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Dr Michael Battaglia


Research Director


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Contact details:

GPO BOX 1538


Research Director, Sustainability

As Research Director I lead work that looks at agricultural sustainability and science to adapt agri-food systems to environmental, market and social change. Within this role I manage a portfolio of projects of $30M ($16M revenue) and 78 staff and affiliates. I manage the careers and welfare of CSIRO’s staff working in this area. I am a founder and a Board Director for FutureFeed, a company that is commercializing anti-methanogenic seaweed to tackle livestock emissions.

In previous roles I have led (as Theme Leader) CSIRO’s forestry work, and acted as Deputy Flagship Leader for the $70M Agriculture Flagship responsible for Science Quality and Impact Planning. Prior to this role I led CSIRO’s and briefly the combine CSIRO and Scion New Zealand’s forestry and the environment capability.
Within CSIRO I actively contribute as a research scientist, particularly in the areas of forest vulnerability assessment, adaptation to climate change and in systems modelling, and my current roles in use of ICT to catalyse land sector participation in carbon farming (both through the 3EAC activity with Macquarie Bank and through input and guidance into the Digiscape Carbon Project). I provide governance to a number of national and international bodies including the $400M CRP GLDC, the Australian-Vietanm Aus4Innovation project looking to increase the innovation capacity and innovation absorptive capacity of the Vietnamese innovation system, a member of the reference group for the National GHG inventory system for Australia.
I am an active participant in corporate change processes, for example being a Business Unit representative (and mentor to the leader) of the Inclusion and Diversity Committee (and having co-led the development of and the set up of the Inclusive Leader training program), and having been at the vanguard on a range of Launchpad and Accelerator programs within CSIRO, as designer, advocate, mentor and even participant. I have helped catalyse some of CSIRO’s new capability directions, for example the move 6 years ago by CSIRO Agriculture and Food into Digital Agriculture (advocated the establishment and was a founding member of the initial committee), helped design Digiscape, and more generally I am valued for a role in science trend analysis and disruptive science framing .

1995 - Present – CSIRO Australia
2017- current Research Director, Board Director FutureFeed
2014-2017 Group Leader Climate Smart Agriculture
2013-2014 Deputy Director, Sustainable Agriculture Flagship
2009-2013 Theme Leader Greenhouse Gas abatement and carbon storage in Australian Landuse systems and member of Sustainable Agriculture Flagship Executive: lead CSIRO’s work in agricultural greenhouse gas mitigation and rural carbon storage
2008-2009 Theme Leader 1171 Sustaining Australia’s Forest Ecosystem Resources: lead CSIRO science in forest production and environmental services, including CSIRO’s forest genetics and forestry for development work
2006-2008 Theme Leader 1073 Forest Fibre Production Systems, member of Division of Forest Biosciences Leadership team
2005-2008 Program Manager CRC Forestry, Program 1 Managing and Monitoring and member of the CRC Forestry Management Committee
2005-2006 Stream Leader Planning and Production Systems in Forest Benefits theme
2003-2005 Theme Leader Precision Plantation Solutions, this role was different than the current Theme leader role and combined science strategy and people management
1995-2003 Research Scientist
1993 - 1995 – University of Tasmania
1994-1995 Australian Research Council Post-doctoral Research Fellow
1993-1994 Post-doctoral Research Fellow
1987 - 1992 – Forest Commission Tasmania

• Director FutureFeed
• CSIRO representative, Knowledge Systems for Sustainability consortium
• Platform Director, Terrestrial Ecosystems Research Network
• Independent Advisor CRP Dryland Grains and Legumes
• Management committee for CSIRO-TIA postgraduate program in Systems Agriculture
• Steering Committee for Warra Long Term Ecological Research Site
• Steering Committee for National Livestock Methane Cluster 2012-present
• Steering Committee National Nitrous Oxide Programme 2012-2014
• Steering Committee Primary Industry Standing Committee, Climate Change Research Strategy for Primary Industries
• Member of General Assembly of TRANZFOR consortia: climate change and forests, consortia between France, United Kingdom, Portugal, New Zealand and Australia. This is an international cooperation under the Madam Curie Fund to mobilise international cooperation of the pressing needs for adaptation actions in the area of climate change and forestry 2008-2013
• Program Manager and Management committee member of CRC Forestry 2003-2008.

Other Interests

Rockclimbing, mountain biking, running, bushwalking, reading, following the comical efforts of the Richmond AFL side

Academic Qualifications

  • 2007

    Auckland University, Business school 'Excelerator' Leadership Programme

  • 2009

    Certificate in Executive Management and Development, Australian Graduate School of Management, University New South Wales

  • 1994

    PhD University of Tasmania

  • 1984

    Bachelor of Forest Science (First class honours) University Melbourne

Professional Experiences

  • 1995-present


  • 1994-1995

    ARC Junior Reserach Fellow: Ecology of mixed species forests
    University Tasmania

Achievements and Awards

  • 2009

    One CSIRO Award


  • 2013-2014

    Future forests for a high CO2 world


We have publications by Dr Michael Battaglia