Regional Science Grants set to boost innovation in NSW

The NSW Government has joined forces with the Inspiring Australia initiative and the University of Sydney to provide $40,000 for regional community groups towards science activities and events to mark National Science Week 2013 (10-18 August).

Deputy Premier and Minister for Trade and Investment Andrew Stoner said National Science Week celebrates science in everyday life.

“The best way to inspire more science activity is by supporting diverse communities to develop initiatives that are locally relevant and driven from the ground up,” Mr Stoner said.

“Our 2013 NSW Regional Science Grants will create new community partnerships that can deliver inspirational science initiatives throughout NSW during National Science Week and beyond.”

In announcing the new funding, Mr Stoner pointed to a number of successful community science initiatives already underway that others can learn from when planning their own initiatives.

“Popular events that have been held in Armidale and presented by Far Out Science include Radical Wine, a town hall event that explored the science of wine making, and Consumer Science, featuring experiments presented in local shopping malls by University of New England scientists,” he said.

“Elsewhere in NSW, the Atlas of Life in the Coastal Wilderness project brings volunteers together with professional scientists to document the biodiversity of the southern NSW coast.

“The Border Stargaze in Albury is another great example of how a partnership driven by the Astronomical Society of Albury Wodonga has gathered momentum, today attracting significant support for its annual astronomy festival from local councils, Charles Sturt University and Inspiring Australia.”

‘With a mix of debates, interactive science activities and popular night time sky tours, the Border Stargaze last year attracted Nobel Prize winner for physics, Dr Brian Schmidt, as a guest speaker.’

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Mr Stoner said there was huge value in exposing people to hands-on science experiences.

“The benefits are enormous, not just for young people who may end up pursuing careers in science, but for all of us – the more we understand the science that is all around us, the more we can engage with today’s issues,” he said.
Find out more about the 2013 NSW Regional Science Grants.