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Information for Research Providers contracted to LWA

The Australian Government has announced that as part of the 2009-10 Budget it will be abolishing Land & Water Australia. The Corporation’s Board and management are shocked and devastated by this decision, and we know these feelings are shared by many of our partners and researchers. This is particularly so given LWA’s reputation as one of Australia’s key public good environmental research funding organisations.

LWA is currently considering the implications of this decision, including the terms of its current agreements and the effect of the relevant provisions of the Primary Industries and Energy Research Development Act 1989, pursuant to which LWA is established.

In that context LWA is developing a plan for the wind-up or transfer of the Projects presently administered by LWA.

LWA has secured limited funding for the financial year 2009-10. This funding will enable LWA to meet all staff entitlements and to establish a small wind-up team to facilitate the completion of the wind-up of LWA’s affairs.

LWA also anticipates being able to fund a small number of high priority existing Projects through to completion. LWA is currently endeavouring to determine which ongoing research may be of sufficient priority as to be supported by the limited funding available. We are also seeking to determine which entities may be willing to take over the management of existing contracts.

LWA is not currently in a position where it can guarantee ongoing financial support for any particular Project in the next financial year.

Over the next few weeks LWA will advise individual research providers of the outcome of its deliberations with respect to each Project. LWA is aiming to maximise the outcomes from as many of its existing investments as possible. However, most regrettably, a number of very worthwhile Projects will have to be terminated as a result of the abolition of LWA. Others might be continued under the administration of another entity (whether in the current, or some amended, form).

LWA greatly appreciates the support and positive responses we have received from so many friends since the news became public. If you have any thoughts that you would like to pass on regarding LWA please send them to Executive Director Dr Michael Robinson (, who will collate and pass these on the Board and staff (as appropriate).

We very much understand the impact that the Government’s decision to abolish LWA may have on other organisations and individuals.

LWA urges research providers and others to consider any employment opportunities for the passionate and professional staff of LWA. Many of these skilled employees are facing the prospect of being without work in the coming months given the short notice of this decision.

Dr Michael Robinson
Executive Director