It’s hard to believe that we’re already approaching the last six months of our current term. I’m pleased to report that we are progressing extremely well towards our goals. You can take a closer look at our achievements within the Institute’s 2022 Annual Report.
This year has been very productive as we have:
- completed the HCHB research program, a demanding but highly integrated and collaborative program to inform the management of the Coorong
- established the new Limestone Coast project that will support the Landscape Board and National Water Grid Authority to explore climate adaptation options of the extensive drainage network in the region to support groundwater dependant ecosystems and agriculture
- helped establish the One Basin CRC, working closely with the University of Melbourne and partners to develop what will be the largest research partnership in the Murray-Darling Basin (about 90 partners from government, industry and research organisations) to support climate adaptation of irrigation communities
- successfully negotiated the announcement of the Coorong, Lower Lakes and Murray Mouth Research Hub, which will build on the Institute’s research-government partnerships to work with First Nations and regional communities
- received great recognition at the national and state levels with two awards from the Australian Water Association for R&D excellence.
I made the difficult decision to leave the Institute at the end of the year to take up a new opportunity with Watertrust Australia. It’s been an absolute privilege and honour to lead such an important organisation – five years has gone fast!
As I’ve talked to people across Australia, I’ve been continually reminded that the Institute is a very unique and well-regarded partnership that is helping to solve some of the biggest water challenges across Australia. Water is so important to society but it’s also a very challenging area to work in – I believe we can only find solutions by working together.
One of the things that I have enjoyed most during my time at the Institute is the opportunity to work with so many different people. There are of course too many people to thank here but I will highlight a few. Firstly, I’d like to thank John Hill and Barry Hart for their generous and wise guidance as the two Chairs of the Institute during my time. I’d also like to thank our Board, RAC and executives of our partners for their belief in the value of the Institute’s collaborative model and for steering me and the Institute in the right direction. A big thanks to the many researchers and DEW staff involved in our research and its uptake for their commitment and dedication to generating and using the knowledge.
And finally to our amazing team of Daniel Pierce, Alec Rolston, Daniel Flaherty and staff of ICE WaRM and The University of Adelaide in their roles as Institute Manager – it’s been brilliant working so closely with you all – a huge thanks for all of your hard work behind the scenes to make all of the Institute’s work possible.
I have loved my time at the Institute and it’s great to leave it in such a great position and in good hands. The Institute partners have recently agreed to extend the Institute to mid 2026, which will be formalised in the new year, and is a testament to how the Institute is valued by our partners. I wish Alec all the very best in leading the Institute, utilising his extensive experience and expertise in R&D, government policy and stakeholder engagement. I look forward to watching the Institute continue to grow and evolve as it continues to provide knowledge to help solve some of the big challenges for our most precious resource – water.
Dr Kane Aldridge
Goyder Institute for Water Research