14 July 2010

BRISBANE - Former Queensland Premier Peter Beattie will be back at the cradle of Australia’s ‘Smart State’ in an honorary capacity at two University of Queensland institutes that he helped found.

Peter Beattie has been made an Adjunct Professor in Bioscience and Nanotechnology with UQ’s Australian Institute for Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (AIBN) and Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB).

The appointment means he can continue contributing to the growth of Queensland and Australian biotech and nanotechnology, while holding a part-time position at Clemson University in South Carolina.

"The Smart State program that Adjunct Professor Beattie started when he was Premier (1998-2007) has made Queensland an international player in the competitive field of biotechnology," UQ Vice-Chancellor & President Professor Paul Greenfield said.

“He followed this up when he became Queensland’s Trade and Investment Commissioner to The Americas in 2008, never missing an opportunity to promote Queensland innovation, research and higher education.

“UQ is his alma mater, and we are delighted he agreed to serve in a voluntary capacity in two Smart State success stories, alongside some world leaders in nano- and biotech discovery."

Adjunct professorships at UQ are honorary appointments offered to leaders in particular fields, who are willing to share their experience with students, staff and community members – for instance through visiting lectures, public lectures, and advice on how teaching and research can better serve economic and social needs.

Adjunct Professor Beattie, who will finish his term as Trade Commissioner on Friday (July 16), was awarded the first International Excellence in Leadership Award from the global Biotechnology Industry Organisation (BIO) in 2008.

In 2003 he received an Honorary Doctorate of Science from UQ in recognition of his leadership and commitment to higher education through Smart State initiatives and his support for research in the fields of biotechnology and nanotechnology.

He has a Bachelor of Arts (Qld), Bachelor of Laws (Qld) and Master of Arts (Qld UT).

He also has honorary doctorates from the University of South Carolina, Queensland University of Technology, Griffith University and Bond University.

Since he opened the AIBN in 2006 it has merged the skills of the engineer, chemist, biologist and computational scientist to conduct a world-class research program in nano-scale science, technology and engineering, technology transfer and commercialisation.

The IMB, which was UQ’s first Smart State era institute, is recognised nationally and internationally for molecular bioscience research, and has some of the best research facilities in the Asia-Pacific region.

Both AIBN and IMB received seed funding from The Atlantic Philanthropies and the Queensland Government.