Congratulations to our 2023 Crawford Fund Conference Scholars!

June 29, 2023

The Crawford Fund family with our last scholar cohort in 2022.

The Crawford Fund is proud to announce our Crawford Fund Annual Conference scholarship winners from universities and organisations across Australia, and for the second time, special guest scholars from Papua New Guinea!

These dynamic and enthusiastic recipients come from degrees and work areas involving agriculture, environmental and veterinary science, aquaculture, ecology, horticulture, economics, biology, and food security.

The Crawford Fund’s scholar program is part of our suite of  ‘nextgen’ activities to encourage students and early career researchers in their study, careers and volunteering in agriculture for development. The scholars will experience a unique learning, networking and mentoring opportunity to foster their genuine interest in international agricultural research and development.

The Conference Scholar Program has been running for over a decade supporting the next generation of Australians with an interest in food and nutrition security, and this year’s group takes the total of scholarships to over 450 since the program commenced.

The tremendous support for these highly regarded scholarships continues to grow with fantastic feedback received year after year from the scholars, their supporters and conference attendees. We are so pleased to find that many scholars pursue careers as ACIAR graduates, or working on developing country projects, or as volunteers in our own or other overseas projects.

A key component of the success of the scholar program is matching the scholars with a dedicated and experienced mentor who helps them make relevant and interesting connections at the event and shares experiences of benefit to the scholar’s research and career.

Now that we have these wonderful scholars locked in, we are seeking suitably enthusiastic mentor volunteers to impart their wisdom and guide the scholars into a long and rewarding career in international agriculture for development! If you would like to be considered as a mentor, please make sure you ‘tick the box’ to do so when you register to attend the Conference. You will be needed in Canberra by 12pm on Monday, 04 September and be on hand for your scholar through to 5pm on Tuesday, 05 September. And all those registering for the conference have the opportunity to donate to the scholar program too.

Our past scholars have found this conference scholarship experience to be both personally rewarding and professionally valuable. You can read more about these scholarships on our website, and the experiences from last year’s cohort here.

Thirty-six recipients of around 50 scholars are being supported by the Crawford Fund’s Committees, with further scholars funded by external Scholar Sponsors.

Drum Roll…

The successful 2023 Crawford Fund scholar recipients are listed below, under the Crawford Fund Committee or other institution supporting their involvement. You can read a bit more about each scholar and their interests here.


ACT Committee
Sibjan Chaulagain, Australian National University
Pravin Khambalkar, Australian National University
Rachel Nye, AusVet
Rose Zhang, Australian National University

NSW Committee
Claudio Cortellazzi, Western Sydney University
Marieke Hoelscher, Charles Sturt University
Kayla Lochner, University of New South Wales
Sally Poole, University of Sydney / Digital Ag Technologies Australia (Data Ag)
Jorge Ramos, Charles Sturt University
Matthew Roscher, University of Wollongong

NT Committee
Binyin Di, Northern Territory Farmers Association
Leif Emberg, Southern Cross University

QLD Committee
Phoebe Arbon, James Cook University
Nakita Cally, University of Queensland
Madeleine Grist, University of Queensland
Edith Kichamu, Griffith University
Jemma Restall, University of Queensland
Bethany Smith, James Cook University

SA Committee
Tayla Blight, Adelaide University
Alison Gill, The University of Adelaide
Lachlan Jaensch, The University of Adelaide
German Puga, Centre for Global Food and Resources, University of Adelaide

TAS Committee
Yashkumar Desai, University of Tasmania
Maria Ortiz, University of Tasmania – TAS Farm Innovation Hub
Sarah Roberts, University of Tasmania
Joanna Talbot, University of Tasmania
Haydn Tracey-Shaw, University Tasmania

VIC Committee
Emma Gillingham, La Trobe University
Quintin Murphy, Charles Sturt University
Louise Walker, La Trobe University
Danielle Yidan Tang, The University of Melbourne and Agriculture Victoria

WA Committee
Christophe d’Abbadie, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development WA
Harrison Keymer, The University of Western Australia
Md Shahinur Rahman, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development WA


Bisakha Dewan, School of Agriculture & Food Sciences, Uni of Queensland

Margaret Gene, Department of Agriculture & Livestock
Anna Yamanea, Department of Agriculture & Livestock

University of New England
Viet Duong
Sang Le

University of Queensland
Ming Cheng

Special Thanks

Once again, we are lucky to have members of the Researchers in Agriculture for International Development (RAID) Network to help run the scholarship activities on 04 and 06 September, and a special thank you to them all, especially Belinda Nielsen, Matt Armstrong and Jessica Fearnley.

Please contact Cathy Reade, Director of Outreach and NextGen, if you have any questions on our scholar program, mentoring or donating.