IP Australia paid $10,800 for ABC science commentator Dr Karl Kruszelnicki to give a talk in June.
ABC presenters are scooping up many of the tens of thousands of dollars in celebrity speaking contracts being dished out by the federal public service.
A small number of departments and agencies have divulged the names of high-profile speakers they have contracted.
Answers to questions on notice reveal IP Australia paid $10,800 to bring in ABC science commentator Dr Karl Kruszelnicki to give a talk in June.
IP Australia said his talk helped intellectual property staff keep up to date in science and engineering.
Dr Karl, as he is known, is on the books at Claxton Speakers International along with Lateline presenter Emma Alberici.
Austrade spent $14,300 to get Alberici to host its 51st Australian export awards a year ago.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics spent $18,132 to have Dan Gregory, a panelist on The Gruen Transfer, as the keynote and dinner speaker at the NatStats conference in early 2013.
An ABC spokesman said the public broadcaster had a comprehensive policy in place requiring all work outside the organisation to be referred "upwards for approval", regardless if it was paid or unpaid.
"This approval process takes into account real, perceived or potential conflict of interest issues with the staff member’s role," the spokesman said.
"In determining whether a conflict exists the ABC takes into account how it might be managed and considers both the nature of the external work and the work within the organisation.”
Not all speakers have had links to the ABC. And figures suggest fees for guest speakers paid for by the public service do not vary greatly.
Communications expert Jeffrey Cole was brought in as a keynote speaker for Australian Communications and Media Authority's RadComms 2013 conference at a cost of $12,803. The ACMA has confirmed this was only for travel costs and Mr Cole did not charge a fee.
In 2011 the National Archives of Australia paid $11,462 to have business advisor Bernard Salt record a video address to be used in the training of senior staff, which the archives saw as a valuable tool in its long-term corporate planning.
As of Monday afternoon the Defence Department was yet to provide details or a response about its latest celebrity speaker contract.
The Defence contract prompted outrage from a union representing workers as it was signed in the midst of tough bargaining negotiations with staff offered a less than 0.9 per cent a year pay rise while annual inflation runs at 3 per cent.