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Thursday / June 20.
HomeminewsWestern Australia the Pick for Ophthalmic Researchers

Western Australia the Pick for Ophthalmic Researchers

Western Australia is proving to be at the centre of ophthalmic research, attracting leading academics to high profile positions.

In April 2022, Professor Allison McKendrick was appointed Lions Eye Institute University of Western Australia Chair in Optometry Research. Prof McKendrick was previously the Head of the Department of Optometry and Vision Sciences, University of Melbourne, since April 2014.

He will help to drive the research agenda and facilitate the translation of research knowledge into policy and practice

This month, Professor Andrew Turpin has been appointed as the inaugural Lions Curtin Chair in Ophthalmic Big Data. A global leader in data science and analytics, Professor Turpin, is currently Senior Academic Convenor of the Petascale Campus Initiative, at the University of Melbourne and Director of the Melbourne Data Analytics Platform (MDAP). He will commence in his new role in Perth in November this year.

An international search is now under way to fill the Ian Constable Chair in Discovery and Translational Ophthalmic Science.

Driving AI, Image Analysis and Computation

Professor Andrew Turpin, inaugural Lions Curtin Chair in Ophthalmic Big Data.

The Lions Curtin Chair in Ophthalmic Big Data has been established by the Lions Eye Institute and Curtin, with support from the Lions Save-Sight Foundation WA Inc (LSSFWA), to enhance leadership and research in ophthalmic big data. The Chair will build on experience in computer science, image analysis and computation involving large datasets, including data interpretation assisted by artificial intelligence methods. The position is jointly funded by Curtin and LSSFWA.

Professor Bill Morgan, Managing Director of the Lions Eye Institute, said the appointment would contribute to Western Australia’s burgeoning reputation as a centre for research excellence in ocular disease.

“Professor Turpin will bring deep expertise that will further develop the Institute’s and Curtin’s work in artificial intelligence, image analysis, Indigenous, rural and remote eye health, and data linkage,” Professor Morgan said. “He will help to drive the research agenda and facilitate the translation of research knowledge into policy and practice.”
Professor Turpin’s research interests include computational problems in human vision, in particular, developing new techniques for diagnosing and monitoring glaucoma. Through his new Chair role, he will undertake internationally competitive research, build new capacity in analytics across optometry and ophthalmology, support research and eye care systems development involving large and continuous related datasets.

Professor Archie Clements, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Faculty of Health Sciences at Curtin, said he was delighted to welcome Professor Turpin to Curtin University and Western Australia. “Professor Turpin’s extensive academic leadership experience will be critical for lifting data science research in the State, with a focus on eye health, an area of significant need here in WA. Our partnership with the Lions Eye Institute has been incredibly exciting and we look forward to Professor Turpin building on the momentum we have created in eye health research,” Professor Clements said.

Professor Turpin said, “I am looking forward to the opportunities that the combined resources of the Lions Eye Institute, Curtin and Western Australia will bring to improve patient outcomes using data and computational techniques.”