Read about our programs
We implement and/or fund several programs and initiatives to deliver on outcomes set out in the Advancing Women in STEM Strategy and the 2020 Action Plan.
- Australia’s Women in STEM Ambassador was established in 2018 to advance gender equity in STEM in Australia. Professor Lisa Harvey-Smith is the current Women in STEM Ambassador. The Office of the Women in STEM Ambassador also delivers the Future You initiative, to challenge stereotypes in STEM.
- Superstars of STEM program equips brilliant diverse women in STEM with advanced communication skills and opportunities to inspire the next generation to consider careers in STEM. The program aims to improve the visibility of women in STEM and smash gender assumptions on who can work in STEM.
- The STEM Equity Monitor is a national data report on girls and women in STEM. The Monitor reports the current state of STEM gender equity in Australia, and measures changes and trends. It follows the participation of women in STEM through school, higher education, graduation and the workforce.
- The Girls in STEM Toolkit (The GiST) is a website that provides resources to inspire and inform girls, schools, teachers and families in STEM. The website includes a career quiz with 21 multiple choice questions which helps girls find the STEM subjects and careers to match their interests based on their answers. Education Services Australia delivers the initiative.
We provide grants to fund projects that boost women participation in STEM and entrepreneurship:
- The Women in STEM and Entrepreneurship program provides grants for projects that increase women’s and girls’ participation in STEM and entrepreneurship. Recent recipients of the grants included a project that will engage 600 First Nations girls (aged 14–24) in entrepreneurship.
- The Boosting the Next Generation of Women in STEM awards provides funding to a single delivery partner to provide 500 university scholarships to women to retrain and bolster their STEM qualifications.
- The Boosting Female Founders (BFF) Initiative provides grants (on a co-contribution basis) to majority women-owned and led startups to help them access the finance they need to scale into domestic and global markets. The program also provides access to expert mentoring to women entrepreneurs to help them scale and grow their startups. One of the recipients of the BFF grants has a startup (Planet Protector Packaging) that manufactures Woolpack. Woolpack is a sustainable insulated packaging used in the shipment of temperature sensitive food and pharmaceuticals.
- The Cyber Security Skills Partnership Innovation Fund (CSSPIF) supports innovative projects to diversify the cyber security workforce. In the second round, the fund was particularly interested in projects that could boost the participation of women and other underrepresented groups in the cyber security industry.
We also administer the Prime Minister's Prizes for Science, Australia’s most prestigious awards for outstanding achievements in scientific research, research-based innovation, and excellence in science teaching.
Some of the outstanding women recipients from past years:
These are just some of the programs and initiatives our department implements or funds to ensure we are doing our part to advance diversity, inclusiveness and gender equality in our communities.
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