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Dr Alex Held

Director, Centre For Earth Observation


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GPO BOX 1700


Dr. Held is currently the Director of the Centre for Earth Observation of the CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science Business Unit, and Lead of the AquaWatch Mission. Alex is a Co-Chair of the international Committee on Earth Observation Satellites Strategic Implementation Team (CEOS SIT), and the Lead for CSIRO's AquaWatch Mission. Alex is also serving as the co-lead of the "Landscapes Assessment" facility of Australia’s “Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network” – TERN, which provides free and open access to various satellite-derived products for ecosystem science and land management. Previously he served as Head of COSSA (the CSIRO Office of Space Science and Applications) from 2004 -December 2007, representing Australia at several space-related international committees, and served as member of the National Committee for Space Science of the Australian Academy of Science. He was part of the team which held the 2016 Chair of the international Committee on Earth Observation Satellites – CEOS. He is a plant physiologist from the University of California, Davis, and has been linking remote sensing and vegetation mapping at CSIRO since arriving in Australia 29 years ago.

Current Roles

  • Director
    Centre for Earth Observation - CASS

  • Group on Earth Observation
    Executive Committee Member/Observer - for CEOS

  • Principal
    Committee on Earth Observation Satellites

  • Co-Lead
    TERN Landscapes

  • Associate Professor
    Fenner School - Australian National University

Academic Qualifications

  • 1989

    PhD - Plant Physiology
    UC Davis

  • 1985

    MSc - Plant Physiology
    UC Davis

Professional Experiences

  • 1981-1982

    Research Assistant

  • 1989-1991

    Stanford University

  • 1991-1996

    Research Scientist
    CSIRO Water Resources

  • 1996-2004

    Group Leader
    CSIRO Water Resources

  • 2004-2007

    CSIRO Office of Space Science and Applications

  • 2008-2014

    Team Leader
    CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research

Achievements and Awards

  • 2003

    CSIRO Look Out

  • 2003-2003

    Outstanding Service
    Defence Intelligence and Geospatial Organisation (DIGO)

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