The mainstream media is the most important source of information on science and technology for the Australian public, and yet the relationship between scientists and the media is often fraught and difficult. The AusSMC exists to support both scientists and journalists to ensure that the public has access to the best scientific evidence and expertise.
The idea to set up an Australian Science Media Centre (AusSMC) came from the Adelaide Thinkers in Residence program. The AusSMC is based on the successful UK Science Media Centre that was established in London in 2002.
The AusSMC was established as an independent, not-for-profit organisation in late 2005. The Centre is housed in the old Adelaide Stock Exchange building, refurbished and renamed the Science Exchange. The AusSMC is now one of eight international SMCs (UK, Australia, NZ, Canada, Germany, Taiwan, Africa and Spain).
In response to a demand from journalists, the AusSMC launched a breaking science news portal, Scimex.org (Science Media Exchange) in 2015 to provide the media with access to scientific expertise, independent expert reaction, multimedia and research stories from Australia and NZ. Scimex is now used by 1,700 journalists and distributes more than 3,000 stories each year.