Science and Research

Successful and prosperous societies promote a culture that greatly values and supports science, engineering, innovation, enterprise and creativity. Governments have an active role to play in protecting and promoting scientific research and innovation.


The Australian Greens believe that:

1. Research is essential for social progress and is a public good. It needs no further justification for public support than its existence and must be properly resourced.

2. Governments have a vital role to play in supporting research in the sciences and humanities.

3. Ethical standards in the conduct of research must be properly regulated.

4. Research, innovation and the drive to develop new technology can help us build a better future.

5. Innovation and advanced technologies are key elements for success for business and industry.

6. The application of science and technology must be ecologically sustainable and not contribute to social harm.

7. Specific and targeted investment in research in the sciences and humanities is necessary to address the climate crisis and to transition to a sustainable society.

8. Research is an inherently cooperative process and should be built on a shared global knowledge base.

9. Government policy should better facilitate cooperation between science research, education, innovation and business.

10. Patent reform should reward genuine technological innovation while avoiding excessive concentration of intellectual property and unwarranted patent extensions.

11. Scientific and technical literacy is essential to building a better society. Improving scientific and technical literacy requires significant and targeted public education investment. 

12. Research work should be secure, well-resourced and subject to fair, transparent and democratic oversight to ensure that Australia remains a location of choice for professional researchers.

13. The scientific principles and practice of independent, peer-reviewed research is essential to the development and availability of high-quality knowledge and must not be compromised.

14. Government-funded research should be made as widely accessible as possible.

15. The benefits of new and emerging technologies developed with public funding should flow back to the public that funded them, through public ownership.

16. New knowledge and new technologies can have significant positive potential, but can also have great, often unforeseen, risks, and must be properly regulated.


The Australian Greens want:

1. A research and innovation focus which addresses community needs and national goals to prepare Australia for emerging challenges and opportunities.

2. Increased expenditure on public and private research and development in Australia to at least 4% of GDP.

3. Secure and collaborative funding models that allow for pooling of resources and improved job security.

4. Increased and more predictable funding for public research agencies and universities to enable world class and independent research and improve job security for scientists and researchers.

5. A precautionary approach by Government, including community engagement, regarding the safe application of new technologies.

6. Increased public funding to universities to expand their research capacity in the sciences and humanities.

7. Support moving from Education to Science and Research: increased funding for pure research to ensure that adequate resources are being directed towards this sector of the research community.

8. Increase funding for research and innovation in clean energy and other technologies and land management to support the transition to a net negative greenhouse gas society.

9. The removal of ministerial capacity to veto independently peer-reviewed funding decisions.

10. Academic research funding to be prioritised based on public benefit rather than on the likelihood of developing commercially valuable intellectual property rights.

11. Free, open and timely publishing of publicly funded academic research.

12. Increased use of research, science and innovation to support the viability of rural and remote communities.

13. Education and investment opportunities to foster the participation of women and other under-represented groups in science and technology.

14. Stronger vetting for patent applications to improve the rigour of the grant process and the value of granted patents.

15. Government policy and support which fosters greater commercialisation of Australian science, research and innovation in Australia by local companies.

(Science and Research Policy as amended by Special National Conference February 2021.)