Professor Bronwyn Laycock is a polymer scientist whose research seeks to address some of the challenges around global sustainability and planetary boundaries, such as plastics sustainability, nutrient recovery and efficiency, as well as plastics lifetime and impact estimation and end-of-life management.
She has a diverse background in translational research, working not only in academia but also in industry and as a consulting chemist, as well as at CSIRO. The application areas in her research program include biopolymers (particularly polyhydroxyalkanoates and other bioderived and biodegradable materials for packaging, film and other applications), polymer degradation and end-of-life management/conversion technologies, biocomposites, controlled release matrixes for pesticide and fertiliser applications, polyurethane chemistry, polymer foams, carbon nanofibre production and peptide based conducting nanowires.
She has a strong history of successful commercialisation and impact, being a co-inventor on CSIRO’s extended wear contact lens program (recognised as it fourth most significant invention) – for which she was awarded a joint CSIRO Medal for Research Achievement 2009. As a Project Leader and Deputy Program Leader within the CRC for Polymers, she also managed a project that delivered an oxodegradable thin film polyethylene that was commercially licenced by Integrated Packaging.
This work earned the team a Joint Chairman’s Award for research/commercialization (CRC for Polymers) and an Excellence in Innovation Award (CRC Association). She holds 14 patents, and has attracted more than $12.2M in grant funding since 2013.