Archive for March, 2014

CSIRO to axe a quarter of its workforce

Posted on March 17, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized |

The following article appeared in the Canberra Times over the weekend.  The staff facing job cuts have our utmost empathy as many of us ‘victims’ have been subjected to the CSIRO’s dehumanising “spill and fill” redundancy procedures, many after reporting problems or lodging complaints within the organisation!

It is probably too much to hope that those engaging in misconduct or serious misconduct will be the first to be cut.

One correction that needs to be made to article below is that senior executive positions are safe.  None of the current group or senior executives are being “liquidated”, other than those who have already chosen to leave the organisation.

Despite the spin which CSIRO will inevitably place the loss of executive positions, not refilling vacant positions (i.e. senior executive positions) is vastly different to sacking other staff.

We wonder how many jobs might have been saved but for the CSIRO’s exorbitant PR exercise in its sham investigation exercise which has become so diluted that it is unlikely to result in a single employee facing misconduct charges…

CSIRO support staff next to face 1600 job cuts

Date: March 15, 2014

Noel Towell, Bridie Smith, Nicky Phillips

 Hundreds more job cuts are looming at Australia’s peak science organisation the CSIRO as it pushes through its biggest restructure in decades.

The organisation sacked its legal team in Melbourne this week, losing lawyers who have protected the organisation’s scientific patents for decades. The axe is expected to fall again among 1600 scientific support staff.

Management confirmed more cuts on Friday, but said it could not provide numbers.

In more bad news for government science jobs, private suppliers are already trying to poach specialists from the Defence Materiel Organisation in Canberra amid widespread expectations that much of procurement group will be privatised – with the loss of up to 3000 jobs.

Defence Minister David Johnston fuelled speculation on Friday that the government would boost private sector involvement in defence purchasing after its Commission of Audit reports.

Heads are also expected to roll among the CSIRO’s executive ranks. with the chiefs of 22 divisions and flagships vying for just nine jobs.

Read more:

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CSIRO Investigation questioned at Senate Estimates.

Posted on March 3, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Questions were raised in relation to the CSIRO Investigation into bullying and other misconduct by Greens Senator, the Hon. Penny Wright during the Senate Estimates Economics Committee Hearing on 27 February 2014.  The video can be viewed here:

We note that the responses of Dr Clark were as effusive as ever.

In relation to the declaration that “the Investigator would not be making any determinations of bullying“, Dr Clark failed to disclose to Senator Wright that this decision only became evident late last year (December 2013) via yet another change slipped into the original Terms of Reference for the investigation which continue to be manipulated to the benefit of the CSIRO and the detriment of victims of workplace bullying.

It is hard to take seriously an investigation where the goal posts are constantly shifting and where a significant number of participants have reported to us that their complaints have largely been rewritten to effectively exclude mishandling by CSIRO management or have been denied investigation based upon a range of spurious grounds, which arguably have little or nothing to do with the nature of the investigation.

There is absolutely no recourse available to participants in which to challenge the validity of such determinations.

From the very outset of this investigation, it has been quite clear that the Terms of Reference have been drafted so as to exclude as many participants as possible from the investigation process.

More recently, the highly selective process of determining which complaints or select elements of complaints are to be investigated and to what extent they will be investigated (if at all) gives rise to considerable concern over what the investigation team is actually able to investigation.

Considering that the Investigator is not even empowered to make a determination on what IS or IS NOT bullying, despite the CSIRO’s clear policies on such matters, we are seriously left wondering what it is that the investigation team is actually tasked to do, other than to perpetuate the myth that the CSIRO is actually doing something to address  the problems of workplace bullying within the organisation, which it is clearly not!

We note that despite nearly 12 months of investigation and the engagement of a former Commonwealth Ombudsman, the Victims of CSIRO continue to receive a large number of complaints in relation to contemporary bullying issues.

The continued lack of stakeholder engagement is palpable…

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