Albury Charles Sturt University expert Lee Baumgartner will have the ear of a NSW Senator in an ambassador program.
The fish and river management ecologist was selected from 100 applicants to be one of 17 STEM Ambassadors for Science and Technology Australia's 'STEM Ambassadors Program'.
The initiative began in 2019 and pairs science and technology professionals with pollies.
Professor Baumgartner has been paired with NSW Senator Perin Davey.
"NSW is dealing with some significant water security challenges and is implementing a significant infrastructure program," he said.
"It is important that the program and associated policy decisions are informed by best-available science - this is the main reason I decided to apply for the program.
"Scientists often get too caught up in reporting their results in a technical sense and don't take the time to discuss this with decision makers to ensure the results find their way into decision making."
The STEM Ambassadors will meet with their assigned Parliamentarian throughout the year.
Senator Davey said science had to inform policy and the ambassador program supported this.
"Lee is based at a regional university and his expertise in fish ecology and natural resource management is very much aligned with my background in water policy and my passion for regional education," she said.
IN OTHER NEWS:
Science and Technology Australia chief executive Misha Schubert congratulated ambassadors on their selection from a highly-competitive field.
"Science has been Australia's salvation in tackling COVID-19," she said.
"Australia needs to continue to build on that strong relationship between the STEM sector and Parliamentarians to prepare Australia to meet future challenges.
"The STEM Ambassador program empowers experts to become effective advocates for science and the sector, and to use their expertise to inform policy to shape Australia's future."
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