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The Cotton Research and Development Corporation (CRDC) delivers outcomes in cotton research, development and extension (RD&E) for the Australian cotton industry.

A partnership between the Commonwealth Government and cotton growers, CRDC invests in world-leading RD&E to benefit Australia’s dynamic cotton industry, and the wider community. We invest in innovation and transformative technologies to deliver impact, and as an organisation we are ambitious, agile, and adaptive.

Cotton is a major contributor to the economic, environmental and social fabric of rural Australia. The industry’s national exports generate an average of $1.9 billion in annual revenue, and the industry is a major employer in rural and regional communities.

The industry continues to go through a period of growth: in recent years, cotton has expanded from its predominate growing base in NSW and QLD to VIC, and commercial trials are also underway in the NT and WA.

RD&E and its resulting innovations are a key driving force behind our industry’s continued success - and CRDC’s purpose is to power the success of Australian cotton through this world-leading RD&E.

Our aim is to create $2 billion in additional gross value of cotton production by 2023. To help achieve this, Australian cotton growers and the Commonwealth Government will co-invest $24.3 million through CRDC into cotton RD&E during 2018-19, across approximately 300 projects and in collaboration with around 100 research partners. Read more about our investments here

We are based in Narrabri NSW (one of the major centres of cotton growing in Australia), and have satellite offices in Emerald, Toowoomba and Brisbane.

Our Purpose

Investing in world-leading RD&E to benefit Australia’s dynamic cotton industry.

Our Vision

CRDC: Powering the success of Australian cotton through world leading RD&E.

Our Goals

  • Increase productivity and profitability on cotton farms

  • Improve cotton farming sustainability and value chain competitiveness

  • Build adaptive capacity of the cotton industry

  • Strengthening partnerships and adoption

  • Driving RD&E impact.

Through successfully implementing our vision, purpose and goals, CRDC will achieve the following outcome:

Increased economic, social and environmental benefits for the Australian cotton industry, and the wider community, by investing in knowledge, innovation and its adoption.

Our Board

CRDC has an eight-member Board, consisting of a Chair (appointed by the Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources), the Executive Director (selected by the Board) and six non-executive Directors nominated by an independent Selection Committee.

Appointment of non-executive Directors is subject to Ministerial approval and directors (other than the Executive Director) are appointed for three-year terms.

Mr Richard Haire - Chair (FAICD, FAIM)

Mr Haire has held many leadership positions within the cotton industry, most recently as Managing Director and regional head of Olam International, a global leader in the supply chain management of agricultural products and food ingredients. He was formerly the Chief Executive of Queensland Cotton Corporation Pty Ltd and a member of the Rabo Australia Food and Agribusiness Advisory Board. Mr Haire is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Australian Institute of Management. He formerly served as a Director on the CRDC board from 2011 to 2014. 

Appointed: 29/08/2016 until 29/08/2019

Mr Bruce Finney - Executive Director BSc Ag (MAICD)

Mr Finney has extensive experience in the agricultural sector. Prior to his appointment to CRDC he worked in corporate agriculture in various corporate, management and agronomy roles in Australia and in an advisory role in Argentina. 

Mr Finney is a member of the Cotton Innovation Network, the Agriculture Senior Officials Research and Innovation Committee, and the Council of Rural RDCs Executive Committee. He is a past member of the Advisory Board QLD DAF program on Agricultural Robotics at QUT, chair of the Australian Cotton Growers Research Association, and director of the Cotton Catchment Communities CRC and the Irrigation Association of Australia. Mr Finney is a graduate of the Australian Rural Leadership Program and of the Company Directors Course of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Appointed: 01/08/2004 by virtue of his appointment as Executive Director of CRDC. He attends the Audit, Intellectual Property and Remuneration Committees as an observer.

Ms Kathryn Adams - Deputy Chair B.Sc.Agr (Hons), LLM, M.Bus, M.Env.Stud, Grad Dip Leg Pract, Prof Cert Arbitration, Practitioners Cert Mediation & Conciliation, FAICD 

Ms Adams is a microbiologist and lawyer and specialises in intellectual property management, commercial/industry application of R&D and corporate governance. She has had extensive experience in R&D investment from the perspective of a researcher, Director of a research institute and an investor.  She has been a practicing lawyer and was also the first Registrar of Plant Breeder's Rights in Australia.  

Ms Adams was on the Board of the Cotton CRC and is currently on the Boards of a number of CRCs as well as Agriculture Victoria Services Pty Ltd, and PBIP Ltd. She is a member of the R&D Tax Incentives Committee of AusIndustry, an adjunct Senior Research Fellow with the Australian Centre for Intellectual Property in Agriculture (ACIPA, Griffith Law School) and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Appointed: 20/10/2014 until 30/09/2017.
Reappointed: 01/10/2017 until 30/09/2020.
Appointed Chair of the Intellectual Property Committee. 

Mrs Elizabeth (Liz) Alexander BA, M Rur.Sys.Mgt, GAICD

Mrs Alexander specialises in finding collaborative and innovative solutions for regional challenges. She is the Agribusiness Development Coordinator for the Central Highlands Development Corporation (CHDC) and leads CHDC’s Central Highlands Accelerate Agribusiness (CHAA) initiative, working with stakeholders to grow productivity and profitability for all agribusiness within the region. In her role, Liz developed and facilitates the AgTeCH events held annually in Emerald and Mungindi. She has extensive knowledge of dryland and irrigated cropping industries, and experience across natural resource management, agricultural extension and water policy.

Mrs Alexander is currently a director of Plant Health Australia. Previously, Liz was a Director of Cotton Australia and the Chair of Theodore Water, the Theodore Irrigation LMA Interim Board and Glencore’s Clermont Open Cut Mine Groundwater and Environmental Reference Group. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters of Rural Systems Management from the University of Queensland, is a member of the Australasia-Pacific Extension Network and a graduate member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors

Appointed: 20/10/2014 until 30/09/2017.
Reappointed: 01/10/2017 until 30/09/2020.

Mr Greg Kauter B.Ag.Ec. Grad.Cert Ru.Sc. GAICD

Mr Kauter is an agricultural consultant with more than 30 years of cotton industry experience. He has had extensive experience in cotton research administration and industry stewardship through roles in  crop protection, farming systems, plant variety and biotechnology research programs. He has also planned and developed extension strategies to facilitate the adoption of new technology and knowledge. He has experience with industry representative bodies in developing strategic priorities with cotton growers and industry stakeholders, identify emerging issues and developing evidence based policy responses based on sound research and information.  

Mr Kauter currently consults on cotton farm management and Best Management Practice implementation. He has been the industry representative for biosecurity through Plant Health Australia Ltd and Chair of the cotton Industry Biosecurity Group. He is a former President of the Cotton Consultants Association Inc.  

Appointed: 20/10/2014 until 30/09/2017.
Reappointed: 01/10/2017 until 30/09/2020.

Dr Jeremy Burdon BSc (Hons.), PhD, Hon DSc (Umeå), FAA, FTSE, MAICD

Dr Burdon has an international reputation in evolutionary biology combining interests and expertise in ecology, epidemiology and genetics to contribute solutions to problems in a wide range of areas or agriculture, including disease control, pre-breeding, weed biology, and ecological sustainability. His research has been recognised through the award of a number of national and international awards and honours.

He has had extensive experience in research management and commercialisation leading CSIRO-Plant Industry for many years. This gave him exposure to a broad swathe of important Australian agricultural industries including cotton, grains, sugar, and various horticultural crops. Subsequently, he has served on the Board of Trustees of Bioversity International, as a director of the Grains Research & Development Corporation, a member of Sugar Research Australia’s independent Research Funding Panel, and as Chair of the Australian Academy of Science’s National Committee for Agriculture, Fisheries & Food. In that role he led the production of a Decadal Plan for Agricultural Science that was released in 2017.

Appointed: 01/10/2017 until 30/09/2020.

Professor Les Copeland

Professor Copeland has been conducting research and teaching in agricultural and food science in the University of Sydney for over forty years. His research on plant, grain and food chemistry, and the origins of the human diet, has resulted in over 150 publications and 34 PhD completions. He is a member of the Research Advisory Committee of the Australian Farm Institute, and Editor-in-Chief of the scientific journals Cereal Chemistry and Agriculture. Professor Copeland was Chair of the Cotton Catchment Communities Participants’ Forum and a Director of the Australian Cotton and Value Added Wheat CRCs. He is a former Dean of Agriculture, and he was the Foundation President of the Australian Council of Deans of Agriculture. He is the immediate past President of the University of Sydney Association of Professors.

Professor Copeland holds BSc and PhD degrees from the University of Sydney and a Graduate Diploma from the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He has held research positions at Yale University, the University of Buffalo, the University of California in Davis, and the Australian National University. He is a Fulbright Alumnus, the recipient of an Excellence in Teaching Award from the American Association of Cereal Chemists-International, and has had international experience in capacity building.

Appointed: 01/10/2017 until 30/09/2020.

Ms Rosemary Richards B.Ag.Ec, MBA

Ms Richards is an agribusiness consultant with extensive experience in broadacre cropping, in particular oilseeds and downstream processing sectors. Ms Richards is principal of Bowman Richards & Associates which undertakes strategic planning, supply chain management and trade and market access services for private companies and industry and Government organisations to support market and business growth.  

She also has extensive experience in the biotechnology sector and was actively involved in the introduction of GM canola to Australia as CEO of the Australian Oilseeds Federation. Ms Richards continues to be involved in biotechnology policy and advocacy through work with Australian and international representative organisations.

Ms Richards currently consults on trade and market access, commercialisation of biotech crops and business strategy. She is a passionate advocate for the agricultural sector and maintains close linkages with a range of agribusiness industry organisations.

Appointed: 01/10/2017 until 30/09/2020.

Our Team

CRDC’s small but dedicated team of skilled and experienced staff actively manage R&D investment portfolios to achieve the cotton industry’s strategic goals. Our internal capacity is an important element of the overall effectiveness of R&D investment for the cotton industry.


 Bruce Finney 
 Executive Director



 Ian Taylor
 General Manager R&D Investment & Impact


 Warwick Waters
 CottonInfo Program Manager


 Ruth Redfern
 Communications Manager 


 Allan Williams
 R&D Investment & Impact Manager



 Jane Trindall

 R&D Investment & Impact Manager


 Susan Maas 
R&D Investment & Impact Manager



 Graeme Tolson 
 General Manager Business and Finance

 Dianne Purcell
 Executive Assistant

 Emily Luff 


 Megan Baker
Project Administration Assistant




 Peter Harvey

 IT Manager 



Lynda George
Project Administration Assistant 


Our Partners

Collaboration is king in the Australian cotton industry, with many industry bodies, research organisations and individual researchers, consultants, agronomists and growers working together on joint programs and initiatives.


It’s a unique feature, and strength, of the cotton industry. Key partners with CRDC in its research, development and extension projects are: 




Working together to deliver RD&E benefits

Did you know? CRDC is one of 15 rural research and development corporations (RDCs) in Australia.

The RDCs deliver research, development and extension for their specific agricultural industries: cotton, grains, meat, wool, fish, wine, eggs, sugar, pork, horticulture and even crocodiles, to name but a few. You may be familiar with GRDC, MLA and AWI, and less familiar with AgriFutures Australia, Fisheries RDC and Wine Australia.

Each RDC invests in diverse projects, but together we form a network that enables primary production through effective RD&E, and delivers substantial benefits at the farm gate and across the economy and society. 

We collectively invest around $580 million in RD&E on behalf of our growers and the Government to improve the profitability and sustainability of our rural industries and communities. We’re the largest productivity-driven industry program in Australia. 


Together, we deliver six key things to our individual industries, and to agriculture as a whole:

  • Innovation and practice improvement;
  • Market access and international competitiveness;
  • Farm gate returns through smarter farming;
  • Employment through new skills and changed practices;
  • Value for money and efficiency, ensuring a return on your investment; and a
  • Leveraged investment through collaboration and co-investment.

For more on the RDCs and how we’re working together to deliver benefits for you, visit the Council of RDCs website: 



Corporate Publications

CRDC's corporate publications including our Strategic Plan, Annual Operational Plan and Annual Report.

CRDC Funding Agreement 2015-19

The partnership between Australian cotton growers and the Australian Government to co-invest in R&D through CRDC is formalised in this Funding Agreement, which covers the 2015-19 period. This Agreement between the Government and CRDC sets out expectations about CRDC's performance, transparency and accountability to levy-payers, the Government and the public. 

Download the CRDC Funding Agreement 2015-19.

CRDC Strategic RD&E Plan 2018-23

CRDC’s five-year Strategic RD&E Plan is the organisation’s key planning document. It is the compass that sets the direction for the organisation’s operations and investment in cotton RD&E, enabling the industry to achieve its long term vision and the Government to achieve its strategic RD&E priorities. 

CRDC's new five year plan - the Strategic RD&E Plan 2018-23 - will come into effect on 1 July 2018. 

Download the CRDC Strategic RD&E Plan 2018-23
Previous CRDC Strategic RD&E Plans are available at Inside Cotton.

CRDC Annual Operational Plan 2018-19

Under the CRDC’s five year Strategic RD&E Plan, CRDC establishes five Annual Operational Plans – each of which become the primary planning and implementation tool for the strategy for that year. While the Strategic RD&E Plan sets the overall vision and direction for the organisation, the Annual Operational Plan outlines how the goals will be achieved. The CRDC Annual Operational Plan for 2018-19 sets out the first year of operation under CRDC’s Strategic RD&E Plan 2018-23. 

Download the CRDC Annual Operational Plan 2018-19.
Previous Annual Operational Plans are available at Inside Cotton.

CRDC Monitoring and Evaluation Framework

The Monitoring and Evaluation Framework provides a tool by which CRDC can evaluate progress towards, and acheivement of, the stated outcomes detailed in the CRDC Strategic RD&E Plan. The Monitoring and Evaluation Framework aligned with the CRDC Strategic RD&E Plan 2018-23 will come into effect on 1 July 2018, and will be made available from this page. 

Annual Report 2016-17

In accordance with the Primary Industries Research and Development Act 1989 (PIRD Act) CRDC must present an Annual Report. The Report provides an overview of the CRDC’s governance, operations, achievements and financial statements for the 2016-17 period. 

Download the CRDC Annual Report.
Previous Annual Reports are available at Inside Cotton.

Indexed lists of CRDC files

CRDC provides access to an indexed list of the titles of all relevant files, including new parts of existing files, as required under the Standing Orders of the Senate.

The most recent indexed files can be downloaded here:
Indexed list of files - January to June 2018 - NIL to report
Index list of files July - December 2017

Senate Order on Entity Contracts 

Pursuant to the amended Senate Order, the attached table sets out contracts for procurement of goods, services, research services and contracts for services to be provided by CRDC which provide for consideration of $100,000 or more (including GST) which: 

  • (A) Have not been fully performed as at 30 June 2018; and/or 
  • (B) Have been entered into during the 12 months prior to 30 June 2018

CRDC contracts research, development and extension services through the CRDC Research Deed, Multi‐party Deeds and Co‐operative agreements or consultancy agreements which contain general commercial confidentiality provisions and may also provide for outputs to be confidential such as intellectual property.

Download the Senate Order on Agency Procurement Contracts for 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018.

CRDC Research Deed

The CRDC Research Deed is the formal agreement entered into by each researcher/organisation when they form a partnership CRDC.

Download the CRDC Research Deed.


Executive Remuneration Reporting

The Board reviews and approves the remuneration of senior executives annually in accordance with the PIRD Act. The Privacy Act 1988 limits the right to publish an individual's personal information. The following tables provide the average remuneration.

Table A: Average annual reportable remuneration paid to substantive executives

NO. OF EMPLOYEES Average reportable salary*
3 $218,938

* Average reportable salary includes gross salary, employer superannuation, and reportable fringe benefits. There were no allowances or bonuses paid in the period.

Table B: Other highly paid staff

Workplace Values

CRDC values social and cultural diversity and is committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity and the provision of a safe and healthy work environment.

Current Positions

Positions available within CRDC are advertised here as they arise.

Commercialisation Manager

  • R&D Commercialisation and IP Management
  • Cotton industry
  • Location flexible

CRDC wishes to appoint a Commercialisation Manager, operating within a progressive, open innovation model, to lead the commercialisation of research outputs and manage intellectual property (IP) for the organisation.

As Commercialisation Manager you will:

  • Develop and assess opportunities for potential commercialisation across CRDC’s portfolio of research projects, innovation pipeline and IP assets
  • Establish an effective process and framework to manage commercialisation of research outputs to protect and manage IP generated from CRDC research projects
  • Collaborate with internal and external stakeholders to identify, evaluate and develop a pipeline, proactively managing projects through to completion
  • Lead detailed technology, commercial and IP due diligence of research outputs to determine alignment with market applications
  • Negotiate commercial terms for licensing, sale or co-development of IP projects, ensuring ongoing contractual adherence
  • Provide expert advice and guidance to the Board, IP Committee, Executive team and staff on all aspects of commercialisation
  • Foster a culture of commercialisation, building capabilities and knowledge across CRDC to strengthen awareness and ability to identify and capitalise on opportunities
  • Possess high level interpersonal skills in building and maintaining networks and relationships with diverse stakeholders relating to the commercialisation of IP

We are keen to hear from you if:

  • You have tertiary qualifications and proven experience (preferably 5-10 years) in commercialisation of research within innovation, research, commercial or investment environments, which may include alternative funding models, such as venture capital, philanthropy and crowd sourcing.
  • You possess outstanding leadership and organisational skills including the capacity to initiate, lead and negotiate in a dynamic environment.
  • You are an energetic self-starter with a strategic and commercial mindset who is passionate about delivering innovation to the Australian cotton industry from a strong R&D portfolio.
  • You understand best practice IP management, IP and company law.
  • You are willing to be an active participant in a small, dynamic team environment.
  • You are willing to travel as part of the role.

This role is an exciting opportunity with a progressive organisation committed to continuous improvement and adoption of world leading R&D for Australia’s cotton industry. CRDC’s head office is in Narrabri NSW, one of Australia’s largest cottongrowing areas and centres for research, however, the location of the position, within eastern Australia, will be flexible.

To enquire please phone Mick Hay or Sharon Moloney on 1300 380 701 or apply with your CV and application letter at