ANU celebrates top media performers

11 December 2015

I know that engaging with the media can seem daunting at times - but doing so helps not just to raise your profile, but the profile of the University. It helps to raise the standard of public debate in this country and beyond.

ANU has celebrated the contribution of academics and staff who have helped raise the University profile in the media in 2015.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Young presented awards to some of the top performers in the media, with winners ranging from scientists on hover boards to an astronomer who organised a world-record star-gazing event.

"It has been another big year for media, communications and outreach at ANU and it is your efforts in telling the ANU story that we are here to celebrate," Professor Young said.

"I know that engaging with the media can seem daunting at times - but doing so helps not just to raise your profile, but the profile of the University. It helps to raise the standard of public debate in this country and beyond."

The Vice-Chancellor's awards for Advancing the Reputation of the University went to:

Dr Clarke Jones (CAP)

Clarke Jones' commitment to media has made him an ever-present ANU voice throughout 2015. With the opening of the new Counter Terrorism Hub in August, Clarke has almost single-handedly kept ANU at the forefront of debate and research into de-radicalisation.

Professor Don Rothwell (COL)

Professor Rothwell's tireless media work in attempt to save Australians Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran from the death penalty in Indonesia was commendable. In addition, Professor Rothwell has been a prolific media voice commentating on world legal matters from whaling to people smuggling.

Dr Jill Sheppard - ANUpoll (CASS)

Throughout 2015 Jill has established herself as a leading political commentator. ANUPoll has achieved widespread media coverage and considerable public interest. The November edition of ANU Poll on Australia's class system was one of the top read stories on the ABC website for week.

Professor Miranda Stewart (CAP)

Professor Stewart has worked tirelessly to build the profile of the Tax and Transfer Policy Institute and the Crawford School of Public Policy.

Professor Peter Drysdale and Shiro Armstrong (CAP)

The East Asia forum is a superb example of ANU outreach, engaging with policy makers and academic thinkers in Australia and across the world. It is a publication with impact that informs public debate and set the agenda. It reaches beyond the blog and magazine, with pieces regularly appearing in national media. Peter Drysdale, Shiro Armstrong and the team at EAF have made an outstanding contribution to ANU outreach.

The award for the most unusual story went to Dr Graham Walker (CPAS) for demonstrating his unique hoverboard on Back to the Future. Highly commended were Dr Julien Louys, Dr Brad Tucker, Mr Billy Ó Foghlú, and Dr Larry Lu.

The Social Media ward went to Cris Clucas and The Student Experience Team for founding the popular Facebook page Faces of ANU. Highly commended were Dr Inge Mewburn and Dr Andrew Hughes.

The award for Innovative Communications went to Professor Simon Haberle for developing a popular pollen app and website, which gives forecasts and reading of pollen for hayfever sufferers. Highly commended were Dr Brad Tucker, Professor Robert Heinsohn and Dr Dejan Stojanovic, Mrs Amy Jarvis, and the Science Communications and Marketing Team.

The Emerging Talent award was presented to Dr Vanessa Beanland, for her work on the psychology of driving and road safety. Highly commended were Dr Brad Tucker, Dr Adam Henschke, Dr David Bissell, Dr Ryan Goss, Dr Emmeline Taylor, Dr Adam Butt and Dr Jill Sheppard.

The award for improving the quality of public debate went to historian Professor Joan Beaumont, for her contribution to public debate about the future of ANZAC Day. Highly commended were Professor Amin Saikal, Professor Kate Reynolds, Professor Giles Hirst,

Professor Michael Wesley, Dr Mark Howden and Associate Professor Frank Jotzo.

The Media Impact award was presented to Dr Mohammad Saadatfar and Mr Jin Tao, for the eh spectacular media coverage of their research into English willow and the secrets of the cricket bat, helped by Text keeper Brad Haddin. Highly commended were Dr Andrew Glikson, Dr Thomas Wallenius, and Mr Roman Khakimov and Mr Andrew Truscott.

The award for best on-screen talent went to Dr Emmeline Taylor, for her work on shoplifting. Highly commended were Dr Brad Tucker, Professor Kim Rubenstien, Dr Sam Bennett and Kiara Bruggeman.

The outreach award for contribution to the community went to Dr Emma Kirby and Dr Brad Tucker, who set two new world records for the most people star gazing at one time and most people stargazing at multiple locations. Highly commended were Mr Andrew Farriss, Mr Colin Steele and Mrs Amy Jarvis.

The award for Impressive Media Performance went to Dr Clarke Jones (CAP), for his many appearances to discuss national security and radicalisation. Highly commended were Dr John Blaxland, Dr Jill Sheppard, Dr Sophie Lewis and Dr Rhodri Davies.

The Op-Ed award was presented to Professor Miranda Stewart (CAP), for her commentary on tax reform. Highly commended were Professor Hugh White, Professor Warwick McKibbin,

Professor Rory Medcalf, Professor Tessa Morris-Suzuki, Professor Amin Saikal and Professor John Warhurst.

The Public Policy award went to Dr Bill Fogarty and Professor Mick Dodson (NCIS) for their groundbreaking report into Indigenous cricket, which has had a fundamental impact on the way Cricket Australia now promotes the game to Indigenous Australians. Highly commended were Professor Peter McDonald, Professor Matthew Gray, Dr Armin Haller, Professor Martyn Kirk, Professor Kaarin Anstey, Associate Professor Rebecca McKetin and Dr Debbie Saunders.