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Table of Contents

History of Research in the Bureau of Meteorology




Chapter 1: Germination and Growth

Chapter 2: Struggle, Competition and Emergence
The Struggle for Recognition
International Involvement
Local Cooperation
The Bureau Goes Solo

Appendix 1: Meteorology Act 1906

Appendix 2: Meteorology Act 1955

Appendix 3: Simpson Report

Appendix 4: Survey Questionnaire

Appendix 5: Bibliography



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International Involvement

The following discussion of the Bureau's involvement in international meteorology has been included because I believe that it was the example of similar organisations overseas and the meetings with internationally recognised figures that helped to inspire the Bureau's executives to push strongly for their own research group in order that they might also play a part in the world scene.

Executive Involvement

Australia has been involved with international meteorology since 1890 at least, with three and possibly more of the state Government Astronomers being members of the International Meteorological Organization (IMO) for various periods until 1908. One of the three, Clement Wragge, actually attended two IMO conferences, in Munich in 1891 and Paris in 1896 (BOM [16]).

As Commonwealth Meteorologist, Hunt attended the 4th International Conference of Directors held in Paris in 1919 and his successor, Watt, visited a similar meeting in Warsaw in 1935 and the Conference for the South West Pacific in Wellington in 1937 (BOM [16]).

Warren was elected President of the Conference of Empire Meteorologists, held in March 1946 at Seaford House in London (MO [60]). In the same year he was also elected President of the IMO's South-West Pacific Regional Commission, a position he retained until his death in 1950 (BOM [8]). In this capacity he attended, together with the young Mr Bill Gibbs, the 1947 IMO Conference of Directors meeting in Washington, where he chaired the committee which drafted the Convention for the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), soon to replace the IMO (Gibbs [31]). At this and subsequent meetings, Gibbs met some of the most influential meteorologists of the time, such as Petterssen, Bergeron, Van Mieghem and others (WMO [92]). Perhaps these meetings prompted Gibbs to believe that one day the Bureau might be able to have such acclaimed people on its staff and set him on the course which eventually led to the formation of the BMRC.

Warren's final attendance at an IMO Executive Committee meeting came in May 1950, when he went to Lausanne to assist in winding up the IMO and planning for the inauguration of the WMO (BOM [8]). Unfortunately he died during the voyage home.

Organisations in Australian Science at Work - Bureau of Meteorology Research Centre

People in Bright Sparcs - Hunt, Henry Ambrose ; Watt, William Shand; Wragge, Clement Lindley; Zillman, John William

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Gardner, J. 1997 'Stormy Weather: A History of Research in the Bureau of Meteorology', Metarch Papers, No. 11 December 1997, Bureau of Meteorology

© Online Edition Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre and Bureau of Meteorology 2001
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