South Australian water scientist Dr Michele Akeroyd has taken the helm of South Australia’s premier water research body, the Goyder Institute.
Established in 2010, the Institute is a five-year, $50 million research institution designed to bring together South Australia’s leading water research capabilities.
Water Minister Ian Hunter says Dr Akeroyd, who has been acting in the role since August, is an excellent choice to lead the Institute.
“Dr Akeroyd has extensive experience in managing multi-disciplinary research programs at state, national and international level, across government, industry and not-for-profit sectors,” he says.
“Before joining the Goyder Institute as research director in 2012, she headed up the National Drinking Water Research and Development Program at Water Research Australia.
“Before that, Dr Akeroyd spent seven years with the Murray-Darling Basin Authority, so she has a deep knowledge of the river system that is so important to our state.”
The Goyder Institute is a partnership between the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources, the CSIRO, Flinders University, the University of Adelaide, and the University of South Australia.
Minister Hunter says its single comprehensive research program has been designed to provide expert independent scientific advice to aid in decision making and policy development on water management issues.
“This collaborative approach has worked well to help us develop and deliver water management policy that is strongly science-based,” he says. “The major projects undertaken so far by the Institute have produced important outcomes that is helping to guide government decision-making in areas such as water allocation planning, climate adaptation, implementation of the Murray Darling Basin Plan, and water sensitive urban design.”
Dr Akeroyd says she’s delighted to be given the opportunity to lead such a prestigious institute.
“I look forward to working with the highly-experienced water scientists and policy makers here in South Australia,” she says.
Dr Akeroyd takes over from previous director Dr Tony Minns, who returned to his former home in the Netherlands in August to take up a role as a consultant.