At CSIRO, we do the extraordinary every day. We innovate for tomorrow and help improve today – for our customers, all Australians and the world.

Our value to the Australian economy is massive. Even just considering six CSIRO contributions, the Australian economy reaps $5 billion a year in benefits from the Australian Animal Health Laboratory, our work in cotton, our longwall mining technology, our Opticool energy control system, our Novacq prawn feed, and our water resource assessment work.

With more than 1,800 patents, we are Australia’s largest patent holder. This ever-increasing wealth of intellectual property is a vast source of commercial opportunity and has already resulted in more than 150 spin-off companies, with many more to come.

For around a century we have been pushing the boundaries of what is possible in science and technology. Our world-renowned successes include WiFi, the Hendra vaccine and polymer banknotes. But it’s tomorrow’s innovations that excite us – wearable technology that alerts a doctor when you are sick, diets based on your DNA and so much more.

With more than 5,000 experts based in 55 centres, extensive local and international networks, and a burning desire to get things done, we are Australia’s catalyst for innovation and a global force in transforming imagination into reality.

We collaborate with 3,000 customers each year, including Australian federal, state and local government bodies; small, medium and large businesses; the majority of Research Development Corporations, Cooperative Research Centres and Australian universities, and more than 150 international partners. 

The quality of our research underpins our ability to innovate. Our research is trusted; our discoveries are published in world-leading journals and globally, we are in the top one per cent in 15 of 22 research fields.

Everything we do is focused on creating measurable economic, environmental and social benefits that better our world and Australia’s place in it.

Our formation

We're an Australian Government corporate entity, with a Board and Chief Executive. We're constituted by and operate under the provisions of the Science and Industry Research Act 1949 , which sets out our functions and powers, as well as those of our Minister, Board and Chief Executive. The governance, performance and accountability of our operations, including the use and management of public resources are set out in the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 and related rules.

The Science and Industry Research Act 1949 defines our purpose and the functions we undertake for the benefit of Australia:

  • To carry out scientific research for any of the following purposes:
    • Assisting Australian industry;
    • Furthering the interests of the Australian community;
    • Contributing to the achievement of Australian national objectives or the performance of the national and international responsibilities of the Commonwealth; and
    • Any other purpose determined by the Minister;
  • To encourage or facilitate the application or utilisation of the results of such research.

Our secondary functions include international scientific liaison, training of research workers, publication of research results, technology transfer of other research, provision of scientific services and dissemination of information about science and technology.

We operate through three lines of business:

  • Impact science: Nine national research business units with focus on the biggest challenges facing the nation.
  • National Facilities and Collections: We manage infrastructure and biological collections for the benefit of research and industry.
  • CSIRO Services: Commercial, customer-centric products and services for industry, government and the community.

CSIRO. We imagine. We collaborate. We innovate.

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Have a question? Contact us using the form below, or call 1300 363 400 during business hours .

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