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A Culture of Collaboration

A key objective of AgriBio – the Centre for AgriBioscience - is research collaboration between the Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI) and La Trobe University (LTU) staff and students, leading to high quality, high impact science outcomes.

Research teams from DEPI and LTU in AgriBio are led by Professor German Spangenberg, Director AgriBio (DEPI) and Professor Shaun Collin, Director AgriBio (LTU), respectively.

Professor German Spangenberg Photo

Professor German Spangenberg, FTSE

Executive Director, Biosciences Research Division
Victorian Department of Environment and Primary Industries

After completing a MSc (Agricultural Sciences) at the University of Uruguay, Uruguay and PhD from the University of Heidelberg and Max-Planck-Institute of Cell Biology in Heidelberg, Germany, Professor Spangenberg undertook postdoctoral studies at the Max-Planck-Institute of Cell Biology and the Institute of Plant Sciences at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zuerich, Switzerland.

He has held positions as Assistant Professor and Associate Professor at the ETH Zuerich where he obtained his DSc in AgriBiotechnology, before joining the Department of Primary Industries (DPI), Victoria where he held positions as Director, Plant Biotechnology Centre and Research Director, Plant Genetics & Genomics. Professor Spangenberg is currently Executive Director, Biosciences Research Division, DEPI, and Professor Plant Genetics & Genomics with La Trobe University. He is also Chief Scientist of the Dairy Futures Cooperative Research Centre; Director and Chief Scientific Officer of the agricultural biotechnology company Phytogene Pty Ltd and Chief Scientific Officer of the agricultural biotechnology company Gramina Pty Ltd.

He has a strong record of research in agricultural biotechnology. He was elected Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering in 2007 for his inspiring and innovative research in agricultural biotechnology and as a world leader in pasture plant genomics and gene technology. He was the recipient of the Australian Thinker of Year 2006 Award in recognition of his world class innovations in pasture plant genomics and biotechnology and his leadership in bringing these innovations to the marketplace for the benefit of the wider community and temperate grassland agriculture worldwide.

German is currently President of the International Association for Plant Biotechnology.

Professor Shaun Collin Photo

Professor Shaun Collin

Dean, Life Sciences.
Co-Director, Agribio, Office of Life Sciences.

Professor Shaun P. Collin is the Dean and Head of the School of Life Sciences and the Co-Director of the AgriBioscience Centre at La Trobe University. He heads a large Neuroecology Group that investigates the neural basis of behaviour in both invertebrates and vertebrates, with special emphasis on sensory systems and vision. He spent appreciable periods of time in Canada, the United States, Germany and Australia on a range of prestigious Research Fellowships (ARC QEII, Fulbright, Alexander von Humboldt, Grass) before he joined The University of Queensland as a Professor and Head of the School of Biomedical Sciences where he was for 10 years. He then joined The University of Western Australia as a WA Premiers Fellow within the School of Animal Biology and the Oceans Graduate School. He was then appointed the Director of the Oceans Institute.

He took up a new appointment at La Trobe University in 2019. Using a range of cutting-edge techniques, his group investigates the impacts of environmental cues (light, odors, electric fields and sound) on the biodiversity, sustainability, welfare and behaviour of animals in a diversity of habitats. Prof. Collin has published over 300 papers including 13 books/Edited Journal Issues, 27 Book Chapters, 235 journal articles, 15 films/documentaries/exhibitions and 11 Government Reports and sits on the Editorial Boards of 5 international journals. He has previously sat on the College of Experts Panel and was the Chair of the Biological Sciences and Biotechnology Panel for the Australian Research Council and has close associations with both the WA and Victorian State Governments.

©  State Government of Victoria 1996-2013
Page last updated: 24-May-2021