The Australian Council of Learned Academies (ABN 18 625 939 540) is an independent organisation that supports evidence-based interdisciplinary research, with its history dating back to 1970.
The Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA) is the forum whereby Australia’s Learned Academies – Australian Academy of the Humanities, Australian Academy of Science, Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia, Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering and the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences, come together to contribute expert advice to inform national policy; and to develop innovative solutions to complex global problems and emerging national needs.
Through its various organisational structures, ACOLA has produced reports, convened symposia and workshops, provided countless expert briefings and undertaken policy reviews. It commenced in September 1970 when the then two Learned Academies (AAS and AAH) and the Social Science Research Council (the precursor to the Academy often Social Science in Australia) came together to establish the Consultative Committee of the Australian Academies (CCAA). It became an unincorporated association in 1995, as the National Academies Forum.
In 2010, the organisation had a name change to the Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA Council), and established a Secretariat (ACOLA Secretariat Ltd) to support its operations.
In 2017, the ACOLA Council embarked on a significant governance review, which led to the establishment in May 2018 of the current entity. ACOLA is an established Australian Research Institute as approved by the Australian Government Department of Education; is a registered charity with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission; and holds Deductible Gift Recipient status with the Australian Taxation Office.
More than 3,500 of the nation’s most eminent scientists, researchers, scholars and practitioners contribute to this rich source of expert knowledge.