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Curtin University
Note to staff

13 November 2014


Employer of Choice for Gender Equality

I am delighted to advise that Curtin has been named as an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA).

Curtin is one of only 76 organisations in Australia, and the only university in WA to be awarded the title. The University has held WGEA’s predecessor citation, the Employer of Choice for Women citation, since 2002.

The Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation addresses the structural and cultural barriers that prevent women and men from equally participating at all levels of an organisation. I am very pleased that our sustained effort to embed equal employment opportunities in policy and practice has been recognised.

Receiving this citation celebrates and confirms the inclusive culture of the University.

Australian Research Council Grants

I am delighted to announce Curtin’s recent success in the Australian Research Council (ARC) grants, with the University receiving more than $5.7 million in funding (commencing in 2015). This success includes twelve ARC Discovery Projects, two ARC Discovery Early Career Research Awards (DECRA), and one ARC Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities (LIEF) grant.

These projects will help to build Curtin’s knowledge and capacity towards becoming a more research intensive university, and I congratulate all the successful candidates.

The researchers and projects are listed below. The full results are listed on the ARC website

ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award Proposals

Dr Thanh Vinh Nguyen
Project Title: Organocatalysis: A New Horizon for Synthesis of Organic Structures.

Dr Kaiming Bi
Project Title: Using Sandwich Pipe for Pipeline Vibration Control.

ARC Discovery Proposals

Professor Craig Buckley, Dr Debbie Silvester-Dean and Dr Drew Sheppard
Project Title: Mesoporous Metal Scaffolds: Reactive Containment Vessels.

Professor Ian Fitzsimons and Associate Professor Chris Clark
Project Title: Migmatites, charnockites and crustal fluid flux during orogenesis.

Professor Kliti Grice and Dr Lorenz Schwark
Project Title: Sulfur Cycling in Toxic Oozes, Microbialites and Petroleum.

Professor Hong Hao
Project Title: Development of Precast Concrete Segmental Columns to Resist Dynamic Loads.

Associate Professor Geoffrey Jalleh, Professor Robert Donovan and Dr Daniel Gucciardi
Project Title: Evaluation of a psychological anti-doping intervention for athletes.

Professor San Ping Jiang
Project Title: Oxide-based high temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells.

Professor San Ping Jiang and Dr Raffaella Demichelis
Project Title: New carbon nanotube electrocatalysts for water splitting and fuel cells.

Professor Ottmar Lipp
Project Title: The emotional face: Effects on orienting, visual search, and categorization.

Associate Professor Nigel Marks, Professor Craig Buckley and Dr Irene Suarez-Martinez
Project Title: Understanding graphitization: developing a model for activated carbons.

Professor Shaobin Wang, Professor Moses Tade and Dr Hongqi Sun
Project Title: Engineered and functionalised nanocarbons for clean energy and water.

Professor Zongping Shao and Professor Moses Tade
Project Title: Experimental and modelling development of advanced symmetrical fuel cells.

Professor Hongwei Wu
Project Title: Coproduction of Bioslurry and Liquid Transport Fuels from Biomass Pyrolysis.

ARC Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities (LIEF) Proposals

Professors Zheng-Xiang Li, Phil Bland, Christopher Elders and Simon Wilde, Dr Sergei Pisarevsky and Associate Professor Christopher Clark
Project Title: A fully automated, fully shielded palaeomagnetic system.

I also congratulate the Curtin researchers involved in successful grants in collaboration with lead researchers from other institutions.

Curtin Careers & Employment Centre wins national award

In more good news, the Curtin Careers & Employment Centre has been awarded ‘Best Careers Service’ for 2014 by the Australian Association of Graduate Employers (AAGE).

Each year, the AAGE recognise outstanding examples of excellence in the Australian graduate recruitment and career development industry through the annual AAGE Graduate Recruitment Industry Awards.

The awards are determined by the data and opinions collected from the AAGE’s industry partners.

I congratulate all staff involved in this outstanding achievement.

Professor Gwidon Stachowiak

I wish to congratulate Professor Gwidon Stachowiak from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, who has become the first Australian to receive the prestigious Tribology Gold Medal.

The Gold Medal is awarded annually by the UK Tribology Trust for significant achievements in tribology. Since 1972, the Medal has been awarded to 43 individuals from 13 countries.

Professor Stachowiak’s award was unanimously supported by the Award’s committee and the Medal will be presented at the British Embassy in Australia.

Tribology is the science and technology of controlling friction and wear. In Australia, tribology is of great importance not only to the mining, mineral processing and oil and gas industries but also to the health of many Australians.

I congratulate Professor Stachowiak on this achievement and the global recognition of his work.

Vale Associate Professor Paola Ferroni

I was very sad to hear of the tragic death of Associate Professor Paola Ferroni after being hit by a car whilst cycling in West Perth last week.

Paola provided exceptional leadership in teaching, research and mentoring at Curtin for more than twenty years. She started her academic life in the School of Social Work and, in 1999, was appointed as Director of the Centre for International Health (CIH), a role that she undertook until 2008. There she created an exciting and productive enterprise that changed the nature of graduate education and research in international health, not only in Australia, but across the world.

Amongst her achievements, she was influential in the establishment of a six-chair Kidney Dialysis Centre, set up by the Red Crescent in Sarawak.

Paola’s vibrant, loyal and generous nature profoundly influenced the career and personal lives of so many of her colleagues and students.

Our sincere condolences go to Professor Rosemary Coates and other members of Paola’s family.

In accordance with Paola’s wishes there will not be a public funeral.

  1. Ann Payne November 13, 2014 2:50pm

    I am shocked and saddened to hear of Paola’s tragic passing. I worked with Paola a number of years ago and found her a dedicated and charming work colleague. My condolences to all her family and friends. RIP Paola.

  2. Nerellie Richards November 13, 2014 4:03pm

    I was fortunate enough to work with Paola from 1999-2008 while she was Director of CIH. Paola was always incredibly supportive of her staff, especially the professional staff, and encouraged every one of us to perform at our best. It was wonderful to work with someone so inspiring, loyal and hard working. In our close-knit team with Paola at the helm, we shared many laughs over the years, often despite some challenging moments for CIH. I cherish these early memories of my time here at Curtin working with Paola and pass on my deepest sympathies to Rosemary and other family members.

  3. Kliti Grice November 13, 2014 10:33pm

    I met Paola at many events at Curtin and I was inspired as an ECR at Curtin in 1999 onwards by her inspiration as a leader.I pass on my sympathy to her partner and family.

  4. Natasha Forde November 17, 2014 3:45pm

    It was my privilege to have worked closely with Paola during her CIH days. I have fond memories of the CIH team under Paola’s leadership, it was a time that shaped me professionally and personally. Paola is an inspiration and lived life to the fullest. A very great loss, my sincere sympathies to Rosemary and their family.

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