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Professor Mark Scott, AO to lead the Group of Eight as it marks a 25th anniversary milestone

January 24, 2024

The Group of Eight (Go8) Board has appointed University of Sydney Vice Chancellor, Professor Mark Scott AO as its new Chair and reappointed its CEO, Vicki Thomson, for a further five year term.

Professor Scott, who has served as Go8 Deputy Chair since 1 February 2023 replaces former ANU Vice Chancellor and Nobel Prize winning astrophysicist Professor Brian Schmidt AC, who led the Go8 with distinction throughout the Universities Accord process.

Go8 Chief Executive Vicki Thomson said Professor Scott’s appointment will ensure the continuity of excellent leadership at the helm of the Go8 at a time when our commitment to quality research and excellence in education has never been more critical to the nation.

“He is a highly respected and successful senior leader of large and complex institutions, across public service, education and the media. He is an outstanding communicator, a former teacher and journalist, and spent a decade as Managing Director of the ABC where he led the organisation’s transformation to be a public broadcaster in the digital era.

“This coming year also marks the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the Group of Eight which I have had the privilege to lead since 2015 and will continue to do so with my reappointment,” said Ms Thomson.

Professor Scott said: “Go8 universities are the powerhouses of research in Australia and the work we do has a massive impact on our daily lives. The 25th anniversary provides an opportunity to explain that more clearly to the Australian community, so they better understand that investment in research is an investment in Australia’s future. Over the next 12 months we will highlighting how our world class research makes a world of difference.”

Ms Thomson said 2024 was a year to recognise the incredible achievements of Australian researchers and that without investment in research, our world would be vastly different.

“Not so long ago, the idea that the deaf could benefit from a bionic ear, or that cervical cancer could be prevented or eradicated were pipe dreams, but given the opportunity to explore, the inquiring minds at our research-intensive universities can and have enhanced and saved lives around Australia and the world.”

“Creating intelligent solutions to everyday problems is a core part of what defines us at the Go8. The nation’s challenges give us our direction, our research opportunities a sense of purpose, and our ability to help our communities a deep sense of pride. Australian students and researchers drive innovation and discoveries to meet tomorrow’s challenges and enhance the lives of future generations.”

Contact: Vicki Thomson, Group of Eight Chief Executive on +61 438 047 155