Australian Government - Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) Annual Report 2004-05.  Meeting stakeholder needs through cooperative innovation
Home Contents Vision, Mission & Corporate Values 2004 -05 Highlights Letter of transmittal Contact details
Part 1 - Overview Part 2 - Our outputs Part 3 - Our organisation Part 4 - Financial statements Appendices Glossary

Part 3: Our Organisation

Corporate governance

The GRDC places high value on continuously improving the organisation's corporate governance, and made substantial advances in this area during the past year. In particular:

  • when considering proposals the Board and the Executive Management Team (EMT) closely examined risks associated with new ventures
  • the performance of the GRDC Board was reviewed by expert consultants, who found that the Board had clearly developed a more strategic focus.

Policies and procedures

In continuously improving the GRDC's corporate governance, the corporation is guided by the Australian National Audit Office's Guidelines for Best Practice Corporate Governance.

The GRDC Operating Manual, which is available to the Board and all staff members, describes the corporation's:

  • policies and procedures
  • roles and responsibilities (including those of the Board and board committees)
  • Code of Business Conduct and Ethical Behaviour
  • approval authority schedule, which includes delegations
  • general guidelines
  • management manual.

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Risk management and fraud

The EMT, in consultation with managers, regularly updates the Business Risk Assessment Report and the Fraud Control Action Plan. The Board reviews these documents at each Board meeting. Risk management has been embraced throughout the GRDC as a tool to assess risks at the strategic, operational and project levels.

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Quality assurance

The GRDC's Quality Management System has ISO 9001:2000 quality assurance accreditation from SGS International Certification Services Pty Ltd. In 2005-06 the GRDC will seek to make greater use of quality assurance as a tool for continuous improvement.

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Indemnities and insurance premiums for officers

GRDC officers, including members of the Board, are insured by the GRDC against various liabilities that they may incur in their capacity as officers of the corporation. Since 31 January 1999, Comcover, the Australian Government's self-managed fund for insurance risks, has provided the necessary insurance cover. The Comcover insurance contract prohibits the GRDC from disclosing the nature or limit of the liabilities covered or the amount of premiums payable.

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Environmental objectives

The GRDC is required to report annually on its performance in relation to ecologically sustainable development (ESD) and other environmental matters discussed in section 516A of the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).

The principles of ESD have been incorporated into the decision-making systems and processes of the GRDC, as required under the EPBC Act. The corporation has in place paper-recycling arrangements and, where operationally viable, purchases energy-efficient equipment. Energy efficient practices are encouraged within the corporation's premises, to reduce energy consumption wherever possible.

At the strategic level, Driving Innovation articulates the GRDC's vision for an Australian grains industry that is both profitable and environmentally sustainable. The corporation aims to balance its investments to provide long and short-term economic environmental benefits for its stakeholders. Part 2 - Our Outputs includes a discussion of how GRDC investments helped to achieve environmental objectives in 2004-05.

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Privacy Commissioner

The GRDC's privacy policy and procedures form part of the Operating Manual.

The GRDC's annual Personal Information Digest entry as at 30 June 2005 has been lodged with the Privacy Commissioner. The online digest may be viewed at the commissioner's website, www.privacy.gov.au.

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Freedom of information

The GRDC is required to comply with the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act). No requests under the FOI Act were received during 2004-05.

See Appendix 4 and www.grdc.com.au for more about the GRDC's information product line.

Enquiries about access to documents and other matters relating to freedom of information should be directed during normal working hours to:

Freedom of Information Officer
Grains Research and Development Corporation
PO Box 5367
Kingston ACT 2604
Telephone: 02 6272 5525
Facsimile: 02 6271 6430

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Service Charter

The GRDC provides a wide range of publications for government and grower stakeholders as well as the wider community. The GRDC's Service Charter, available through www.grdc.com.au, outlines the corporation's commitment to delivering these important resources.

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Page last updated: February 28, 2007
© Grains Research and Development Corporation 2005