Two UNSW academics have been recognised among Australia's star researchers, with the award of Laureate Fellowships to Professors Mike Keane and Ian Petersen.

The valuable fellowships, the most prestigious for the nation's research community, are awarded by the Australian Research Council to internationally recognised researchers who play a leading role in building Australia's research capacity.

Announcing Professor Keane and Professor Petersen among 17 new Laureate Fellows, Federal Innovation Minister Senator Kim Carr said the government was investing in research that would benefit the nation.

Professor Keane, of the Australian School of Business and ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing Research, is an internationally recognised leader in econometrics and applied microeconomics, including the economics of insurance and health.

"Professor Michael Keane will use his fellowship to develop new models and design new policies in areas such as health insurance, aged care and superannuation to help people make better retirement decisions and improve their wellbeing in retirement," Senator Carr said.

Professor Petersen, currently an ARC Federation Fellow in the School of Engineering and Information Technology at UNSW@ADFA, is a leading authority in the field of Systems and Control Theory. Feedback control systems are vital in manufacturing, mining, automotive and military applications and are becoming increasingly important in the growing field of quantum technology.

Professor Petersen's fellowship will allow him to investigate new theories for control of complex quantum systems, enhancing Australia's prominent position in quantum technology.

Since the inception of the Laureate program in 2009, UNSW has secured seven of 47 fellowships awarded nationally.

Media contacts:Peter Trute, UNSW Media Office | 02 9385 1933 | Kelly, Australian School of Business | 02 9385 5895 |