About Jesse Shore

Jesse Shore is passionate about engaging the community with science and in looking for ways to weave together the arts and sciences. He has been developing science based exhibitions and events since 1984, and was President of the Australian Science Communicators from 2010-2012. His business, Prismatic Sciences, produced five travelling exhibitions for the Royal Australian Chemical Institute for the 2011 International Year of Chemistry and he manages the ongoing national tour. He previously worked at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney as an exhibition project leader and Senior Curator of sciences. While at the museum he was one of the founders of the Ultimo Science Festival, a major National Science Week activity. He is currently collaborating with an artist to create artworks which have a science slant.

The ASC and Inspiring Australia: working with the national strategy for engagement with the sciences

The Australian Science Communicators continues to be an active partner in the Inspiring Australia strategy. We are a member of the Science Sector Group, which provides national leadership and coherent action among non-government science sector organisations. This group aims to enable collaboration, information sharing and, where appropriate, coordinated approaches to issues around science. An important objective is to improve the efficiency, effectiveness, quantity and quality of Australian public science engagement.

Australia aspires to be an inventive society with a technologically skilled workforce, a scientifically literate community and scientifically well informed decision makers. The Inspiring Australia strategy aims to build a strong, open relationship between science and society, underpinned by effective communication of science and its uses.

The ASC shares many of the underlying aims of Inspiring Australia. We view that our involvement in several of Inspiring Australia’s activities will add value to the efforts of both groups.

Inspiring Australia

Apply for new position: General Manager of the Australian Science Communicators


You are invited to express your interest in appointment to the newly-created part-time position of General Manager of the Australian Science Communicators (ASC).

Location: anywhere in Australia with broadband internet access. Committee meetings held via Skype.

The ASC is a professional body representing and supporting some 500 science communicators working in a wide range of roles. The ASC organises a variety of social and professional development events to allow its members to both mingle and learn, maintains a website, email lists for posting and a monthly electronic newsletter and stages National Conferences. The ASC enjoys a high profile in the science communication community and a strong relationship with relevant programs of the Commonwealth Government.

The General Manager will be responsible for the external relations of the ASC, including management of externally funded projects (such as those linked to the Inspiring Australia initiative), liaison with Government and with organisations that share its objectives, and delivery of National Conferences. The General Manager will report directly to the President of the ASC, and will work in parallel with the already-appointed Executive Officer who is responsible for internal administration and member value.

The appointment will be for six (6) months in the first instance but can be renewed subject to satisfactory performance. Remuneration will be calculated on the basis of one day’s work per week as a stipend but there will be opportunities for additional remuneration based on performance in certain areas.

Skills and Experience


·        Substantial experience in science communication, including awareness of the nature and activities of the Australian science communication community.

·        Verbal and written communication skills of a high order

·        Demonstrated success in the initiation, marketing and delivery of projects and collaborations

·        Strong administrative, relationship management and negotiation skills.


·        Experience in interaction with Government agencies.

·        Experience in the staging of conferences.


·        Manage a range of externally-directed projects intended to raise the profile and impact of the ASC in the science communication and wider communities.

·        Secure of additional revenue for the ASC through sponsorship or by the initiation of new externally-funded projects.

·        Build and sustain relationships with other relevant organisations, including Government.

·        Lead the staging of National Conferences.

·        Report regularly or as required to the President and the National Executive on progress and initiatives.

·        Attend meetings of the National Council and National Executive.

·        Work cooperatively with the Executive Officer.


Over the six month contract the remuneration will be $300 per week.

This is equivalent to:

Gross annual base salary:


Superannuation (9.25%):





Applications for appointment to this position, addressing all criteria and accompanied by a CV and references, must be received by the Executive Officer, Kali Madden, office@asc.asn.au, by 28 June 2013. The employment contract which contains the complete list of duties, details of remuneration and performance bonus is available on request from Kali. It is anticipated that the appointment will commence in late July 2013.

Enquiries contact

Will Grant, ASC Vice President, will.grant@anu.edu.au, may be contacted to discuss the position. Email enquiries are preferred for an initial enquiry.

Inspiring Australia update: Science communication summit, 6-7 June 2013 at UNSW

Want to add your two cents to science communication? Inspiring Australia has announced a two day meeting where everyone’s contributions can add up to a big deposit for Australia’s science communication future.

The BIG science communication summit – pathways to inspiring Australia

Inspiring Australia, TechNyou and ScienceRewired are excited to announce a 2-day hands-on summit to map out the next challenges for science communications in Australia and to collaboratively address best-practice solutions.

Bringing the country’s leading science communicators, innovators, science journalists, decision makers and educators together, the summit is an opportunity for participants to individually and collectively compare, shape and influence their science communications directions and activities.

Register your interest to attend sciencerewired.org/summit


6th & 7th June
University of New South Wales
Scientia Conference and Events Centre

Produced in partnership with

Inspiring Australia update: Poo Power! is ready to light the world

The range of projects funded by Inspiring Australia’s Unlocking Australia’s Potential program is breathtaking, with a spread across animal, vegetable and mineral topics. Here’s news about one project that combines at least two of the three.





While cleaning up after your dog, have you ever thought, ‘What a waste of perfectly good dog waste!’? Probably not, but Duncan Chew has.

Self-described ‘dog poo entrepreneur’ Duncan Chew was among the recipients of an Inspiring Australia grant in 2012. His project, Poo Power!, uses science to address the issues of how can our cities and communities live more sustainably, and further what do we do with the 1,350 tonnes of dog waste produced in Australia annually?

The answer is to light the world (or at least urban parks of Melbourne) with Poo Power! The project will see a series of biogas generators turn dog waste into energy for lighting up Melbourne parks, at the same time as engaging audiences on the issue of ‘what is waste?’, and the potential opportunities posed by reassessing waste management practices.

So, as part of the Sustainable Living Festival, Duncan Chew and Melbourne filmmaker James Boldiston will be presenting on the project and its various arms at noon on Saturday 16 February 2013 in ‘The Big Tent’ at Federation Square.

And as part of the wider State of Sustainability program, a second Poo Power! event will be held at Village Rivoli Cinemas on Thursday 21 February 2013 at 6:30pm, where James Boldiston’s humorous documentary, Dog Poo: The Truth at Last, will receive its Melbourne premiere.

Full event details and ticketing are available at www.poopower.com.au . For more information about Poo Power! or for media requests, contact the team at info@poopower.com.au .

This Inspiring Australia initiative is supported by the Australian Government through the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education in partnership with the Yarra Energy Foundation.

Inspiring Australia update: Nominations Open for 2013 Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science

The 2012 awards event for the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science was outstanding. A number of ASC members are involved with the Prizes and it would be good to hear their views on what the program means to them. Here’s the first announcement from Inspiring Australia about the 2013 prizes.

Inspiring Australia is pleased to announce that first-stage nominations for the 2013 Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science are now open.

The Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science is a core component of the Inspiring Australia program designed to inspire a sense of national pride by promoting activities that recognise and reward the achievements and successes of Australians in the science and science teaching.

The five prizes are:

  • The Prime Minister’s Prize for Science (A$300,000);
  • The Science Minister’s Prize for Life Scientist of the Year (A$50,000);
  • The Malcolm McIntosh Prize for Physical Scientist of the Year (A$50,000);
  • The Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Primary Schools; (A$50,000); and
  • The Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Secondary Schools (A$50,000).

In addition to the prize monies, each recipient will also receive an award certificate and a medallion with lapel pin, presented at a black-tie dinner in the Great Hall of Parliament House.

Updates to Selection and Nomination Guidelines

For 2013, a number of updates of the selection and nomination guidelines have taken effect, to the effect that:

  • Past recipients of the Malcolm McIntosh and Science Minister’s Prizes are eligible to be nominated and considered for Prime Minister’s Prize for Science award, subject to eligibility criteria being met.
  • For the Malcolm McIntosh and Science Minister’s Prizes, nominees must have achieved outstanding research results within a full-time equivalent research career of ten years, including research conducted as part of studies for a Master’s degree or PhD.
  • In recognition for the schools associated with the winning science teachers, the A$50,000 cash component of the Science Teaching Prizes will be share equally between the prize recipient and the school in which the prize recipient was teaching at the time of nomination.  The school’s share of the monies must be used to finance a project or projects that will improve the school’s capacity to teach science.
  • Nominations for all five Prizes will be conducted in two stages, a first stage simplified submission with those shortlisted nominees then invited to submit a detailed nomination as part of the second stage.

Nominations for the 2013 Prizes close 14 March. See http://www.innovation.gov.au/scienceprizes or email pmprize@innovation.gov.au for further details.


Inspiring Australia update: stirring up interest in engineering

Australia needs engineers but where will they come from? Inspiring Australia is looking for answers by funding programs which aim to attract the interest of Australian students. Here is an update about two of these programs.



It is well-known that Australia is experiencing a skill shortage in relation to engineers, and that Australian industry, and the economy as a whole, are and will continue to be affected by this shortage unless the trend is reversed. Establishing pathways to tertiary careers in engineering is fundamental in addressing the skills shortage.

Inspiring Australia, the national strategy for science engagement, is playing a part in addressing this issue through awarding $710 000 through its Unlocking Australia’s Potential grants for projects working to promote engineering as a career path. With partnering organisations contributing a similar amount, the projects are providing over $1.4 million dollars towards encouraging engagement with engineering science.

Two examples of the Inspiring Australia-funded engineering projects include Science Rocks on the Road and Robogals:

  • Science Rocks on the Road is an outreach project which provides hands-on demonstrations and activities to improve awareness, understanding and interest in mining-related science. The project has been developed, with assistance from educators and input from volunteers across all science disciplines, and conducted workshops and events focusing on engaging school students in science.
  • Robogals conducts robotics workshops in high schools with the aim of promoting engineering careers, particularly to female students. The activities engage students in a range of engineering topics in a fun and creative way. Additionally the workshops include a brief introduction to the different types of engineering, and how engineers impact our daily lives.

Through these and other projects, Inspiring Australia is working towards not only to address one of the key issues of the Australian economy, but at the same time is ensuring that even those who choose not to pursue a career in engineering have a level of appreciation and understanding of the contribution science makes to the Australian economy and to everyday life.

This update from Inspiring Australia is initiative is supported by the Australian Government through the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education in partnership with the Australian Science Communicators.


ASC branch events 2012

The ASC branches were again very active in 2012, holding 42 events across Australia. Members were able to attend all events for free or at substantial discounts.

The pdf (link below) has information about each of these events and provides a bank of ideas for those of you wanting to organise an event.

Jesse Shore

ASC branch events 2012, for posting

Inspiring Australia Update: Redmap Australia launches 13 December 2012

Redmap started as a citizen fishers and divers science driven project in 2009 to map the distribution of fish species, and to track any changes, in the waters around Tasmania. Started by the University of Tasmania, the web-based project and has grown quickly. With support from Inspiring Australia and many new partners it has now has launched itself Australia-wide. The new states haven’t recorded sightings yet but you can explore the website for images of species being sought in each region.

I wonder how many ASC members are fishers and divers and whether they have comments about this or related projects.

The media release from the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS) via Inspiring Australia follows:



With today’s launch of the Redmap Australia website, and support from ‘Inspiring Australia’, the community is being asked to be on the lookout for unusual occurrences of species in the seas around Australia.

Redmap encourages fishers and divers to report sightings and upload photos of marine life that aren’t usually found at their local fishing, diving and swimming spots.  These community sightings will help reveal whether fish are ‘shifting their range’ in search of cooler waters, as seas become warmer with a changing climate.

The website, also known as the ‘Range Extension Database and Mapping’ project, started in Tasmania in 2009.  Already Tasmanian fishers and divers have logged hundreds of unusual sightings including eastern rock lobster, southern Maori wrasse and King George whiting, all spotted further south than their usual home turf.

Redmap Australia takes this concept national, with a large collaborative project led by the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS) at the University of Tasmania.  Considering some 3-4 million Australians go fishing or diving at least once a year, Redmap will tap into the observations of potentially thousands of ‘citizen scientists’.

“Redmap is the ultimate in crowd sourcing,” said Redmap founder Dr Gretta Pecl, a senior marine scientist from the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS) at the University of Tasmania. “It taps into the knowledge – and eyes – of thousands of fishers, divers and swimmers to track changes in fish distributions in Australia’s vast coastal waters.”

Redmap is interested in reports of any marine life deemed uncommon along your particular stretch of the coast; and not just fish but also turtles, rays, lobsters, corals, seaweeds, urchins and prawns.  Photos are reviewed by a network of marine scientists around the country to verify the species identity and ensure high-quality data. Redmap aims to become a continental-scale monitoring program along Australia’s vast coastline to help track marine range shifts; but also to engage Australians with marine issues using their own data.

“We hope to create a network of fishers and divers that are driven to finding out how fish are impacted by changing conditions, like ocean warming, by contributing to this knowledge,” said Dr Pecl.

The Redmap website encourages members to share photos and anecdotes.  It also has information and news on fishing, diving and the marine environment.  Everyone can comment on the latest sightings of critters spotted away from their usual marine postcode and a smart phone application will be up and running in 2013 to make logging an unusual fish that much easier.

Redmap supports the Australian Government’s Inspiring Australia strategy, which aims to boost science literacy and teach the value of science in caring for our environment.  For marine ecosystems, this encourages the healthy use of our seas so we may all continue to enjoy the marine environment and marine recreational activities.

Each Redmap sighting is a piece in a puzzle that over time will reveal to the community, scientists and industry which species or regions may be experiencing greater changes in marine distributions. And the sooner Australian fishers, divers and the public help gather this information, the better.  Some seas along the coast of Australia are warming at 3 to 4 times the global average.  Turning up the heat tends to stress marine ecosystems and species, and can impact fish growth, reproduction and behaviour.

Associate Professor Natalie Moltschaniwskyj is a marine ecologist in the School of Environmental & Life Sciences at the University of Newcastle and is the coordinator of Redmap NSW.

“We’re predicting a mixed reaction to warming seas,” Associate Professor Moltschaniwskyj said. “While some species may adapt to the balmy new conditions, others will shift into new areas in search of their preferred marine climate or may dissappear from an area.”

Already anecdotal evidence from fishers and divers have pointed to some range shifts.  Associate Professor Moltschaniwskyj said they’re hearing about more tropical fish venturing into Sydney like damsel fish and angelfish species. Her team will track some 60 species through the Redmap project including butterfly fish, painted crayfish and tropical wrasses.

“Gathering many sightings over time will show if these fish are here to stay, one-off visitors or just seasonal migrants,” she said.

Professor Colin Buxton, Director of the IMAS Fisheries, Aquaculture and Coasts Centre, said Redmap was a wonderful example of how the community and scientists can work together to understand how climate change is affecting our oceans and to help manage this uncertain future.

“This information will allow some communities to take advantage of new fish arrivals and will help others  minimise risks such as the introduction of pest species for those fisheries or regions that may be more impacted by species on the move,” Professor Buxton said.

All Australians can get involved by becoming a Redmap member, signing up for our quarterly newsletter, liking us on Facebook, and logging unusual marine animals at www.redmap.org.au.

Who is Redmap Australia?

Redmap is a large collaborative project led by the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS) at the University of Tasmania, and involves the University of Newscastle, James Cook University, Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA), Museum Victoria, Department of Fisheries Western Australia, the University of Adelaide and the South East Australia Program (SEAP).  The expansion of Redmap nationally was made possible with generous funding from an Australian Government Inspiring Australia grant, the Australian National Data Service (ANDS) and the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) . Redmap also receives support from Mures Tasmania and many fishing, diving and community groups around the country.

If you have any further questions or require an interview, please contact:

Dr Gretta Pecl, Redmap Australia’s principal investigator, Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS) at the University of Tasmania on 0408 626 792 or email gretta.pecl@utas.edu.au

If you would like information about Redmap in your region, including an interview, please contact:

Redmap NSW
Associate Prof Natalie Moltschaniwskyj, marine biologist, School of Environmental & Life Sciences at the University of Newcastle, on 0417 509 463 or email: Natalie.Moltschaniwskyj@newcastle.edu.au

Redmap QLD
Martha Brians, Research Officer at tropWATER, School of Marine & Tropical Biology, James Cook University
on (07) 4781 5739 or 0447662570 or email: martha.brians@jcu.edu.au

Redmap SA
Keith Rowling, Senior Research Officer, PIRSA Fisheries and Aquaculture on 0437 675 573 or email: Keith.Rowling@sa.gov.au

Redmap TAS
Dr Gretta Pecl, Redmap Australia’s Principal Investigator, Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS) at the University of Tasmania on 0408 626 792 or email: gretta.pecl@utas.edu.au

Redmap VIC (not available until December 17)
Dianne Bray, Museum Victoria’s Fish Collection Manager on (03) 8341 7448 or email dbray@museum.vic.gov.au

Redmap WA
Dr Gary Jackson, Principal Research Scientist, WA Fisheries and Marine Research Laboratories on (08) 9203 0191 or email Gary.Jackson@fish.wa.gov.au

This update from Inspiring Australia is initiative is supported by the Australian Government through the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education in partnership with the Australian Science Communicators.


ASC constitution – includes amendments up to 27 November 2012

The 2012 AGM voted in favour of the proposed amendment to the Constitution regarding a detail of Corporate membership. The updated Constitution showing all the changes since it was adopted in 2003  can be viewed in this link.

Constitution amended 2006, 07, 08, 10, 11, 12, with wording as of 27 Nov 2012

Jesse Shore

2012 AGM – summary of outcomes

Dear ASC members,

The 2012 AGM, held on 27 November, elected Dr Rod Lamberts, of CPAS at ANU, as the next President of the ASC. I congratulate Rod on taking over the reins of our Association and I thank Associate Professor Nancy Longnecker, of UWA, for also nominating for the position. The membership had two excellent experienced people to choose between and it was a tight election result.

The AGM passed the proposed amendment to the Constitution. From today, Corporate Members can nominate more than ten staff to their membership at a pro-rata rate. They still retain the option to take out multiple Corporate Memberships.

There was useful points raised about the Association’s finances, the running of the next conference, and the details of the General Manager’s position. Informed by these discussions, the meeting authorised the National Council to consider raising the annual membership fee (within a reasonable amount) to cover anticipated increases in running costs.

The meeting also directed the National Council to further develop the draft professional code of ethics, to have it mention global responsibilities, and for the final version to be voted on at a General Meeting during the year.

It was good to see a large numbers of members taking part in the AGM. We had more than 20 members attend the meeting and around 40 proxies.

A lot of discussion was packed into the 80 minutes of the meeting (including the video cross to Guy Nolch to get a word from our Unsung Hero winner). The official matters was followed by a science trivia contest, run by David Ellyard and ably assisted by Robbie Mitchell, the head of the SE-Qld branch. The only thing I’ll add about this fast paced, hotly competed event is that the team which included Rod, Sarah Lau (our National Secretary) and me did not win. So much for Executive clout.

The meeting marked several changes in the National Council and National Executive teams:
New President – Rod Lamberts
New immediate past-president – Jesse Shore
New Treasurer – Peter Wheeler

We thank Tim Thwaites, who now steps down as the past-president, David Ellyard, who retires after 11 years as Treasurer, and Rob Morrison, who has been a great contributor for years as Vice-President.

I thank Sarah Lau for her work as National Secretary and Claire Harris for her contribution to both national committees. Both Sarah and Claire may continue in their roles pending decisions by the new President and incoming National Council on various positions.

I also thank James Hutson, our webmaster for more than four years, who stepped down from his busy post in November. We are in the process of seeking a new webmaster.

Kali Madden and Sally Miles continue as Executive Officer and Editor of Scope respectively. We are fortunate to have such energetic, committed and effective people in these roles.

I’ll still be involved on the National Committees, have some projects to wrap up, and will make the odd squeak via cyberspace, but otherwise Rod now shoulders the brunt of communicating with the ‘tribe’.

It’s been an interesting three years.

All the best,
Jesse Shore