Science Meets Parliament 2024

Science Meets Parliament

We’re delighted to announce SMP2024 will be held on 20–21 March 2024 in person at Australian Parliament House.

Science Meets Parliament is Australia’s most powerful vehicle for deep engagement between the STEM sector and policymakers.

This event offers an unrivalled program of bespoke training to forge deeper connections between federal Parliamentarians and those working in science and technology. It plays crucial role to build relationships to bring STEM expertise even more deeply into the service of the nation.

It does so by giving STEM experts a deeper understanding of how to engage effectively with policymakers. And it helps policymakers to connect with key experts in science and technology.

Our national gathering of STEM leaders includes expert-led professional development, a welcome reception, a Parliamentary forum, national gala dinner, a televised National Press Club address, and opportunities for delegates to meet in small groups privately with Parliamentarians..

An annual highlight on the Parliamentary calendar, Science Meets Parliament 2024 will deliver outstanding opportunities to elevate visibility and understanding of STEM in Parliament and Australian Government Departments.

SMP2024 Patrons

Cathy Foley

Dr Cathy Foley
AO PSM

Australia's Chief Scientist

Brian Schmidt

Prof Brian Schmidt
AC FRS FAA FTS

Nobel laureate
and Distinguished Professor

Science Meets Parliament holds a very special place in my heart because it was the first official speaking role that I had as the Minister for Industry and Science. And it was a unique opportunity to be able to meet with you all.”

The Hon Ed Husic MP,
Minister for Industry and Science

I met with Allegra Spender. She was fantastic, very engaged. We talked about the importance of biological collections, their untapped knowledge and the need to train a new generation of taxonomists.”

SMP Delegate feedback, 2023

Who should attend Science Meets Parliament?

Science Meets Parliament is open to all Australian STEM professionals in academia, industry and government. This includes PhD students through to leaders in the STEM sector.

STEM professionals with an interest in broadening their networks and learning how to engage effectively with policymakers are encouraged to attend the event.

Eligibility to meet with a Parliamentarian

Only delegates attending from STA Member Organisations will be invited to express their interest in having a meeting with a Parliamentarian.

Registration inclusions

  • Access to runway content, delivered online, in the week leading up to SMP;
  • Attendance at Science Meets Parliament, 20 and 21 March in Parliament House, Canberra;
  • One ticket to the National Gala Dinner;
  • One ticket to the closing networking event;
  • Option to attend Question Time or bespoke tours around Parliament House.

National Press Club Address

Tickets to attend the National Press Club address and luncheon are limited, and therefore an optional additional purchase. Delegates who do not attend will have lunch catered at Parliament House and watch the live broadcast of the Address.

 

Partnerships

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for Science Meets Parliament please have a look at our partnership information and levels for further information.

 

Past SMP events

View the full program and delegate feedback from Science Meets Parliament 2023

Tickets and registration

STA Members

Delegates representing STA Member organisations
ECR $1,550 | Member $1,750

Registration includes:

  • Access to online runway sessions which will be delivered in the week prior to SMP;
  • Attendance at Science Meets Parliament, in Parliament House, Canberra on 20 and 21 March 2024;
  • Option to meet with a Parliamentarian during SMP;
  • One ticket to the gala dinner.

Group registration available via link above. 

Non-STA Members

STEM professionals not associated with an STA Member organisation
Non-STA Member $1,950

Registration includes:

  • Access to online runway sessions which will be delivered in the week prior to SMP;
  • Attendance at Science Meets Parliament, in Parliament House, Canberra on 20 and 21 March 2024;
  • One ticket to the gala dinner.

Gala dinner

Celebrate the STEM community in the Great Hall of Parliament House
SMP welcome reception & gala dinner
Ticket price: $250

One Gala dinner ticket is already included in all delegate registrations.

Wednesday 20 March 2024

6:30 - 10:30pm, Australian Parliament House, Canberra

Full tables can be purchased, each table seats 10.

SMP National Press Club address

Tickets are limited!
SMP National Press Club address
Ticket price: $120

 

Speaker
Professor Sharath Sriram
STA President

Wednesday 20 March 2024

12 - 1:30pm, National Press Club, Barton ACT

For SMP delegates: Tickets are not included in any registration type and can be purchased during the registration process.

Bus transfers will be available for delegates to travel from Parliament House to the National Press Club.

Speakers

Welcome to Country and welcome to Science Meets Parliament

At the beginning of SMP 2024, Ngunnawal custodian Serena Williams will welcome us to the Country. Followed by Minister for Industry & Science Ed Husic MP and Shadow Minister for Science Paul Fletcher MP will welcome us to the event.

Serena Williams

Serena Williams

Ngunnawal custodian

Ed Husic

Ed Husic MP

Minister for Industry and Science

Paul Fletcher MP

Paul Fletcher MP

Shadow Minister for Science

Keynote – Securing Australia's future in a global R&D race

Professor Emma Johnston introduced and in conversation with Professor Brian Schmidt.

Professor Emma Johnston AO FAA FTSE

Prof Emma Johnston
AO FAA FTSE

Deputy Vice-Chancellor
(Research)
and Professor

Brian Schmidt

Prof Brian Schmidt
AC FRS FAA FTS

Nobel laureate
and Distinguished Professor

Keynote – Science saving the planet

Professor Martin Green introduced and in conversation with Australia's Chief Scientist Dr Cathy Foley.

Martin Green

Prof Martin Green
AM FRS FAA

Dean of Physical and Biological Sciences
University of California

Cathy Foley

Dr Cathy Foley
AO PSM

Australia's Chief Scientist

Session – Parliamentary Forum

A wide-ranging discussion with leading MPs and Senators on how Australia's Parliamentarians and political parties see the role of science, expertise and evidence.

Aaron Violi

Aaron Violi

Liberal MP

 

02. Allegra Spender 002

Allegra Spender

Independent MP

 

David Pocock

David Pocock

Independent Senator

 

04. David Shoebridge 002

David Shoebridge

Greens Senator

 

Perin Davey

Perin Davey

Nationals Deputy Leader
and Senator

 

Zaneta Mascarenhas

Zaneta Mascarenhas

Labor MP

 

Session – STEM Leadership Panel

STA President Sharath Sriram chairs this session, where he asks leading Australian scientists about the next opportunities and challenges on the horizon for Australian science.

Sharath Sriram

Prof Sharath Sriram

STA President
and Professor at RMIT

Cathy Foley

Dr Cathy Foley
AO PSM

Australia's Chief Scientist

Doug Hilton

Prof Doug Hilton
AO FAA FTSE FAHMS

CSIRO Chief Executive

Kalinda Griffiths

Dr Kalinda Griffiths

Director at Poche SA+NT
and Associate Professor

Session – Key skills for advocates + submissions and soundbites

Chaired by STA Director and Policy Chair Kathy Nicholson, Australia's most impressive changemakers share their expert insights on advocacy, alliance-building, creating media-worthy and policy-influencing submissions, and crafting clever soundbites.

Kathy Nicholson

Dr Kathy Nicholson

STA Board Director
and Operations Manager (AIML)

Anna Maria Arabia

Anna-Maria Arabia

CEO of the Australian Academy of Science

Feyi Akindoyeni

Feyi Akindoyeni

Partner at SEC Newgate

Fleur Anderson

Fleur Anderson

Former political journalist
and Director (89 Degrees East)

Matthew Cossey

Matthew Cossey

CEO of CropLife Australia

Session – The Science Life of Brian

Professor Bryan Gaensler and Professor Brian Schmidt in conversation with Guardian science editor Donna Lu.

Bryan Gaensler

Prof Bryan Gaensler

UNSW Scientia Professor
and Director of the ACAP

Brian Schmidt

Prof Brian Schmidt
AC FRS FAA FTS

Nobel laureate
and Distinguished Professor

Donna Lu

Donna Lu

Guardian science editor

Session – A parliamentary and power primer: Understanding Australia’s democratic system

Former Speaker of the House of Representatives Professor Hon Tony Smith  in conversation with former STA CEO Misha Schubert.

Tony Smith

Professor Hon Tony Smith

Former Speaker of the
House of Representatives

Misha Schubert

Misha Schubert

Former CEO of
Science & Technology Australia

Session – Next steps to elevate and invest in First Nations Knowledges as a priority

Chaired by Gamilaraay environmental scientist Landon Brady, this session brings together Indigenous STEM leaders to discuss the next steps toward ensuring Indigenous Knowledges have dedicated attention within the National Science & Research Priorities.

Landon Brady

Landon Brady

Gamilaraay environmental scientist

Chris Matthews

Professor Chris Matthews

Quandamooka mathematician,
ATSIMA Chair and STA Board Director

Katrina Wruck

Dr Katrina Wruck

Mabuigilaig/Goemulgal chemical engineer

Tiahni Adamson

Tiahni Adamson

Torres Strait Islander environmental scientist and Superstar of STEM

brad sq

Assoc Prof Bradley Moggridge

Kamilaroi Indigenous water scientist

Session – Science & evidence in public policy: a leadership dialogue

Chaired by Founder and Director of Ocean Decade Australia and STA Board Director Jas Chambers , hear from how Government Departments work together to solve Australia's most complex challenges.

Jas Chambers

Jas Chambers

Cofounder of Ocean Decades
and STA Vice-President

Meghan Quinn

Meghan Quinn PSM

Secretary, Department of Department of Industry, Science & Resources

Tony Cook

Tony Cook PSM

Secretary, Department of Education

Blair Comley

Blair Comley PSM

Secretary, Department of
Health and Aged Care

cheryl sq

Emeritus Prof Cheryl Praeger AC

National Science & Technology Council

Session – Media panel: Getting science into the news cycle

Chaired by Superstar Of STEM and STA Board Director Dr Lila Landowski, in this session we'll hear from senior journalists and news presenters about how to get science stories into the media.

Dr Lila Landowski

Dr Lila Landowski

Lecturer at UTAS
and STA Board Director

Donna Lu

Donna Lu

Guardian science editor

Brandon How

Brandon How

Press Gallery reporter
for InnovationAus

Nate Byrne

Nate Byrne

ABC News Breakfast presenter

Runway Content – Practice your pitch

Learn from Australia's best science communicators how to pitch your complex science to Parliamentarians and the media.

Dr Lila Landowski

Dr Lila Landowski

Lecturer at UTAS
and STA Board Director

Dr Vanessa Pirotta

Dr Vanessa Pirotta

Wildlife scientist
and science communicator

Tanya Ha

Tanya Ha

Science in Public
journalist

Heather Catchpole

Heather Catchpole

CEO of
Refraction Media

Runway Content – Preparing to meet a Parliamentarian

Hear from Science Meets Parliament veterans and Parliamentary engagement experts on what you should know before you meet with a Parliamentarian.

Kylie Walker

Kylie Walker

CEO of
ATSE

Luke Sheehy

Luke Sheehy

CEO of
Universities Australia

Jas Chambers

Jas Chambers

Cofounder of Ocean Decades
and STA Vice-President

Program

SMP offers a powerful program of bespoke training to equip scientists with advanced skills in policy engagement, communications, advocacy and influence.

STA Members have the opportunity to meet with Parliamentarians during the two day program. Scientist meetings with MPs and Senators.

High-energy events including a National Press Club address and gala dinner in the Great Hall of Parliament.

1:00 PM - 1:45 PM AEDTPractice Your Pitch 
A compelling pitch, word picture or analogy can powerfully distil complex scientific knowledge. This is key to capture the imagination of policymakers and the public alike. Learn from some of Australia’s best science communicators how to pitch your complex science to lay audiences including Parliamentarians at Science Meets Parliament and the media. 

Lecturer at University of Tasmania and STA Board Director Dr. Lila Landowski   
Wildlife Scientist and Science Communicator Dr. Vanessa Pirotta 
Science in Public journalist Tanya Ha
Chair: CEO of Refraction Media Heather Catchpole

2:00 PM - 2:45 PM AEDTPreparing to meet a Parliamentarian
What should you know before you meet with your Parliamentarian - and how should you prepare? Hear from Science Meets Parliament veterans and Parliamentary engagement experts on what to expect in your meeting, how to make it a success, and how to follow-up. 

CEO of ATSE Kylie Walker 
CEO of Universities Australia Luke Sheehy 
Chair: Cofounder of Ocean Decade Australia and STA Vice-President Jas Chambers 

8:00 AMArrival, registration, coffee cart
8:30 AMWelcome to Country - Ngunnawal custodian Serena Williams 
Welcome to SMP – Minister for Industry & Science Ed Husic MP & Shadow Minister for Science Paul Fletcher MP
Partner Spotlight – Department of Industry, Science & Research  
9:00 AMOpening Keynote: Securing Australia’s future in a global R&D race

Professor Emma Johnston AO, introduced & in conversation with Nobel Laureate Professor Brian Schmidt AC 

9:30 AMSTEM Leadership Panel – Supported by CSIRO

Partner Spotlight – Dr Hafna Ahmed, CSIRO Where are we at in the sweep of human history and scientific development – and where should the next era take us? What are the big opportunities on the horizon for Australian science – and how can we seize them? Where will we land on the refreshed science priorities? How do we start to scale investment in Australian R&D closer towards a 3% of GDP target and build stronger sovereign capability? 

Australia’s Chief Scientist Dr Cathy Foley
CSIRO Chief Executive Professor Doug Hilton
Yawuru epidemiologist Associate Professor Kalinda Griffiths
Chair: STA President Professor Sharath Sriram 

10:0 AMBreak
10:20 AMA Parliamentary and Power Primer: Understanding Australia’s Democratic System

What are the structures of Australia’s Parliamentary democracy, how are Governments chosen, and how do Parliamentary processes really work? How legislation originates and is passed, the role of inquiries, committee hearings, Senate Estimates and advice from the public service. 

Former Speaker of the House of Representatives Professor Hon Tony Smith 
In conversation with former STA CEO Misha Schubert

10:50 AMPresence, prescience and poise: the role of policy advisors

Senior policy advisors play a hugely pivotal role in Australia’s political system, acting as eyes and ears for Ministers and MPs, mastering complex policy fields, and engaging with stakeholders on policy ideas and legislation. Three of the very best in the business share insight on how they work, the pressures on their time, and the most effective ways to get helpful information in front of them and their boss.  

Brooke Curtin, Senior Advisor, Office of the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, Shadow Minister for Science
Dr John Byron, Principal Policy Advisor, Office of the Vice-Chancellor, Queensland University of Technology
Chair: Catriona Jackson, former CEO of Universities Australia & STA

11:20 AMPartner Spotlight
11:30 AMTravel from Parliament House to National Press Club
12:00 PMNational Press Club Address – Supported by MTPConnect
STA President Professor Sharath Sriram 
1:30 PMTravel from National Press Club to Parliament House
2:00 PMPartner Spotlight
2:10 PMKey skills for advocates

How do Australia’s best campaign and advocacy minds devise strategy, shape messaging and build alliances for impact? Australia’s most impressive changemakers share their expert insights on how to approach advocacy, the importance of being clear about what success is, and how to forge coalitions to maximise the effectiveness of your campaigns.

CEO of the Australian Academy of Science Anna-Maria Arabia  
Partner at SEC Newgate Feyi Akindoyeni Former political journalist, Director at 89 Degrees East Fleur Anderson
CEO of CropLife Australia Matthew Cossey
Chair – Dr Kathy Nicholson, Chair STA Policy Committee 

2:50 PMTech Transfer Lightning Talk
3:00 PMMeetings with Parliamentarians commence
3:00 PMNext steps to elevate and invest in First Nations Knowledges as a priority: Supported by AbbVie 

In the consultations on renewing Australia’s official National Science & Research Priorities, Indigenous leaders and organisations in STEM – in partnership with Science & Technology Australia – advocated strongly for Indigenous knowledges to be a dedicated priority in its own right and interwoven across the rest of the priorities. How can this priority be operationalised, and what are the next steps, policy levers and investments needed to achieve this ambition? 

Quandamooka mathematician, ATSIMA Chair and STA Board Director Professor Chris Matthews
Mabuigilaig/Goemulgal chemical engineer Dr Katrina Wruck 
Torres Strait Islander environmental scientist & Superstar of STEM Tiahni Adamson
Kamilaroi Indigenous water scientist Associate Professor Bradley Moggridge
Chair: Landon Brady  

3:45 PMPartner Spotlight
4:00 PMClose of day one
6:30 PMSMP Gala Dinner
Welcome Reception in APH Marble Foyer – Supported by AbbVie 
7:30 PMGala dinner in APH Great Hall – Supported by ANSTO
Speakers include Minister for Industry & Science Ed Husic MP, Shadow Minister for Science Paul Fletcher MP, Australia’s Chief Scientist Dr Cathy Foley
10:30 PMGala Dinner Ends
8:00AM - 6:00PMMeetings with Parliamentarians
7:30 AMArrival, registration, coffee cart
8:00 AMParliamentary Forum – Supported by Deakin University
Partner SpotlightHow do Australia’s Parliamentarians and political parties see the role of science, expertise and evidence? In a wide-ranging discussion, leading MPs and Senators will talk about what science means to them and their party, why Australia needs science, their policy offerings to strengthen science and the science workforce, and advice for scientists on engaging with politicians and the Parliament to inform policy and legislation. Nationals Senator Perin Davey
Liberal MP Aaron Violi
Labor MP Zaneta Mascarenhas
Greens Senator David Shoebridge Independent Senator David Pocock
Independent MP Allegra Spender 
Chair: Lecturer at University of Tasmania and STA Board Director Dr. Lila Landowski
8:50 AMPartner Spotlight
9:00 AMKeynote – science saving the planet. 

UNSW Scientia Professor Martin Green introduced & in conversation with Australia’s Chief Scientist Dr Cathy Foley. 

He’s the rockstar global scientist whose research may save the planet. In 1983, Scientia Professor Martin Green and his photovoltaics team at UNSW developed a revolutionary new technology to break world records for solar cell efficiency – now used to generate more than 90% of the world’s solar energy.   

9:30 AMBreak
10:00 AMScience & evidence in public policy: a leadership dialogue

To drive research advances that solve Australia’s most complex challenges, Government Departments need to engage with each other to power innovation from fundamental research through to commercialisation. How are Government Departments coordinating policy to ensure advances don’t fall between cracks?
How is public policy really made? What’s the role of the public service in identifying emerging opportunities, how do Departments gather input from trusted stakeholders, and how do they support Ministers?

Meghan Quinn PSM – Secretary, Department of Industry, Science & Resource
Tony Cook PSM– Secretary, Department of Education 
Blair Comley PSM – Secretary, Department of Health and Aged Care
Emeritus Professor Cheryl Praeger AC, National Science & Technology Council  
Chair: Founder & Director of Ocean Decade Australia Jas Chambers 

10:40 AMTech Transfer Lightning Talk
10:50 AMPartner Spotlight
11:00 AMMedia Panel – Getting science into the news cycle 

In this conversation with senior journalists and news presenters, we'll share insights on how to get science stories into the media, being great talent, what makes a great news ‘hook’, how to build a long-term relationship with journalists and producers, and how the media cycle works. 

Donna Lu – Guardian Australia 
Brandon How – InnovationAus
Chair: CEO of Pawsey Supercomputing and STA Governance & FAR Chair Mark Stickells
Additional speakers TBC 

11:40 AMAdvanced Cultural Capability 

Forging deep partnerships of trust between non-Indigenous Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and organisations is essential to great leadership. In this lightning session, we cover some of the essential skills and insights for stronger cultural capability – understanding the importance of conventions, protocols - to deepen cultural capability across our sector.  

Aurora Foundation Chair and Nyikina man Charles Prouse in conversation with Healing Foundation CEO and Yawuru woman Shannan Dodson 

12:10 PMLunch and Networking
1:00 PMThe Science Life of Brian(s) 

Global astronomy superstars Professor Bryan Gaensler and Professor Brian Schmidt in conversation with Guardian science editor Donna Lu 

1:40 PMPartner Spotlight
2:00 PMDelegates attend Parliamentary Question Time or bespoke tours of Parliament House 
3:30 PMKeynote: US Ambassador to Australia Caroline Kennedy
4:00 PMClosing session of SMP2024
4:30 PMSMP ends - meeting program continues until 6:00PM

Scholarship recipients

We appreciate the generous support of the SMP Scholarship Partners: Exciton Science, Sanofi, Poche SA & NT, Pawsey Supercomputing Centre, CropLife Australia, Australian Technology Network of Universities, the Australian Academy of Science, and the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences & Engineering.

First Nations
Briana Gordon

Briana Gordon

Wiradjuri PhD candidate and APS First Nations Policy Officer

Danielle Kampers

Danielle Kampers

Wardandi-Noongar Fulbright Postgraduate scholar

Katrina Wruck

Dr Katrina Wruck

Mabuigilaig/Goemulgal chemical engineer

Landon Brady

Landon Brady

Gamilaraay environmental scientist

Laura-Jane Phoenix Singh

Laura-Jane Phoenix Singh

Quandmooka/Wiradjuri academic

Regional and remote
Nnamdi Eseme

Nnamdi Eseme

Biomedical scientist

rebecca thistlethwaite

Rebecca Thistlethwaite

Plant breeding research associate

LGBTQIA+
Michelle Sims

Michelle Sims

Slice of Science creator/host
and PhD candidate

Technology
Caitlin Curtis

Dr Caitlin Curtis

Research fellow at
UQ's Centre for Policy Futures

Partners

Foundation

Science Meets Parliament 2024 is supported by the Australian Government Department of Industry, Science and Resources through the Inspiring Australia Science Engagement Program.

Gala Dinner

Titanium

National Press Club Address

Platinum

Welcome Reception

Named Sessions

Leadership Dialogue
EDI
Parliamentary Forum

Gold

Coffee Cart

Silver

FAQs

Registration

What does my registration include?
All registration types include access to online runway sessions on 13 March and attendance at the 2 day program, 20 & 21 March, of bespoke professional training and one ticket to the gala dinner.

Delegates from an STA Member Organisation have the opportunity to meet with a Member of Parliament.

Flights and accommodation are not included in any registrations. For tips on accommodation and transport, please see the Event Information section below.

What is the difference between an STA Member and Non-STA Member registration?
STA member organisations may access unlimited registrations at a discounted rate. Additionally, SMP 2024 delegates, attending from STA member organisations, have the option to be considered for a meeting with a Member of Parliament. To see a full list of STA Member organisations, please visit our website.

Where can I find the conference’s refund policy?
The full event Terms and Conditions can be found here. Section 5 details the refund policy.

What happens if I can no longer attend? 

If you can no longer attend SMP 2024, the National Press Club address and/or the National Gala Dinner you may transfer your registration to someone else.

You must notify Science & Technology Australia by emailing us at events@sta.org.au, providing the name and contact details of the delegate receiving the transferrable.

For STA member delegates, we encourage you to transfer your registration to someone within your member organisation.

If you are unable to transfer your registration, you will be subject to our refund policy found in the event Terms & Conditions.

Who is eligible for ECR registration?
Any STEM Professional who is within nine years post-PhD, excluding career breaks, is eligible.

What financing options are available?
Thanks to generous sponsors, Science & Technology Australia offers a range of scholarships. Please check eligibility requirements. If you are experiencing financial hardship, please contact us at events@sta.org.au

How can I pay for my SMP23 registration?
All delegates regardless if they are registered as a group or an individual, will be offered two options for payment: credit card or transfer via EFT as per invoice details.

I am part of an STA member organisation. Who do I get in contact with to organize my registration?
We strongly encourage STA member delegates to contact their STA member organisation before registering for SMP24.

If you are unable to get in contact with your STA member organisation, please email members@sta.org.au.

Why isn’t the National Press Club address included in my registration?
The National Press Club is a small venue with a limited seating capacity, ss such we are unable to include a ticket with any registration type.

You may purchase National Press Club tickets separately during the registration process. A waitlist will be implemented.

Event Information

What time do I arrive at Parliament House for SMP 2024?
Please arrive at the Australian Parliament House between 8–8:30 am on Wednesday 20 March 2024.

We ask delegates to make time for transport, getting through security and checking in with the event staff.

The professional development program will start at 9 am sharp.

What is the dress code for SMP 2024 and the National Gala Dinner?
The dress code for SMP 2024 business attire, including meetings with Parliamentarians.

The dress code for the gala dinner is formal.

What are the transport options in Canberra?
To get to Parliament House from your accommodation, you may take a taxi, hire a car or through the Uber app.

STA member delegates are welcome to access the discount codes for Thrifty car hire, available through the Member Benefit Scheme. Please contact members@sta.org.au for more information.

Where can I stay in Canberra?
We recommend booking in accommodation ASAP as the event coincides with a Parliamentary sitting week.

The closest hotels to Parliament House and the National Press Club are Hotel Realm, Hotel Kurrajong and Burbury Hotel.

STA member delegates are welcome to access discount codes for TFE Hotels available through the Member Benefit Scheme. Please contact members@sta.org.au for more information.

Will there be childcare available?

Thanks to the generous support of SMP Childcare Partner, Functional Materials and Microsystems, we're offering a limited number of bursaries to give delegates with care responsibilities (not limited to the care of young children) more freedom to participate in the conference program and functions.

If you require additional care to participate in SMP, please get in touch. Grants of up to $400 are available.

To be eligible you must:

  • Be attending SMP2024 as a registered delegate.
  • Have childcare needs for children aged 10 or under, OR, are a primary carer,
  • Require additional care outside of your family's usual needs.

Only one grant is available per family and funding is limited. Please email events@sta.org.au outlining the age of your dependant, describe what support you need and the estimated cost.

Meeting with a Member of Parliament

Can I have a meeting with a Member of Parliament?
Delegates who are representing an STA member organisation are eligible to be considered for a meeting.

I am a member of an STA member organisation. Am I guaranteed a meeting?
No. Due to the limited availability of MPs and Senators, we cannot guarantee enough Parliamentarians for the number of event delegates.

We will try to match at least one person per STA member organisation with a Member of Parliament for a meeting.

We encourage delegates to make their biographies clear and interesting to maximize the success of the meeting-matching process.

Can I choose which Parliamentarian I meet with?
No. The Science & Technology Australia team will match SMP delegates with MPs and Senators based on the nominated topics they can speak to and participant availability.

Can I choose what time my meeting is?
No. Meetings will take place on the afternoon of Wednesday 20 and all day on Thursday 21 March 2024, which are Parliamentary sitting days. As MPs/Senators have limited time to take meetings their availability determines the meeting times.

Can I have my meeting online?

No. All meetings will take place in person on Wednesday 20 and Thursday 21 March 2024. The only exception is if an MP/Senator has to cancel and reschedule the meeting online at a later date.

What happens if my meeting gets cancelled by the Member of Parliament?
If your meeting gets cancelled by your MP/Senator, we will try our best to reschedule your meeting on the same day or online at a later date. However, this is not guaranteed and is subject to the availability of the MP/Senator.

What happens if I can no longer attend my meeting?
You must inform the STA team ASAP using events@sta.org.au

Can I bring a presentation for my meeting?
No. We ask that delegates do not bring a presentation along to their meeting with an MP/Senator.

However, if there is a small, interesting item that showcases the research you do, you may be permitted to bring that item.

Please contact events@sta.org.au to confirm if this item would be appropriate for the meeting, including if it will be permitted through Parliament House security.

Will my meeting be one-on-one with a Member of Parliament?
No. A small group of event delegates from 2–4 people will meet with a Member of Parliament. You will get a chance to meet and coordinate with the other delegates prior to the meeting.

Contact

For enquiries about SMP2024, please contact:

Lucy Guest
Director of Events and Membership
T: 02 6113 0781
or visit our Contact Us page