Victoria's Lead Scientist
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Victoria's Lead Scientist is supported by the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources and reports to Richard Bolt, the department's secretary.
The Lead Scientist works across the Victorian Government to foster linkages and identify opportunities for economic outcomes by engaging with business, the research sector and the Australian government.
The priorities of the Lead Scientist are to:
- advocate the importance of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to Victoria's economic future
- enhance university/business engagement and identify opportunities to build scale of activities by facilitating partnerships
- scan the horizon for new technologies and provide high level strategic advice on potential social and economic impacts
- advocate to improve the innovation capacity of the public sector.
Introducing the Lead Scientist
Dr Amanda Caples BSC Hons PhD AICD was appointed to the role in mid-2016. Amanda brings to the role broad experience in technology commercialisation, public policy development and governance of public and private entities. As Deputy Secretary Sector Development and Programs, Amanda was responsible for the development of Future Industries strategic sector growth plans and for support of the Victorian science, innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystem.
After graduating from the University of Melbourne with a PhD in pharmacology, Amanda began her pharmaceutical industry career with Servier Laboratories Australia where she was responsible for local product development and the registration of new medicines for the treatment of diabetes and high blood pressure. Amanda progressed to business development roles first with AMRAD where she secured licensing deals and strategic alliances for the R&D portfolio before joining the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute to establish the Technology Transfer Office.
Amanda joined the Victorian public service in 2002 as the inaugural Director of Biotechnology and subsequently was appointed as the Executive Director Science and Technology to drive the state's science agenda. In these roles, Amanda has led the development of industry sector strategy plans, delivered research-led health initiatives, regulatory and legislative scientific reforms and established international alliances.
In addition, Amanda has worked with Commonwealth agencies on national science and innovation policies and programs, notably the Australian Synchrotron and the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Scheme.
Page last updated: 3 May 2017