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Australian Laureate Fellowships at the forefront of Australian research 

Australian Laureate Fellowships at the forefront of Australian research 

ARC Media Releases and News
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 7 July 2021 

Australian Laureate Fellowships at the forefront of Australian research 

Seventeen outstanding new Australian Laureate Fellows will receive a total of $53.7 million in funding from the Australian Research Council (ARC) to conduct ground-breaking, internationally competitive research. 

ARC Chief Executive Officer, Professor Sue Thomas, welcomed today’s announcement by Minister for Education and Youth Alan Tudge of the successful 2021 Australian Laureate Fellows awarded through the ARC Australian Laureate Fellowships scheme. 

“These prestigious fellowships, highly coveted in the Australian research sector, provide support to some of our best and brightest researchers to focus on important areas of research,” said Professor Thomas. 

“Australian Laureate Fellows also perform a vital role in developing and mentoring the next generation of Australian researchers.  

“Two Australian Laureate Fellows are provided with extra funding to undertake an ambassadorial role to promote and support women researchers. 

“The 2021 Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellowship for the humanities, arts and social science disciplines is awarded to Professor Sundhya Pahuja from The University of Melbourne; and the 2021 Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship in science and technology is awarded to Professor Yun Liu from The Australian National University. 

“These two exceptional female researchers have demonstrated their capacity to undertake innovative research and build Australia’s research capacity, by promoting women in research and encouraging them to enter and establish research careers in Australia.  

“I extend congratulations to all of the world-class Fellows announced today as they embark on their Australian Laureate Fellowships.” 

A full list of all 17 successful fellows is below, and biographies for each fellow is available on the ARC website

2021 Australian Laureate Fellows 

  • Professor Matthew Barnett – Deakin University – to discover new paradigms in alloy science to promote a circular economy and benefit Australia’s metal fabrication and scrap metal sectors
  • Professor Axel Bruns – Queensland University of Technology – to develop an analytical framework to assess the impacts of partisanship and polarisation in online public debate. 
  • Professor Helen Byrne - The University of Sydney – to unlock the potential of mathematical biology creating a blueprint for future research in advanced mathematics. 
  • Professor Kishan Dholakia – The University of Adelaide – to transform wide field optical imaging through new ‘intelligent’ microscopes better able to capture 3D images.
  • Professor Jeffery Errington – The University of Sydney – to address knowledge gaps about L-form bacteria – bacteria that are a source of antibiotic resistance.
  • Professor Sharon Friel – The Australian National University – to create new knowledge and governance frameworks for Planetary Health Equity, a new field of public health that aims to achieve global health equity.
  • Professor Kliti Grice – Curtin University – to research the planet’s history by looking at the molecular record in preserved fossils. 
  • Professor Zaiping Guo – University of Wollongong – to design the next generation of batteries for use in portable devices, electric vehicles and smart power grids. 
  • Professor Dayong Jin – University of Technology Sydney – to find a solution to bottlenecks in upconversion nanotechnology that will aid in producing new knowledge for analytical instruments and biomedical imaging. 
  • Professor Yun Liu (Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellow) – The Australian National University – to build new nanoscale-interactions to improve future functional materials. 
  • Professor Dena Lyras – Monash University – to investigate how bacteria adapts and functions in the gut ecosystem and providing insights into gut diseases and antibiotic resistance. 
  • Professor Alexander McBratney – The University of Sydney – to deliver a soil monitoring, assessment and restoration system to secure the health of Australia’s soil. 
  • Professor Naomi McClure-Griffiths – The Australian National University – to reveal how gas and magnetic fields interact to influence the evolution of galaxies. 
  • Professor Michael Milford – Queensland University of Technology – to develop the next generation of GPS systems to reduce Australia’s reliance on GPS satellites owned by other countries. 
  • Professor Sundhya Pahuja (Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellow) – The University of Melbourne – to establish Australia as a world leader and to better understand international law for the purpose of holding global corporations to democratic standards and legal accountability.  
  • Professor Robert Parton – The University of Queensland – to deliver new knowledge on how nanoparticles pass from the bloodstream to in vivo delivery, increasing our understanding of cell biology. 
  • Professor Andrew White – The University of Queensland – to create energy efficient artificial intelligence using quantum technologies. 


Media contact: 
ARC Stakeholder Relations 
0412 623 056 or 

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