Submit an abstract

Abstract submissions for the 2021 Australian Biosecurity Symposium are now open!

Animal Health Australia, the Invasive Species Council, the Centre for Invasive Species Solutions and Plant Health Australia are excited to call for the submission of abstracts for presentations at the 2022 Australian Biosecurity Symposium.

The Symposium will once again focus on biosecurity prevention and provide the opportunity to share research and innovation, explore outside-of-the-box thinking and exchange knowledge and ideas across the biosecurity collective – agriculture (animals and plants), pest animals, weeds, wildlife, aquatics, humans and the environment.

Our Symposium will provide the ideal platform for cross-sectoral discussion, where new concepts are introduced, ideas are shared and tested, advice is sought and given and new partnerships are built. Challenging papers that stimulate debate and energy are encouraged – we hope you will be a part of it.

We are seeking presentations for concurrent sessions that align with the overall Symposium theme of ‘a decade of biosecurity: turning a moment into a movement’.

There are four options for presentations which you can select in the online abstract submissions form below:


Abstracts Open: Fri 9 April 2021
Abstracts Close: 5pm Fri 28 Jan 2022
Review Period: Feb-Mar 2021
Notification to author: Early 2022
Author acceptance: Early 2022
Speaker registration* due: Mon 31 Mar 2022

This format provides the ideal opportunity to present on aims, methods, relevance, results and conclusions of your work. Allocated time is 15 minutes, with a maximum of 5 minutes for discussion.

You will bring together a panel of diverse presenters who will debate an issue aligned with a Symposium theme. Discussion and interaction between panellists and delegates will be the key focus. You will put forward a minimum of three panellists and a maximum of five. Allocated time is 40 minutes for the panel session (30 mins presenting and 10 mins for Q&A – guide only).

A unique format to present your work, designed to deliver a dynamic approach! We’re encouraging people to present works in the early stages of development, and first passes of ideas. Allocated time is 7 minutes, with a maximum of 5 minutes for discussion.

A visual and interactive display of your work. Posters will be on display for the entire duration of the Symposium, with an allocated time where presenters can talk to delegates about their work.

Please note:

The invitation to submit an abstract does not constitute an offer to pay travel, accommodation or registration costs associated with the Symposium. All presenters/speaker will be able to register at the discounted speaker rate.

Conference themes

Australia’s biosecurity systems are interconnected and interdependent – livestock, plant, environment, pests, weeds, aquatic, wildlife and human. To meet the challenges facing these systems, the biosecurity collective must work together to evaluate systems performance, prioritise effort, guide investment, identify vulnerabilities and seek out opportunities to strengthen the system overall.

This theme will explore:

  • Multi-sectoral engagement and collaboration
  • System perspectives and performance (traceability, surveillance, biosecurity, etc)
  • Data and risk analysis
  • System resilience and vulnerabilities
  • Export compliance processes
  • Integration of livestock, plant, environment, pests, weeds, aquatic, wildlife, and human systems
  • A National Biosecurity Strategy

Abstracts for this topic could focus on the following question/s:

  • What should our future biosecurity system look like and how can we achieve it?
  • How can we support and encourage cross-sectoral engagement and collaboration?
  • How can we evaluate system performance, collectively prioritise effort and guide investment?
  • How do we develop a robust National Biosecurity Strategy?
  • How can we improve how biosecurity risk is measured, how can we determine an acceptable of level of risk and what is an acceptable level of residual or unmanaged risk?
  • What vulnerabilities currently exist in our systems?
  • What and how can systems be readily strengthened with new and emerging technologies and/or improved organisational arrangements that improve their efficiency and efficacy?
  • How can we better integrate the livestock, plant, environment, pests, weeds, aquatic, wildlife, and human systems?
  • What are world-leading examples of multilateral and bilateral cooperation in the biosecurity sphere?

To meet the challenges facing the biosecurity system, it’s important that we identify ways to better work together across the collective, capitalising on synergies, leveraging off capabilities and learning about what’s worked from other industries or sectors.

This theme will explore:

  • Biosecurity programs and campaigns
  • Pest and disease threats
  • Eradication
  • Prevention
  • Emergency preparedness (natural disasters, incursions)
  • New and emerging threats
  • Return on investment
  • Risk appetite

Abstracts for this topic could focus on the following question/s:

  • How do we operationalise ‘shared responsibility’ to ensure buy-in?
  • Are there any examples from other industries or overseas, where government, industry and community have worked together for mutual outcomes, that we can learn from?
  • How do we grow community understanding, influence culture and change behaviour?
  • What is the best way to scale-up great local and regional biosecurity programs?
  • How can we better tap into existing programs and initiatives?
  • How do we integrate biosecurity operations and reduce duplication of effort?
  • How can we create a formal national biosecurity partnership agreement between government, industry and the community?
  • How do we use outcomes of social science research to better understand non-compliance behaviours?
  • What improvements can be made to incentivise accurate and timely biosecurity detection reporting?
  • What can we do to make the next 10 years ‘a decade of biosecurity’?
  • What and how can pre-border treatments, post border detection and incursion response be strengthened?

Research and innovation will be fundamental in efforts to transform the national biosecurity system. A transformed national biosecurity system will be underpinned by automated, real-time digital and genetic surveillance systems supported by citizen science, big data analytics and fully integrated pre-border and post-border systems to address post-border biosecurity impacts. This theme is focused on preventative biosecurity.

This theme will explore:

  • Innovation
  • Disruption technology
  • Big data, intelligence and value
  • Commercialisation of technology
  • Border protection
  • Digitalised data
  • Game changers
  • Adoption
  • Early detection
  • Career development

Abstracts for this topic could focus on the following question/s:

  • How can Australia best drive development, investment, commercialisation and manufacture of innovation technologies for biosecurity?
  • How do we design an innovation-centred biosecurity system?
  • What are new, emerging and over the horizon technologies that could be applied to transform or strengthen our biosecurity system?
  • Where are the best short to medium opportunities that are no brainers to pursue?
  • What are new and emerging technologies in other fields (such as health, insurance) that could be readily applied in the biosecurity sphere?
  • How can we support the implementation or application of new technologies?
  • How can we promote career development and training of biosecurity-relevant specialists and researchers?
  • Effective application of new and emerging technologies depends on strategic and structured pathways to adoption. What are case studies that illustrate best practice, accelerated adoption of new technologies and systems?

Community and industry engagement is critical to any successful biosecurity system. While each of us has a role in the biosecurity system, this role and its benefits may not be well understood. Tackling the biosecurity challenges of the future will not be possible without significant community and industry effort.

This theme will explore:

  • Insights from other sectors (such as health, marketing, etc)
  • Community initiatives (public and private sector)
  • Indigenous engagement
  • Industry engagement
  • Citizen science
  • Drivers of behaviour change
  • Cultural change
  • Social and behavioural science

Abstracts for this topic could focus on the following question/s:

  • How do we make the biosecurity message more relevant and relatable to everyone?
  • How can we help local councils, community groups and organisations play a greater role in driving community awareness?
  • How can Australia make biosecurity engagement with indigenous communities a more systemic process of the system?
  • How can robust and verifiable citizen science programs help engage and empower the public, to support biosecurity prevention?
  • How do we leverage off other biosecurity incidents to further increase awareness?
  • How do we better celebrate exemplary groups and individuals in the biosecurity space?
  • How can we support new biosecurity champions and groups to emerge?
  • How do we educate people early on the benefits of biosecurity?
  • How do we develop a platform to allow for sharing insights, analysis, and research on innovative and successful biosecurity initiatives, so that people can access biosecurity information in their areas of interest?
  • How can the barriers to participation be removed and the incentives to prompt action be applied to support community and industry action?
  • How can we develop a single point of truth for all stakeholders?
  • What can we learn about engagement and behaviour change from other sectors, industries, or overseas programs?

Submission guidelines

Please read the below guidelines carefully:

  • Submit electronically using the form below or email ( as a word document.
  • Indicate your industry sector.
  • Indicate the theme your presentation best fits into.
  • Indicate if an oral, panel, speed or poster presentation.
  • Abstracts that are uploaded electronically must be done in a word document (.doc or .docx) format.
  • Presentation title to be 15 words or less.
  • Abstract to be 300 words or less.
  • Author/s names and affiliations; if multiple authors (i.e. Panel presentation) indicate lead contact.
  • Author/s biography to be 100 words or less; if multiple authors include all biographies, email address/es and primary contact number.
  • The Symposium Technical Committee will have the final say on all abstracts submitted.

Download the example abstract template

Submit your abstract



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