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ARC College of Experts bolstered with Southern Cross appointments


Sharlene King
24 February 2023

Southern Cross University’s Professor Nigel Andrew, an entomologist with the Faculty of Science and Engineering, has been accepted into the 2023 Australian Research Council’s College of Experts.

Professor Andrew joins Faculty colleague and biogeochemist Professor Bradley Eyre who was appointed to the expert panel last year.

Members of the ARC College of Experts support the expansion of knowledge in Australia by playing a key role in identifying research excellence and innovation.

Professor Andrew’s three-year term recognises his research contributions to the field of entomology (study of insects), with a particular interest in dung beetles. He is also Editor-in-Chief of Austral Ecology: A Journal of Ecology in the Southern Hemisphere and a Fulbright Senior Scholar.

“I am thrilled to be appointed to the ARC College of Experts and excited about the opportunities ahead,” Professor Andrew said.

“I’ll be working alongside some of the brightest and best minds in Australia to determine the direction of Australia’s research future. I see it as a premier research leadership role and a great way to mentor, train and promote research in all its forms.”

In a peer-review process, the College of Experts moderates assessments of research grant proposals for ARC programs like DECRA (Discovery Early Career Researcher Award) and Linkage and recommends projects to be funded.

A total of 269 members, selected for their multi-disciplinary and cross-disciplinary expertise, make-up the ARC College of Experts in 2023.

ARC Chief Executive Officer Judi Zielke PSM welcomed the new members, saying they would ensure the continuing effectiveness of the ARC College of Experts.

“I am pleased that the College continues to have such strong representation, from a very competitive field of applicants.”

Professor Bradley Eyre is an Earth Scientist with expertise in biogeochemistry.

“It was a privilege to serve on the ARC College of Experts DECRA panel in 2022. It was a very fair and equitable process, and I really enjoyed helping identify Australia’s crop of outstanding early researchers,” said Professor Eyre.

“Unfortunately, there were also many excellent early career researchers who missed out on getting funding due to the limited amount of funds available. This highlights the need for the government to provide more funding for research, particularly for early career researchers.”

Recent Southern Cross experts completing three-year terms with the College include Professor Bronwyn Barkla (plant biology), Professor Brendan Kelaher (marine biology) and Professor Anja Scheffers (earth and environmental science).

Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research and Academic Capability) Professor Mary Spongberg said Southern Cross University has rightly maintained seats at the College table.

“It’s great to have Nigel on board, as head of the Science discipline, and great to see him on the College of Experts along with Brad,” said Professor Spongberg.

“With two internationally renowned scientists on the College, yet again Southern Cross University is punching above its weight.”

Professor Spongberg is active within the Australian Research Council. Last year she was appointed to the ARC’s working group for a new Excellence in Research for Australia metric.

Composite image of two men: one in a glass-wall foyer, the other in a laboratory
Professor Nigel Andrew (left) and Professor Bradley Eyre.

Media contact

Sharlene King, Media Office at Southern Cross University +61 429 661 349 or