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AFRAN laureates 2019

Every year, the Australian-French Association for Research and Innovation (AFRAN) organises a call for projects to further empower the AFRAN community by supporting initiatives designed to federate, build and scale up thematic communities around particular research and innovation areas between France and Australia.

In 2019, AFRAN has awarded $15000 in grants to support member-led collaborative initiatives tackling major societal issues facing Australia and France. Five laureate projects have been selected through a competitive selection process, demonstrating the excellence and dynamism of French-Australian research collaborations.

  • GrAiNZ- Grains Gathering 2019 and Public seminar

October 2019, University of Melbourne

This initiative will bring Dr Delphine Sicard, from INRA Montpellier in France, to Australia. Dr Sicard will attend the GrAiNZ gathering, an industry led conference to discuss agro-ecology, food fermentation and production. The GrAiNZ gathering is an annual event, connecting grain growers and users, to learn from each other and build a local grain economy. They will discuss biodiversity, sustainability, food sovereignty, grain economies, indigenous agriculture and foodways and heritage and perennial wheat. Dr Sicard’s input will bring the ‘French’ experience to the discussion, to understand how small-scale food production can improve biodiversity, health and sustainable food production. Dr Sicard will also present a public and open seminar about her research. This event will be accessible to all and AFRAN members are invited.

Dr Sicard’s visit will be the basis of an ongoing collaboration between INRA and the University of Melbourne to exchange students, knowledge and techniques.

  • Exploring the history of French science in the Pacific: developing the historiography of “archéologie océaniste”.

March 2020, The Australian National University

The Collective Biography of Archaeology in the Pacific (CBAP), an ARC Laureate project, investigates the historiography of archaeology in the Pacific, particularly in considering non-Anglophone research traditions and scholars. In March 2020, the CBAP will host an international conference which will include discussions led by keynote speakers around perspectives for future collaborations and projects. This initiative will bring a French keynote speaker, Prof. Nathan Schlanger from the Ecole Nationale des Chartes in Paris, to lead discussion on Theory and Method of archaeology’s historiography, as well as perspectives for future Franco-Australian collaborations and opportunities such as grant applications or visiting schemes for students and researchers.

Franco-Australian collaborations will also be explored by inviting Pacific Islands Indigenous participants to the conference, especially from the francophone islands. The guests will be professionals, experienced in cultural heritage and archaeological research, such as Museum directors and curators.

  • First French-Australian Symposium on Surveillance and the Humanities

July or August 2020, The Australian National University

Surveillance has emerged as a generalized practice used by governments and industries to monitor, determine and predict human activity. It has become a theme in literature, film, arts, and constitutes nowadays a topic of scholarly investigation. This initiative will set up a French-Australian Symposium to create the conditions of a conversation between disciplines such as legal studies, social sciences, political science, law, computer science, and humanities, to explore with a multidisciplinary approach this contemporary issue.

The symposium will be followed by executive meetings to discuss long-term collaborations between the French and Australian teams, as well as masterclasses organised by French researchers during their stays. This gathering of French and Australian academics would be the opportunity to create closer research ties between the Centre for Law, Arts and the Humanities (ANU) and the Law and Humanities research centre (Panthéon-Assas).

  • Australia-France Workshop on Agent-based Modelling applied to Smart Cities

August 2019, University of Wollongong

This initiative aims at bringing together world-leading Australian and French researchers in the fields of advanced computer science (artificial intelligence, simulation, Agent-Based Modelling/ABM) and smart cities (new technologies for data analytics and societal positive outcomes). A 4-dayworkshop will include lectures and tutorials on agent-based modelling using GAMA with varied urban application, by French and Australian researchers. The audience for the workshop will be relevant students, researchers, and professionals from government and private sector.

This will be followed by a 1-day research meeting with the core Australian and French researchers nominated in this proposal, and relevant participants to discuss strategies and projects for long-term and structured collaboration in research and education.

  • Australia-France Workshop on freshwater monitoring in semi-arid regions

February 2020, Ecosciences Precinct, Brisbane

Freshwater quality and quantity is a pressing issue as human population impacts the Earth’s environment and climate systems. The ability to maintain extensive monitoring networks for episodic blue-green algal and suspended sediment events is an enormous challenge.

This proposed small workshop will bring together expertise across both CSIRO’s Aquatic Remote Sensing team and the GET Hydro-Biogeochemistry of the Critical Zone team to explore complementarities, and to scope a pathway for future collaboration. These two teams have been exploring combinations of low-cost near surface and satellite sensing approaches. Their expertise spans the bio-optical properties of inland water ecosystems, satellite algorithm development, water quality and its impacts on human health.

This workshop will allow the two teams to joint forces in better understanding water pathways, workflows, and quality issues in semi-arid regions and their links to human health across the developed and developing world. Future fieldwork, publication, proposal for further funding to pilot and scale up the activities of this new collaboration, as well as a Memorandum of Understanding between GET and CSIRO, will also be discussed.

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