Professor Lisa Harvey-Smith

Professor Lisa Harvey-Smith has been reappointed as the Women in STEM Ambassador for a third term to November 2023.

The Ambassador and her office influence and mobilise Australia’s business leaders, educators and policymakers to increase the participation of women and girls in STEM.

The Ambassador does this by:

  • raising awareness on equity issues
  • advocating for change
  • breaking down bias and stereotypes
  • building the visibility of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Professor Harvey-Smith was the inaugural Ambassador, appointed in 2018. The Australian Government established the role to advance gender equity in STEM in Australia as part of our Advancing Women in STEM Strategy. The department has allocated $7.3 million in funding from 2018-19 to 2025-26 to the Ambassador program to support the work of the Ambassador and her office.

The Ambassador is a visible role model to girls and women in STEM. Since 2018, Professor Harvey-Smith has reached 128,732 unique participants through 519 hours of public engagements and outreach.

‘I am extremely proud of the work my team has delivered since I was appointed as Australia’s Women in STEM Ambassador in 2018,’ Professor Harvey-Smith said. ‘But we still have a lot of work ahead of us to drive collective action across the STEM sector.

‘Over the next 12 months, we are more determined than ever to accelerate progress towards equity in STEM as we bring together the industry, government, research and education sectors to drive the systemic and cultural change necessary to ensure that everyone can participate in STEM.’

Professor Harvey-Smith has led a strong portfolio of work, including:

  • Future You: A national awareness raising initiative that aims to break down gender stereotypes and inspire an interest in STEM in children aged 8-12 years old.
  • STEM Equity Evaluation Portal: A portal to support the STEM sector ensure evaluation and best practice underpin equity programs.
  • Grants by Gender study: a study looking at the award of research grants in Australia by the Australian Research Council and National Health and Medical Research Council according to awardee gender.

The Ambassador will also conduct research to support the independent Pathway to Diversity in STEM review