Three Griffith University researchers, each tackling diverse global issues, have been announced as Australian Research Council Future Fellows.
The projects form part of $38.6 million worth of national funding announced today by Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham at Griffith University in South Bank.
- Dr Fiona Barlow, from the School of Applied Psychology, has been awarded $802,615 for her project on how racism is perpetuated and how it can be contained.
- Dr Mathieu Duval, from partner institute CENIEH in Spain, will work through Griffith for his $692,015 project on tracing the Mediterranean history of early humans.
- Dr Hui Feng, from the Griffith Asia Institute, will examine the internationalisation of China’s currency and how it impacts on Australia in his $649,501 project.
Griffith Vice Chancellor Professor Ian O’Connor said the University has been home to 33 research fellows to date and is pleased to welcome this latest cohort.
“We are delighted with this announcement and with the ongoing commitment to providing opportunities to conduct research in areas of critical national importance.”
“I’m confident this research will deliver great things for the country,” Professor O’Connor said.
During the announcement, Senator Birmingham spoke of aspiring to a shift from “mines to minds” while reflecting on the Federal Government’s Innovation Agenda.
He said the Future Fellows will help the nation innovate, invent and apply new ideas across key research areas.
“To be an innovative nation we must support our outstanding researchers to ensure we retain a strong research workforce for many years to come.”
“These 50 Fellows will build on the nation’s innovation efforts and deliver research outcomes that will improve the lives of everyday Australians,” Minister Birmingham said.
Dr Barlow, who spoke at the formal announcement, said her research is looking for new solutions to an old problem.
Her submission brought to light the harmful effects of the pervasive issue of racism, which costs Australia an estimated $46.4 billion each year.
“This project aims to combat racism by ascertaining how it is maintained within a multicultural society, and how its damaging consequences can be diminished.”
Dr Duval said his research would help determine when hominins reached the edge of the Mediterranean Sea.
“The project will make a significant contribution to our understanding of early human evolution in the Mediterranean as well as providing thoroughly tested dating methods for Early Pleistocene sites,” he said.
“This cutting-edge research will give Australia a prominent presence in Mediterranean Palaeolithic archaeology.”
Dr Feng said China’s currency stands at the heart of its economic and financial strategies.
“By examining the internationalisation of China’s currency, this project will enhance Australia’s capacity to respond to the rise of China and its implications, and in particular to interpret financial stability and developments in China,” he said.
“With better understanding of China’s currency strategy, this project will produce high impact policy suggestions that will enable a more informed and targeted approach in exerting influence on the future evolution of the international monetary system.”
The Future Fellowships scheme is an integral part of the Australian Research Council’s Discovery Programme, which supports high quality research essential to Australia’s innovation system for the development of new ideas, job creation, economic growth, and an enhanced quality of life in Australia.