Our Corporate Plan

Corporate Plan 2018-19 to 2021-22


Chief Executive Officer's foreword

Geoscience Australia has been the nation's trusted advisor on the geological and geographical history of Australia since 1946. At that time, the Australian Government recognised the need to locate and assess the nation's natural resources, and undertake fundamental mapping work for national development and growth. Separate agencies undertook this work for more than 50 years before joining in 2001 to form Geoscience Australia, bringing together the nation's expertise in geology, geophysics, geodesy, satellite imagery, and topographic mapping.

Today, our work covers the Australian continent, Australia's marine jurisdiction, and Australia's territories in Antarctica. We apply our geoscientific capabilities to the opportunities and challenges that face the nation: maximising value from our abundant minerals and energy resources; providing the fundamental geographic information to develop the nation; sustainably managing a vast marine environment; securing water on a dry continent; protecting communities from natural disasters; and operating an integrated network of geophysical observatories to collect and distribute nationally beneficial data and information.

Statement of preparation

As the accountable authority of Geoscience Australia, I am pleased to present Geoscience Australia's 2018-19 Corporate Plan covering the four-year period to 2021-22, as required under section 35(1)(b) of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013.


Dr James Johnson
Chief Executive Officer
16 August 2018


Strategic Direction


Geoscience Australia is the nation's trusted advisor on the geology and geography of Australia. We apply science and technology to the opportunities and challenges that face the nation.

Our purpose is to provide information and capabilities to support government, industry and the community to make decisions and improve economic, environmental and social outcomes for the nation.

Strategic Priorities and Objectives

To achieve our purpose, our work is delivered through six key strategic priorities:

Each strategic priority area is supported by a number of activities that form the foundation of the organisation's ongoing portfolio of work.

Financial Management

Geoscience Australia is committed to meeting whole-of-government priorities and ensuring the provision of services is as efficient and well-targeted as possible. In this context, Geoscience Australia is improving operational efficiencies, reducing administrative overheads and delivering services within a governance framework that demonstrates the benefits and value of the organisation's work.

GEOSCIENCE AUSTRALIA: Comprehensive income statement
(source: 2018-19 Portfolio Budget Statements)
Forward estimate
Forward estimate
Forward estimate
Employee benefits 77,627 78,213 77,921 77,921
Suppliers 150,295 156,127 147,730 148,390
Depreciation and amortisation 8,250 9,237 9,988 10,550
Other expenses 20 20 20 20
Total expenses 236,192 243,597 235,659 236,881
Sale of goods and rendering of services 40,089 40,089 40,089 40,089
Other 138 140 142 144
Total own-source revenue 40,227 40,229 40,231 40,197
Net (cost of)/contribution by services (195,965) (203,368) (195,428) (196,684)
Revenue from Government (Appropriation) 184,381 191,511 183,555 185,008
Total comprehensive income/(loss) (11,584) (11,857) (11,873) (11,676)

Geoscience Australia Overview

Geoscience Australia is a non-corporate Commonwealth entity within the Industry, Innovation and Science portfolio.

Stakeholders and Partnerships

Geoscience Australia works in partnership with governments, industry, publicly funded research agencies and academia to provide specialist expertise and information to support the delivery of Australian Government services.

Its collaboration with Australian Government, non-government, and international partner organisations is highly successful, with 91 per cent of stakeholders either satisfied or extremely satisfied with our overall performance.


Geoscience Australia has a highly educated and skilled workforce, spanning a number of specialist areas, including:

  • Geoscientists such as geologists, geophysicists, geochronologists and geochemists
  • Spatial professionals such as cartographers, surveyors and remote sensing experts
  • Data management professionals
  • Educators and science communicators
  • ICT specialists including experts in high performance data and computing, mathematics, engineers, graphic designers
  • Corporate and management professionals including human resource, finance and communication specialists.

Geoscience Australia has as average staffing level of 600. Results of the last Australian Public Service Employee Census provided results of a highly satisfied, motivated, experienced and qualified workforce.

Information Communications Technology

Geoscience Australia's Information Communications Technology (ICT) vision brings together the best of ICT and the best of geoscience and geospatial developments that will deliver optimal outcomes. This vision extends beyond the boundaries of Geoscience Australia to emerging national research and cloud infrastructures that include data, compute, storage, software, networks and people.

To view the full ICT strategy please visit Geoscience Australia's website at http://www.ga.gov.au/about/corporate-documents.

Risk Management

The management of risk within the organisation is in accordance with the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 and the Commonwealth Risk Management Framework and is consistent with AS/NZS ISO 31000:2009 Risk management - Principles and guidelines.

Geoscience Australia undertakes periodic risk workshops and reviews on risk management. The effective application of risk management improves decision making and facilitates better outcomes for the Australian Government.