A project that has transformed our knowledge of Australian frog populations and a program empowering young Indigenous leaders through science have been honoured at the 2019 Australian Museum Eureka Prizes.
Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews congratulated the winners of the Eureka Prize for Innovation in Citizen Science and the inaugural Eureka Prize for STEM Inclusion, both sponsored by her department.
“In less than two years, FrogID, winner of the Eureka Prize for Innovation in Citizen Science, has touched all corners of Australia, revealing insights into Australia’s frog distributions, breeding seasons and habitats. The team should be incredibly proud of their work,” Minister Andrews said.
“This project is a brilliant concept, and getting involved is as simple as downloading the app to submit recordings of frogs as you hear them. It really shows what can be done with a bit of innovative thinking.”
The project, led by the Australian Museum together with private partners and cultural institutions, has been supported by a Citizen Science Grant under the Government’s Inspiring Australia – Science Engagement Programme.
The first ever winner of the Eureka Prize for STEM Inclusion, which aims to recognise initiatives working to make science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) a part of all Australians’ lives, was also awarded on the night.
“I am delighted to award this prize to such a deserving winner, the National Indigenous Science Education Program, whose work gives Indigenous students the opportunity to develop STEM and leadership skills,” Minister Andrews said.
“The leadership roles the students have been given have improved their academic achievements in STEM and beyond.”
The program, a joint initiative of Macquarie University, Charles Sturt University and Yaegl Country Aboriginal Elders, supports Indigenous secondary students from lower socio economic status schools to deliver STEM workshops and activities at school, university and community events.
“I congratulate all other winners of the Eureka Prizes, for their initiative, hard work and contributions to Australian science.”
The Eureka Prizes bring together some of Australia’s best scientific minds to celebrate excellence and reward achievement in science, research, innovation and science communication.