Chief Executive Officer – Science & Technology Australia

  • Leadership & senior management opportunity with high profile peak body
  • Exciting, variety filled national advocacy role
  • Competitive package up to $200K
  • Not-for-profit organization in key sector

 Science & Technology Australia (STA) is Australia’s peak body in science and technology. Through its members, which include more than 80 scientific societies and STEM sector organisations, STA gives voice to more than 78,000 scientists and technologists working across Australia. With a strong and growing national profile and a suite of successful programs and events, STA is a respected federal advocate for scientists and technologists among politicians, business leaders and the wider community.

STA encourages dialogue between governments, the science community and industry; works to improve science policy and planning; supports and encourages a diverse and inclusive STEM workforce; empowers STEM professionals to advocate for themselves and their sector; promotes public understanding of science; and supports its members to excel.  Further information is available at

STA was established in 1985 (as the Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies – FASTS) and has its office in Canberra.

STA is a leading national advocate for the science and technology sector in Australia and achieves its objectives through a range of activities including:

  • Active engagement with parliamentarians and departmental officers through formal and informal mechanisms
  • The annual flagship Science meets Parliament event
  • The high profile Superstars of STEM program
  • Active media engagement
  • Collaboration with other public and private sector organisations
  • Proactive advice and support for member organisations and their stakeholders
  • Preparation of policy papers, submissions and positions on relevant scientific issues
  • A range of events and activities to support a thriving STEM sector including reports, leadership meetings, and workshops

We seek to be an employer of choice through our commitment to sustainability, inclusivity and provision of a flexible workplace.

The position

Working in collaboration with the President, Executive Committee and STA Board, and supported by a dynamic team, the CEO is responsible for design and delivery of the organisation’s vision, strategy and implementation of programs ensuring alignment with STA’s objectives and mission.

As CEO of a peak advocacy body, you will ensure STA continues to grow and achieve its mission to provide excellent support and advice to its members; sustain its strong reputation; have high impact and influence with government, the media and other stakeholders; drive positive change in the STEM sector, and; consolidate its strong financial position.

Your ability to lead, motivate and inspire a professional and passionate team will be critical to the ongoing success of STA.

 The person

The successful applicant will be a strategically minded leader, be able to apply judgment under pressure, be able to work independently and within a team, and manage competing priorities. She or he will excel in communication and in managing relationships, have sound financial skills, and be personally committed to nurturing a flexible, inclusive workplace culture.

Key responsibilities

  • Support the STA Board to develop STA’s strategic and operational plans and budget
  • Implement the strategic plan and report to the STA Executive against KPIs
  • Actively engage and support the STA leadership to actively engage with parliamentarians, departmental officers, industry and the science sector
  • Manage a professional and passionate team (8.0 FTE), some of whom work remotely, to run day‐to‐day operations
  • Develop and maintain relationships with internal and external stakeholders
  • Manage the organisation’s financial health including diversification of income and fundraising efforts
  • Oversee events, programs and activities including the annual Science meets Parliament
  • Oversee STA’s communications strategy
  • Guide secretariat support for the executive and board including the management of elections and other governance requirements

Selection criteria

  • Experience and strategic understanding of policy, political, and media processes
  • Outstanding communication, advocacy and/or representational skills and experience
  • Experience in establishing and maintaining stakeholder relationships and networks
  • Commitment to supporting and strengthening science, technology, research and innovation in Australia
  • Experience in successful financial and management of operational and legal requirements of NFP organisations
  • Management of staff, and/or teams to deliver high quality outcomes
  • Strong organisational and planning skills

Salary and working hours:

Full time package of $180K – $200K plus attractive performance incentives.

Normal working hours are 37.5 hours per week. STA encourages and supports a flexible approach to working hours, by mutual agreement with supervisors.

The position is based in Canberra but will involve some interstate travel.

We strongly encourage applications from Indigenous Australians, people with disability, people from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, professionals of all ages and LGBTIQA+ people.

How to apply

Application should contain a cover letter, 2 pages (maximum) demonstrating achievement against the selection criteria, and a brief CV. Email the applications directly to: and

If you would like to discuss the position contact STA President-elect Jeremy Brownlie or STA CEO Kylie Walker


Applications close COB Tuesday 4 December 2019.


Selection Criteria

  1. Experience and solid understanding of political, policy and media processes
  2. Strong representational, advocacy and networking skills towards the achievement of policy goals and strategic objectives.
  3. Leadership and/or management experience with representative organisations
  4. Strong ability to work with and effectively communicate with internal and external stakeholders including STA board and executive committee and members, parliamentarians, public servants and industry and science sector representatives
  5. Ability to engage with current science and innovation policy issues
  6. Ability to think strategically and problem solve
  7. Demonstrated superior oral and written communication skills to a broad range of audiences. Candidates should submit examples of published outputs such as media releases, op-eds, submissions, briefing papers or reports.
  8. High level organisational skills/event management skills
  9. Demonstrated personal commitment to diversity and inclusion
  10. Proven capacity to manage small office including budgets, staff, OH&S and related issues
  11. Commitment to supporting and strengthening science, technology, research and innovation in Australia