupati Jagadish AC, is the first Australian of Indian heritage to take the reins. Professor Jagadish is a pioneering physicist, acknowledged as a world leader in the research field of semiconductor optoelectronics.

Fellows of the Australian Academy of Science are among the nation’s most distinguished scientists, elected by their peers for ground-breaking research and contributions that have had clear impact,” says Jagadish. “We reflect a diverse and inclusive science community that recognises the widest range of talents, backgrounds, perspectives and experiences, and we are united by our contribution and commitment to scientific excellence.”

Among the other newly elected fellows is Professor Naomi McClure-Griffiths, who has been recognised for advancing our understanding of our own and neighbouring galaxies, including proving the existence of a new spiral arm of the Milky Way. Professor McClure-Griffiths has helped design multiple radio telescope facilities, including CSIRO’s ASKAP, and the planned globe-spanning Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project.

This year is also the first-time that gender parity has been achieved in the annual election of Fellows.

“The Academy’s actions to improve gender diversity among our Fellowship are succeeding,” says Jagadish. “This year’s Fellows include 50% women and 50% men. This has been achieved by adopting a range of measures to improve our nomination process and increase opportunities to recognise all scientists. Our work to improve diversity among our Fellowship continues.”

They are joined by 20 other outstanding Australian science researchers, taking the Fellowship now to 590 outstanding members.

Academy of science, fellows, diversity in stem
Professor Tom Calma AO. Credit: The Australian Academy of Science

The Academy’s new Fellows for 2022 are:


Thomas Calma – Chancellor, University of Canberra

Naomi McClure-Griffiths – Astronomer, Australian National University

Ute Roessner – Plant scientist, Australian National University


Katherine Belov – Biologist, University of Sydney

Marcela Bilek – Physicist, University of Sydney

John Cannon – Pure mathematician, University of Sydney

Catherine Greenhill – Pure mathematician, UNSW Sydney

Michelle Haber – Childhood cancer scientist, UNSW Sydney

Emma Johnston – Marine ecologist, UNSW Sydney

Albert Zomaya – Computer scientist, University of Sydney


Stuart Bunn – Freshwater ecologist, Griffith University

Janice Lough – Climate scientist, Australian Institute of Marine Science

Sarah Medland – Statistical geneticist, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute

Huijun Zhao – Chemist, Griffith University


Matthew Bailes – Astrophysicist, Swinburne University of Technology

Kate Smith-Miles – Applied mathematician, University of Melbourne


Peter Høj – Vice-Chancellor, University of Adelaide

Timothy Hughes – Haematologist, South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute

Peter Langridge – Agricultural researcher, University of Adelaide

Craig Simmons – Groundwater scientist, Flinders University


Elizabeth Fulton – Ecosystem modeller, CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere


Jonathan Carapetis – Paediatric physician, Telethon Kids Institute

The newly elected Fellows of 2022 will present their work and achievements at the Science at the Shine Dome on 23 November, the Academy’s annual flagship event to celebrate and honour Australia’s most influential scientists and their achievements.

Find out more about criteria for ordinary and special election to the Academy and how to nominate a scientist for fellowship.

Academy of science, fellows, diversity in stem
The newly elected Fellows of 2022. Credit: The Australian Academy of Science

Please login to favourite this article.