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Funded by Business Events Perth, The University of Western Australia Aspire Award is one $5,000 scholarship that will be presented to a UWA staff member to assist in their personal and professional development through attendance at a relevant international conference in their chosen field of endeavour. Award recipients have up to 3 years to use the funds.

2020 University of Western Australia Aspire Award Winner, Dr Sae Chi

Transport economics researcher Dr Sae Chi will attend an international conference in her field thanks to the Business Events Perth Aspire Awards and The University of Western Australia.

Business Events Perth has been running the Aspire Awards Program for 21 years and over that time the program has sponsored hundreds of local academics and researchers to attend a relevant international conference in their discipline, to further their professional development and profile Western Australia on the international stage.

Business Events Perth Chief Executive Officer Gareth Martin said he was delighted to be able to support the ongoing professional development of such an outstanding individual whose work has a direct impact on the day to day lives of Western Australians.

“Attending business events like conferences help experts like Dr Chi collaborate and exchange knowledge with others in their field and also showcase the expertise of Western Australia on an international stage,” Mr Martin said. 

As one of the only researchers in Australia specialising in the field of transport economics, Dr Chi’s research focusses on cost-benefit analyses of transport projects to ensure that planning decisions bring overall economic benefits, which requires her to be knowledgeable in both economics and engineering, as well as being an expert in transport.

Dr Chi plans to use the award to attend the International Transportation Economics Association Conference and School.

“Attending this conference will allow me to meet well-established researchers from all around the world, attend their lectures and tutorials, learn from the world’s best researchers, see the latest research findings and network with other fellow researchers in the field,” Dr Chi said.

UWA Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Simon Biggs said the efficient use of transport was a significant issue globally.

“Dr Chi’s work will contribute greatly to a better understanding of infrastructure needs, the effective use of transport, the cost benefit analysis and a whole range of topics that are important to the economic health of Australia,” Professor Biggs said.