About

Fiona Armstrong’s skills and experience are in research, policy, advocacy and communications. She has a qualifications in health and climate policy and is an active campaigner for health reform and climate action. A longstanding environmentalist, her current focus is on the health implications of climate and energy policy. She works with a range of organisations in the areas of strategy, advocacy, research, policy, governance and communications.

Her commentary appears in The Canberra Times, the Weekend Australian, the National Times, the Sydney Morning Herald, Crikey and CPD’s Thinking Points.

She is the founder and convenor of the Climate and Health Alliance, a coalition of health care stakeholders advocating for action on climate change to protect and promote public health.

Fiona is a co-founder and director of CLIMARTE: Arts for a Safe Climate, together with Guy Abrahams from Art + Environment and Deborah Hart from LIVE.

Fiona is a Fellow at the Centre for Policy Development, and her thinking on climate represented in the paper, Shifting from Fear to Hope, published in the 2010 Centre for Policy Development book, More than Luck: Ideas Australia Needs Now. She is a co-author of the 2009 CPD paper, Putting Health in Local Hands, with Tim Woodruff, David Legge, and Rod Wilson, which outlines a new model for Australia’s health system.

Interests

Fiona’s interest in climate policy stems from a lifelong awareness of the impact of the human population on the environment and her desire to contribute to ensuring a sustainable future. Her chief interests are in the development and implementation of comprehensive and integrated climate policy in Australia that is consistent with the latest climate science and ensures Australia assumes its fair share of the global obligation to reduce emissions.

Fiona’s health policy interests are in achieving greater equity and fairness in health, improving the quality and safety of health care, addressing inequities in rural and remote health, closing the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous health outcomes and life expectancy, improving access to primary health care, and making greater use of the multidisciplinary health care team.

Background

Fiona grew up in south west Queensland on a sheep and cattle property. Her desire to see better health, social, and environmental policy for people living in rural and remote parts of Australia stems from her understanding of the challenges facing people in isolated areas, and the importance of these communities to Australia’s economic security and its future. Her experience as a health professional and involvement in national health policy led to her advocacy for a fairer, more equitable and more effective health system.

Fiona was educated at  Macquarie University (Master in Politics and Public Policy), University of Queensland (Post-graduate Diploma in Journalism), University of Southern Queensland (Bachelor of Nursing).

Skills

Fiona has strong skills and experience in research and analysis of public policy issues, particularly in the areas of health and climate policy.

She has a record of conceiving and supporting the development of strategic policy directions underpinned by sound governance practices.

Fiona’s skills in communications and stakeholder engagement means she can build effective alliances and positive stakeholder relationships.

Her understanding of health and climate science provides for the development of evidence-based policy recommendations and strategic advice.