The Conference Committee is delighted to announce that our keynote speakers for this year are:

Professor Matthew Bailes, Laureate Fellow, Swinburne University

The title of Professor Bailes' talk is 'supervising your supervisor' 


Professor Matthew Bailes is an Australian Research Council Laureate Fellow and the Director of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Gravitational Wave Discovery (OzGRav). He is a world leader in the discovery and timing of millisecond pulsars and has made pivotal contributions to the discovery of the Fast Radio Bursts – enigmatic millisecond-duration bursts of radio waves that strike the Earth many thousands of times per day and are of unknown origin.

Professor Bailes’ research mainly concerns developing instrumentation for time domain astrophysics and using it for pulsar and FRB discovery in conjunction with collaborators in Australia, Europe and the US. He is the Australian Champion of the Breakthrough Listen project with the Parkes 64m radio telescope. This project aimed to search (intelligently) for the existence of Extra-Terrestrial life with the Parkes 64m radio telescope in collaboration with the CSIRO and Berkeley. From 2017 he will lead the MeerTIME project that will use the new MeerKAT telescope to time radio pulsars as part of an international collaboration. Professor Bailes founded the Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing at Swinburne in 1998 and served as its Director for the first 12 years. His team developed a supercomputer for the 50 year-old Molonglo telescope to transform it into a pulsar timing and FRB discovery machine as part of the UTMOST project.

Professor Helen Bartlett

Federation University Australia welcomed Professor Helen Bartlett to the role of Vice-Chancellor on 1 May 2017.  She is the first female Vice-Chancellor of the University.

Professor Bartlett has worked in higher education for more than 30 years, holding senior leadership roles at all organisational levels in universities in UK, Hong Kong and Australia.

She has an international research record in gerontology, with a focus on population ageing, healthy ageing, aged and community care.  She has published widely - including several books - and supervised over 35 higher research degree students.
Professor Bartlett has also established and directed three research centres: the Australasian Centre on Ageing at the University of Queensland, the Oxford Centre for Health Care Research and Development, and the Oxford Dementia Centre at Oxford Brookes University.

Plenary Speakers:

Professor Leigh Sullivan
Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research and Innovation

Professor Leigh Sullivan is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) at Federation University Australia, where he is responsible for the University-wide research portfolio.

Professor Sullivan has an international reputation for his research in acid sulfate soils and carbon biosequestration. He has obtained over $17m in competitive funding to support his research activities and has published over 300 articles, books and chapters. Professor Sullivan has also secured several international patents arising from his research activities and is currently a Director of two R&D companies involved in the development and commercialisation of these discoveries.

Professor Caroline Finch
Executive Dean of Graduate Studies

Professor Caroline Finch leads the FedUni Graduate School, whose role is to support HDR programs across the university and to develop and implement policies relating to HDR matters.

Professor Finch is also the Director of the Australian Centre for Research into Injury in Sport and its Prevention (ACRISP) at FedUni. She has been awarded more than $21.7 million in research funding from the NHMRC, ARC and other national and international research agencies. Professor Finch has been ranked as one of the 10 most highly published injury researchers of all time and in the top three most influential sports medicine researchers internationally. Professor Finch has supervised 26 PhD/Masters students to completion and currently supervises 10 PhD students at FedUni.