[ASC-list] Welcoming a new committee; a review of the Physics Decadal Plan; physics prizes; and more—Physics in March

Niall Byrne niall at scienceinpublic.com.au
Fri Mar 3 00:19:54 UTC 2017

Dear ASCers,

  *   Meet the new committee members of the Australian Institute of Physics
  *   Looking back on the Physics Decadal Plan
  *   Free, expertly-written physics texts now available online
  *   Plus physics prizes, and opportunities for physics teachers

Each month we publish a wrap-up of Australian physics news and events, sent on behalf of the Australian Institute of Physics.

Below is a taste of this month’s bulletin.

You can view the full bulletin here<http://aip.org.au/physicsinmarch2017/> and if you’d like to subscribe (you don’t have to be a member), click here.<http://scienceinpublic.us10.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=0095a098c581fd5fc98cdfba4&id=55a0d99a82>

Kind regards,


A new year, a new committee
The AIP has started off the new year with a few new members joining the executive committee.
We welcome Jodie Bradby as Vice-President and Kirrily Rule as our new secretary. They join Judith Pollard (treasurer), Olivia Samardzic (special projects—awards and prizes), Ian McArthur (registrar), Warrick Couch (past president), and myself as president.
We’re looking forward to exploring physics in Australia throughout the year and sharing it with the AIP and general physics community.
AIP Prizes

The following AIP medals and awards are open for nomination:
·         the Walter Boas Medal<http://aip.org.au/medals-awards-and-prizes/walter-boas-medal/> for excellence in physics research in the past five years
·         the Bragg Gold Medal<http://aip.org.au/medals-awards-and-prizes/bragg-medal/> for the student judged to have completed the most outstanding Australian physics PhD thesis
·         the Outstanding Service to Physics<http://aip.org.au/medals-awards-and-prizes/medal-for-outstanding-service/> award for exceptional contribution to the furtherance of physics as a discipline.

For more information, head to aip.org.au/medals-awards-and-prizes<http://aip.org.au/medals-awards-and-prizes/> or email Olivia Samardzic on olivia.samardzic at dsto.defence.gov.au<mailto:olivia.samardzic at dsto.defence.gov.au>.

Nominations close 1 June (except for the Bragg Gold medal, which closes 1 July).
Looking back on the Physics Decadal Plan

By Hans Bachor (originally published in Australian Physics)

The National Committee of Physics (NCP) of the Australian Academy of Science held a town-hall style meeting during the AIP congress in Brisbane in December. The meeting was very well attended with about 70 participants from Australia and overseas, and a lively exchange of views took place.

The audience heard from Professor David Jamison about the Physics Decadal Plan<https://www.science.org.au/supporting-science/science-sector-analysis/reports-and-publications/decadal-plan-physics-2012-2021>, which has been in place since 2011 and has helped to make systematic progress on several fronts: the importance of physics as part of STEM is now more widely recognised. This has led to a strengthening of the education programs, in particular with national programs such as Inspire Australia, Little Scientists for preschool, Primary Connections for primary schools, Science by Doing for secondary schools and accompanying mathematics programs, such as ReSolve: Mathematics by Enquiry. There is more recognition of the opportunities for young people with a science education in a diverse range of professional careers. At the same time, progress is being made in the area of equity and gender balance, in particular through the introduction of the national SAGE initiative that will improve our working conditions.

The Physics Decadal Plan has emphasised the importance of infrastructure and NCRIS, now addressed with consistent funding. More progress is required for funding international collaborations and large-scale science programs in Australia. The discussion turned to the creation of a more efficient and fair funding system: an ARC as the world’s best system, made for Australians. The discussion built on a survey of the physics community through the HoDs, conducted by the NCP in late 2016.


Niall Byrne

Creative Director
Science in Public
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niall at scienceinpublic.com.au<mailto:niall at scienceinpublic.com.au>
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