Office of the Chief Scientist: Australian science policy fellowship

The Australian Science Policy Fellowship Program (the program) is an initiative of the Office of the Chief Scientist that gives scientists the opportunity to work in a Commonwealth Government department for 12-months.

The program offers a range of benefits to participants:

  • Fellows receive on-the-job training in, and exposure to, policymaking. They will not be appointed as subject matter specialists, but rather will be expected to participate in the activities of existing teams in their host department. The skills that Fellows have acquired throughout their research career are expected to be transferable and of value to policy development broadly.
  • Fellows will have access to professional development and mentoring provided by their host department, and are supported by the Office of the Chief Scientist.
  • Fellows will become part of an alumni network and at the end of the program, Fellows will be well placed to compete for policy and program roles should they choose to stay in the APS.

For the 2021-2022 Program, Fellows may have the opportunity to work in one of the many participating APS department and agencies, including:

  • Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications
  • Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources
  • Department of Veterans’ Affairs
  • Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment
  • Department of Social Services
  • Department of Health
  • Services Australia
  • Attorney-General’s Department
  • Department of Education, Skills and Employment
  • Department of Finance
  • Department of Home Affairs

Funding & duration

Fellows are employed as APS 6 policy officers by participating Commonwealth Government host departments for 12 months. Conditions of employment and remuneration will be in accordance with the relevant host department’s enterprise agreement.


The program is targeted at early and mid-career scientists and engineers who are no more than 15 years post-PhD (adjusted for career breaks).

Submission requirements & due date

  • Applications must be submitted direct to sponsor by 26 April 2021

Further information

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