Canberra announces CEO and board appointments to Australia's innovation body

The federal government has appointed Dr Charles Day as the chief executive officer of Innovation and Science Australia.

The federal government has announced a number of appointments on Wednesday to both Innovation and Science Australia (ISA) and the Cooperative Research Centre Advisory (CRC) Committee.

The new chief executive officer of ISA, the body charged with overseeing the nation's innovation agenda, will be Dr Charles Day, who has been touted by Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Greg Hunt as the University of Melbourne's innovation expert.

Day enters the CEO role having been the previous program director for the University of Melbourne's Carlton Connect initiative -- a science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) precinct that co-locates researchers from across the university's academic disciplines with public and private sector organisations.

He is also a member of the Murdoch Children's Research Institute board and on its Translation and Commercialisation Committee; headed the University of Melbourne's technology commercialisation company, Melbourne Ventures; was co-founder of the Melbourne Accelerator Program, which supports startups at the university; and is a Rhodes Scholar, completing a PhD in the dynamics of jet engines at Oxford University.

Day will join Bill Ferris, who was appointed in November as the chair of the board, and Australia's Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel, who was announced in March as deputy chair.

Also appointed to the board are professor Bronwyn Harch, executive director of the Institute for Future Environments and professor of Applied Statistics at the Queensland University of Technology; Dr Rufus Black, master of Ormond College, president of Museum Victoria, and deputy chancellor of Victoria University; and Dr Bronte Adams AM, managing director of technology-focused management consultancy firm Dandolo Partners International.

Currently, the ISA board consists of Maile Carnegie, ANZ group executive digital banking and former CEO of Google Australia & New Zealand; Scott Farquhar, co-founder and CEO of Australian startup success story Atlassian; Daniel Petre from AirTree capital ventures; Paul Bassat, co-founder of SEEK and Square Peg Capital; Dr Chris Roberts from ResMed; and Dr Michele Allan, chancellor of Charles Sturt University.

The CRC committee also received two new members on Wednesday: Professor Christobel Saunders, an internationally recognised research-orientated cancer surgeon; and Kylie Sproston, an engineer with expertise in pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and life sciences.

The CRC advisory committee is a committee of ISA, established to advise the government on recommendations for funding for CRCs, the ongoing operation of the CRC Program, and the ongoing progress and performance of individual CRCs.