About the Research Fellowship
Fund your vision to shape Australia
Westpac Bicentennial Foundation is partnering with Australia’s leading research universities to offer two Westpac Research Fellowships valued at a minimum $400,000 over three years. This unique fellowship supports outstanding early career researchers whose ground-breaking work has the potential to make a difference in one of the Foundation's focus areas:
1. Technology and innovation
2. Strengthening Australia-Asia ties
3. Enabling positive social change
Fellowship recipients will be exceptional people, chosen for their intellectual ability, leadership qualities, and commitment to the community.
The Fellowship has been co-created with our university partners to focus on the specific needs of our research Fellows, and covers each early career researcher’s full-time salary plus professional development and global experiences.
A new holistic approach to supporting your research
The Fellowship aims to free you from the need to apply for multiple sources of funding, allowing you to focus on your research. It includes:
1) Salary support for your position
The Fellowship will fund your fulltime salary and on-costs for a period of three years from the date of award.
2) Opportunity for professional development and global experiences
Leadership demands an ability to view situations and circumstances from a variety of perspectives. The Fellowship provides the opportunity to add a global context to your research and undertake professional development. This may include attending conferences, courses, travel for research, an internship or volunteering.
Funding is available in 2019 for a maximum of three years. Fellows must start their research by 30 June 2019.
Earning a Fellowship is just the start
Money can help launch a vision but it takes a network of inspired and inspiring people to sustain it. That’s why every Westpac Research Fellowship recipient is invited to join the Westpac 100 Scholars Network.
This program offers more than just membership of a network that will help your career. It’s an incredible platform enabling you to join a diverse group of inspiring peers and mentors and providing opportunities for practical support.
Growing by 100 scholars a year across our five scholarship programs, this network will connect those with bold ideas to build a better future for all Australians.
“No other program provides access to other researchers from such varied fields, introductions to the people and companies in the business world or provides the resources that this fellowship offers.”
15 June 2018: Applications open
27 August 2018: Applications close
6-7 December 2018: National Assessment Centre in Sydney
14 December 2018: Notification of outcome
April 2019: Westpac Scholars’ Summit
We're ready to help you change the world
Securing a Fellowship will make an immense difference to your research, resulting in lasting benefits for Australia.
To be a successful candidate, you will need to demonstrate how your proposed research contributes to the growth and prosperity of Australia in at least one of the Foundation’s focus areas.
Who can apply?
Fellowship applicants must demonstrate:
- Academic excellence and achievements to date.
- A supportive and high quality research environment.
- A desire to be part of and contribute to the Westpac 100 Scholars Network.
- A strong sense of connection to Australia and commitment to improving the lives of others.
- The attributes of a Westpac Research Fellow. See the Fellowship Guidelines for the full list of attributes.
- You are an Australian citizen or permanent resident.
- You have been awarded a PhD between 1 September 2012 and 1 September 2015; or have obtained an Eligibility Exemption from the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research) or equivalent if your PhD was awarded prior to 1 September 2012.
- Your proposed area of research is in a field of research at a participating university (refer to Our Partner Universities below) with an Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA) four digit Field of Research (FOR) rating "well above world standing". For a comprehensive list of FOR ratings by university, visit the Australian Research Council’s website.
- You are able to commence your research by 30 June 2019.
- Your proposed research will contribute to the future of Australia in one of the Foundation’s three focus areas (please note: funding requests for the purpose of medical research as defined in the ARC Medical Research Policy available on the Australian Research Council website will not be considered).
- Your proposed research includes international opportunities to develop your leadership skills and global networks, such as; study tours for the purpose of research, attending a short course or conference, an internship or volunteering.
- You are able to supply two letters of reference, one academic reference and one personal reference; and a letter of support from the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research).
- You are able to attend the National Assessment Centre held in Sydney on 6/7 December 2018.
Our Partner Universities
The Westpac Research Fellowship is offered at four leading Australian universities:
- The Australian National University
- The University of Melbourne
- The University of Queensland
- The University of Sydney
Your proposed program of study can be in any field of world class standing at one of these universities, and must be relevant to the Foundation’s focus areas.
“Already I've met so many people in the W100 who encourage me and inspire me. I have been able to find potential areas of research collaborations, and am able to pass on some advice to the next generation of young researchers.”
Some of our Research Fellows
Research Fellowship Selection Panel
The National Selection Panel comprises senior industry and academic leaders responsible for the final selection of Westpac Research Fellows and Future Leader Scholars. Through the rigorous selection process, the Panel is dedicated to recruiting Australia's best and brightest leaders, innovators and pioneers from all walks of life.
Professor Aidan Byrne (2016 - 2018)
Provost and Senior Vice President, The University of Queensland
Professor Aidan Byrne was recently appointed Provost at the University of Queensland. He was previously the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Australian Research Council from 2012 to 2016. Prior to this, Professor Byrne was the the Dean of Science and the Director of the Australian National University (ANU) College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, He has a wealth of industry knowledge and expertise particularly in the Physical and Mathematical Sciences and Engineering.
Professor Byrne completed a BSc and MSc degrees at the University of Auckland before commencing a PhD degree at the ANU in 1981. Following the completion of his degree at the Department of Nuclear Physics he held positions with the University of Melbourne and spent over two years in Bonn, Germany as a von Humboldt fellow. He returned to the ANU in 1989 as a Research Fellow and in 1991 commenced a joint appointment between the Department of Physics, in the Faculty of Science and the Department of Nuclear Physics, Research School of Physical Sciences and Engineering. He was Head of the Department of Physics from 2003 to 2007. His research interests involve the use of gamma-rays as probes to determine the structure of heavy nuclei and the examination of the atomic level structure of materials (especially semiconductors). He has published over 200 papers.
Philip Coffey (2015 - 2018)
Chairman, Westpac Bicentennial Foundation
Philip was appointed as the inaugural Chairman of the Westpac Bicentennial Foundation in April 2014. He is currently an independent non-executive director of Lendlease (appointed January 2017). He recently retired from the role of Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Westpac Group which he held since April 2014 with responsibility for overseeing Westpac’s contribution and response to the Federal Government’s Financial System Inquiry and supporting relationships with key stakeholders including industry groups, regulators, customers and government.
Philip was responsible for the Group’s strategy and mergers and acquisitions function. Prior to this appointment, Philip held the role of Chief Financial Officer from December 2005. Before this, he was Group Executive, Westpac Institutional Bank, having been appointed to that position in 2002. Philip first joined Westpac in 1996 as Head of Foreign Exchange.
He has extensive experience in financial markets, funds management and finance. He began his career at the Reserve Bank of Australia before moving to Citicorp and AIDC Limited. He has also held roles in the United Kingdom and New Zealand. Philip has an honours degree in Economics from the University of Adelaide and has completed the Executive Programme at Stanford University Business School.
Dr Nicholas Farrelly (2015 - 2018)
Associate Dean, Development and Impact, College of Asia and the Pacific, Australian National University
After graduating from the ANU in 2003 with First Class Honours and the University Medal, Nicholas completed his doctorate at Balliol College, University of Oxford, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. He was then appointed Postdoctoral Fellow in the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence in Policing and Security. From 2011-2013 he was the inaugural convenor of the ANU program in Peace, Conflict and War Studies. He has also held two Australian Research Council grants.
At the ANU, Nicholas is currently responsible for College of Asia and the Pacific engagement with a range of government, business and civil society organisations. He supervises six PhD students and a number of Masters and Honours projects. He is also the Director of the ANU Myanmar Research Centre.
Through his own research, Nicholas is known for his expertise on Southeast Asian politics and security. Back in 2006 he co-founded New Mandala, a prominent academic website which offers analysis of social and political issues in Thailand, Myanmar, Malaysia and Indonesia.
Over the past few years, he has focused on a major research project dealing with Myanmar’s political cultures, especially in the new capital of Naypyitaw. While pursuing this research, Nicholas has continued to write and lecture about Thailand, a country at the heart of some of his oldest academic interests. His most recent publication on the country is "Thailand’s triple threat” published by the Lowy Institute earlier this year.
Professor John Shine AC (2015, 2016, 2018)
President Australian Academy of Science, Professor of Medicine and Professor of Molecular Biology, University of NSW, and Chairman, CSL Limited
Professor Shine was appointed to the CSL Board in June 2006 and became Chairman in October 2011. He is Professor of Molecular Biology and Professor of Medicine at the University of NSW, and a Director of many scientific research and medical bodies throughout Australia. Professor Shine was formerly President of the Museum of Applied Arts and Science (Powerhouse Museum and Sydney Observatory) and also Executive Director of the Garvan Institute of Medical Research. He was also formerly Chairman of the National Health and Medical Research Council and a Member of the Prime Minister’s Science, Engineering and Innovation Council. In November 2010, he was awarded the 2010 Prime Minister’s Prize for Science. In 2018 Professor Shine was appointed President of the Australian Academy of Science.
Dr Heather Smith (2016 - 2018)
Secretary of the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, Australian Government
Dr Heather Smith was appointed Secretary of the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science in September 2017. Previously, Heather was Secretary of the Department of Communications and the Arts (appointed January 2016), and prior to that held the position of Deputy Secretary in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet since May 2013. Heather was responsible for innovation policy and public data policy and recently headed the Prime Minister's Taskforce on Innovation. In October 2013 she was appointed by Prime Minister Abbott as Australia's G20 Sherpa, a role she held during Australia's Presidency. Prior to this Heather had responsibility in the Department for economic, industry, infrastructure, environment and strategic policy matters in her role as Deputy Secretary Economic and Strategy. From August 2010 to May 2013, Heather was Deputy Secretary in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade with responsibility for the Americas and Africa, North Asia, international security issues, G20 and the international economy, and information technology issues. She also served as an advisory member of then Prime Minister Gillard's Australia in the Asian Century White Paper.
Between February 2005 and August 2010, Heather was Deputy Director-General, Office of National Assessments (Australia's peak intelligence assessment agency) with responsibility, at various times, for North Asia, South Asia, the Pacific, transnational issues, international economic issues, corporate issues, and foreign intelligence coordination.
Between 2003-2005, Heather held positions at the Australian Treasury as General Manager, G20 and APEC Secretariat and General Manager, International Economy Division. From 2000-2003, she was Assistant Director-General, International Economy Branch, Office of National Assessment. Before joining the public service Heather was an academic working on North Asia at the Australian National University, holding various position from 1994-2000. She also worked at the Reserve Bank of Australia from 1988-1990. Heather holds a Bachelor of Economics (First Class Honours) from the University of Queensland and a Masters and PhD in Economics from the Australian National University. She has been a visiting scholar at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C. In 2012, Heather completed the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School.
Jon Nicholson (2016 - 2018)
Director, Westpac Bicentennial Foundation
Jon has had a long career in banking and finance. He was most recently a senior executive in Westpac for eight years and a senior partner in Boston Consulting Group, responsible for financial services across Asia. As well as serving on the Westpac Bicentennial Foundation, Jon also chairs the Westpac Foundation board. Jon has a deep commitment to the social sector and to creating greater opportunities for the less privileged and more marginalised members of the Australian community. Jon is a director of the Cape York Partnership and of Quintessence Laboratories and remains an advisor to Boston Consulting Group.
Professor Tanya Monro (2017, 2018)
Deputy Vice Chancellor Research and Innovation, University of South Australia
Professor Tanya Monro took up the role of Deputy Vice Chancellor Research and Innovation in November 2014.
The ARC Georgina Sweet Laureate Fellow at the University of South Australia, Prof Monro was the inaugural Director of the Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing (IPAS) from 2008 to 2014 and was also the inaugural Director for the ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale BioPhotonics (CNBP) at the University of Adelaide. Her research is in the field of photonics, with a focus on sensing, lasers and new classes of optical fibres.
Professor Monro obtained her PhD in physics in 1998 from The University of Sydney, for which she was awarded the Bragg Gold Medal. In 2000, she received a Royal Society University Research Fellowship at the Optoelectronics Research Centre at the University of Southampton.
Prof Monro is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science (AAS) the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE), the Optical Society of America (OSA) and the Australian Institute of Physics. She is a member of the Prime Minister’s Commonwealth Science Council (CSC), and a Board Member of the Commonwealth Science and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), the South Australian Defence Advisory Board, and the South Australian Economic Development Board.
Tanya’s awards include: Eureka Prize for Excellence in Interdisciplinary Scientific Research, the Bragg Gold Medal (best Physics PhD in Australia), South Australia’s “Australian of the Year”, Scopus Young Researcher of the Year, South Australian Scientist of the Year, and the Prime Minister’s Malcolm McIntosh Prize for Physical Scientist of the Year.
Professor Judy Raper (2017, 2018)
Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research and Innovation – University of Wollongong
Professor Judy Raper joined the University of Wollongong in 2008 with extensive management and research administration experience in other Australian and American universities. She has served on the ARC Engineering and Earth Sciences Professor Judy Raper joined the University of Wollongong in 2008 with extensive management and research administration experience in other Australian and American universities. She has served on the ARC Engineering and Earth Sciences Panel at the University of New South Wales, and was Division Director for Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport Systems at the National Science Foundation in Washington, DC.
Professor Raper is a chemical engineer of 40 years standing with expertise in air and water pollution control, particle technology, research and education.
Professor Raper followed her undergraduate and PhD degrees from the University of New South Wales with postdoctoral research at the University of Cambridge in the UK, working at the Atomic Energy Research Establishment at Harwell. She taught at both the University of Newcastle and the University of New South Wales before joining the University of Sydney as Dean of Engineering where she revolutionised the undergraduate engineering programs.
Recognition of Judy's achievements includes the Shedden Pacific Award for the Young Chemical Engineer of the Year (1992), the EA Professional Engineer of the Year (1997) and the Avon Spirit of Achievement Award for Science (1998). She was elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and as an Honorary Fellow of Engineers Australia in 2003. In 2013, Professor Raper was listed as one of Australia's most influential women, and as one of Australia's most influential engineers for three consecutive years (2013-2015). In 2017, she won the Chemeca Medal for distinguished service to the practice of Chemical Engineering.
Professor Ian Smith (2017, 2018)
Vice-Provost (Research & Research Infrastructure), Monash University
Ian is Vice-Provost (Research & Research Infrastructure) at Monash University, playing a University-wide leadership role.
Previously at Monash University, Professor Smith was a National Health and Medical Research Council-funded Professorial Fellow in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and Deputy Dean (Research) for the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.
Ian is an accomplished medical researcher and is recognized as a leader in his field. This research has resulted in over 250 publications and many patents. Ian receives regular invitations to speak at international meetings, many as a plenary speaker. His research has had a direct impact on human health and has led to changes in clinical practice.
Ian was a co-founder of a proteomics-based, publicly listed, biotechnology company and he continues to collaborate and consult widely with the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry. Ian serves on six international editorial boards and over the years he has held office-bearing positions in a number of national and international societies and has had an active involvement in the organisation of numerous national and international scientific meetings. Finally, he has held and continues to hold, a variety of national and international senior government and non- government advisory board/committee memberships.
Ann Sherry AO (2018)
Chairman of Carnival Australia
Ann is one of Australia's leading business executives with a career that spans Government, Banking and Cruise Tourism.
She is currently the Chairman of Carnival Australia, the largest cruise ship operator in Australasia and a division of Carnival Corporation & Plc. After joining as Chief Executive Officer in 2007, she has transformed the industry and growth has been in double digits each year since.
Ann is the Chair of UNICEF Australia, a Council Member of Philanthropy Australia and currently holds non-executive roles with National Australia Bank, Sydney Airport, Palladium Group, Rugby Australia, Cape York Partnerships, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia and Infrastructure Victoria.
Beginning working life as a radiographer, Ann became First Assistant Secretary of the Office of the Status of Women in Canberra before moving to the banking sector initially in HR roles, then in CEO roles with Westpac NZ and the Bank of Melbourne.
The Australian Government awarded Ann the Centenary Medal in 2001 and in 2004 she was awarded an Order of Australia. In 2015, Ann was named as the overall winner of the Australian Financial Review 100 Women of Influence Award.
Ann devotes considerable energy to her passion for women’s rights, currently convening the MCC STEM group, opportunity for Indigenous communities, philanthropy and to the arts.
Applications for the 2019 Westpac Research Fellowship are now closed.
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