From The Editor

 “Today, around 7,000 PhD students graduate each year, with more than half in science, technology, engineering and maths…..In 2014, however, the success rate for most Australian government funded research grants hit a 30-year low of 15%, with another drop predicted for 2015.”

This quote is from a16 February 2015 article in The Conversation, Seven myths about scientists debunked, which is an eye opener on the plight of scientific research in Australia (and the potential impact on Australia’s economic growth.)  See below, Let’s Hear It For The Researchers.

“a mathematical filter that can detect certain patterns (in)a citation network, ultimately identifying people who spurred innovation”

Talk about The Imitation Game! Two mathematicians “crunching numbers” have come up with a way of identifying which innovative research projects will succeed. Their formula was developed in the field of developmental biology but can be used for all areas of research, particularly interdisciplinary research. See below a reprint of a February 14, 2015 ScienceDaily article , Formula for predicting innovation. (Coincidentally, a  February 26 2015 IDG blog Wanted: A model for startup success that doesn’t rely on alchemy appears to need just such a formula.)

 “We have made appalling progress over the last two decades; each year we train and then lose huge numbers of women from Australian science…. We are now ready to take the next big steps to bring about real change ”.

The above quote is from the Science in Gender Equity (SAGE) Forum on their new gender equity trial, see below, Women in Leadership:  More Facts and Misconceptions.

Current Issue

Articles in the current Issue cover:

Let’s Hear It For The Researchers

“almost 44% of employers continue to experience difficulties recruiting STEM qualified technicians and trade workers. The main barriers are a lack of qualifications relevant to the business (36%) and a lack of employability skills and workplace experience (34%).”

Formula for predicting innovation

“By analyzing the interactions among authors of scientific papers, the mathematical model serves as a kind of ‘formula for innovation’,”   

Women in Leadership:  More Facts and Misconceptions.

“When women are included on executive committees, average return on equity improves by 47% and average earnings before interest and tax improve by 55%”


Ted Smillie

QESP Chairman