Meet the AEHRC’s health science heroes

June 26th, 2023

'We’re all just a bunch of normal people...' That's what Jess, one of our AEHRC scientists, has to say about the researchers enabling the digital transformation of healthcare.

Why don’t you decide for yourself? Watch below to find out what inspires our scientists and how they like to spend their free time.


[Music plays and several technology-related images appear inside a circle on the screen. The CSIRO logo appears from the circle. The words ‘Meet the scientists behind CSIRO’s AEHRC (Australian e-Health Research Centre)’ appear on screen in front of a blurry background with people moving across it. The words disappear and a man wearing a CSIRO shirt appears in front of a beige background.]
[A series of individual people, all in front of a beige background, clap once].
[The words ‘What got you into science?’ appear on screen]
Multiple scientists say ‘um’ or ‘ah’. Scientists reply:
1: I wanted to know how pretty much everything around me worked.
2: I think I had my first microscope when I was six, seven, something like that.
3: Always asking questions about ‘why this?’, ‘why that?’.
4: I just liked fiddling with things. Taking things apart.
5: Yeah, I really liked pulling things apart.
6: At some stage my parents stopped giving me, kind of, toys that you could actually break.
7: I think I’ve always been interested in science, since I was a child.
8: You know, animals, space…
9: Build little mechanical things with Lego.
10: The first book I really picked up was a book about sending monkeys into space.
[The words ‘So, what is it about data?’ appear.]
Scientists reply:
1: Umm.
2: Data can tell a story in so many different ways.
3: Data is the way we understand the world.
4: The thing that I love most about data is using data to inform policies and practice.
5: You can change numbers into decisions.
[The words ‘Why is AI such an important tool?’ appear]
Scientists reply:
1: Umm.
2: It can crunch a lot of data and be able to understand things that us humans have difficulty understanding.
3: It can help augment decision-making.
4: AI is not one technology. It’s literally hundreds of different technologies.
5: We will just take the benefits of the AI to improve our overall wellbeing, I guess.
[The words ‘Thoughts on chatbots?’ appear.]
Scientists reply:
1: We’re gonna have to get used to chatbots.
2: Right now they probably can be a bit frustrating.
3: Chatbots do get a bad wrap, but I think that it’s also demonstrated that it’s the best way to get people engaged and utilise AI. My favourite chatbot name, um…
2: Rad bot. Because I work in radiology. It would also be extremely rad…
3: Um… Oh, well, I mean HAL was very frightening. So not HAL.
[The words ‘What should people know about the AEHRC?’ appear.]
Scientists reply:
1: Hmm.
2: We’re all just a bunch of normal people.
3: We are also very diverse and we all have beautiful personalities.
4: Really punching above its weight in terms of international impact.
5: The fact that we work, as we say, from cells to bedside, so across the whole spectrum…
6: I’d like to believe that we’re changing healthcare, one AI algorithm at the same time.
[The words ‘What do you do in your spare time?’ appear.]
Scientists reply:
1: Um.
2: Um, currently I do burlesque dancing.
3: I like to spend time with my family.
4: ‘cause I’ve got three little kids, and… keep them entertained.
5: I play flute, I play the piano, and I sing a little bit.
2: I also do painting ― oil portraits.
5: *Singing* People to meet at that Berlin café.
6: I like to do, like, cooking.
2: Um, still life painting, I make soap…
7: I like travelling. I like camping
5: *Scatting*
8: I love hiking. I’m really into mountains.
9: When I have spare time, it’s mainly dog related.
[The words ‘Anything else?’ appear.]
Scientists reply:
1: What’s harder, wrangling data or wrangling kids? Definitely wrangling kids.
O.S: *Giggling*
2: Psychology is really cool. And emotional intelligence. That’s the thing as well, yeah.
3: If you look back in history, art is science, and science is art.
[The words ‘Are you emotionally intelligent?’ appear.]
O.S: Are you emotionally intelligent?
Scientist replies: Ah, I would love to believe that, but, uh, my partner will probably say no. *Laughs.*
[The CSIRO logo appears on a white background. ‘Australia’s National Science Agency’ is written underneath.]

Serious science goes on at CSIRO’s Australian e-Health Research Centre, but there’s more to our scientists than meets the eye.