One of Australia's peak science bodies has advocated for a multi-billion dollar fund to help researchers with major challenges following the COVID-19 outbreak.
In a pre-budget submission to the federal government, Science and Technology Australia called for a $2.4 billion research translation and commercialisation fund.
The fund would allow for more research carried out by universities to be turned into products or jobs.
The peak body estimated the cost of the fund to be $600 million per year over the next forward estimates.
The group's chief executive Misha Schubert said the fund would be a seismic investment for Australia's scientific community.
"Science has been our salvation through the last 12 months of the pandemic and a challenging bushfire season last summer," she said.
"This is a strategic opportunity to invest in science for the next set of capabilities that Australian scientists will have to prepare for, for crises beyond COVID-19."
Ms Schubert said the fund would allow for more economic investment in critical research areas and allow for greater collaboration between Australian universities and industry.
"There is a vast array of fields where there are innovations that can be powerful economic stimulus, like agriculture or medical technology," she said. "As we come out of the pandemic, we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to enable science and technology to boost our economy. A research translation fund would do all of this and more."
The budget will be handed down in May.