The Office of the Lead Scientist is supported by the department and is located within the Sector Development and Programs Division.
The priorities of the office are to:
- Provide high level strategic advice to assist in science and innovation policy development
- Foster links across the innovation value chain
- Identify opportunities to streamline support for the commercialisation of Victorian research
- Advocate the importance of science, technology and innovation to building the skills for Victoria's future industries.
Who is the Lead Scientist?
Leonie Walsh was appointed to the inaugural role of Victorian Lead Scientist in mid-2013. Leonie has more than 25 years of technology leadership experience in a broad range of industrial applications both locally and globally with a focus on the development and commercialisation of technology. Leonie represents Victoria on the Forum of Australian Chief Scientists, sits on the Future Industries Ministerial Advisory Council, the Science and Engineering Advisory Committee for the Environmental Protection Authority and a range of advisory committees spanning innovation, education and advanced manufacturing.
Complementary to the Lead Scientist role Leonie Walsh held the honorary role of President of the Australasian Industrial Research Group (AIRG) from 2011 to 2015, with the recent transition to Immediate Past President. In this role Leonie established international collaborations through a new World Federation of Industrial Research Associations and as a founding partner of the Australian Governments SME to Researcher collaboration (CAESIE) between Australia and the European Union.
In an honorary capacity Leonie is the President and Chairman of the Fight Cancer Foundation and is a non-Executive Director on the board of the National Bone Marrow Donor Registry.
Leonie Walsh received a Bachelor of Science and an Master of Science from Swinburne University, an Master of Business Administration (Exec) from the Australian Graduate School of Management and is a Fellow of the Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. In 2014 Leonie received an Honorary Doctorate - from Swinburne University of Technology for contributions and leadership in scientific enterprises, innovation and the community.
Read about how the Victorian Government is partnering with veski to deliver a program supporting women to pursue science careers in Victoria, including through fellowships and internships.