Robert van Barneveld

Photograph of Robert van Barneveld, showing head and shoulders, wearing professional atire.

Prof Robert van Barneveld


BAgrSc (Hon), PhD, RAnNutr, FAICD

Robert became Chair of Autism CRC in November 2017. He is an experienced Director of small and large businesses, not-for-profits, peak bodies and ASX Top 300. He has extensive experience in corporate governance, research commercialisation and management, and government liaison at state and federal levels.

As a past President of Autism Queensland he is familiar with the needs of families and carers of autistics. His daughter was initially diagnosed on the spectrum but later re-diagnosed with Rett Syndrome.

Robert was a Director of the Pork CRC Ltd (prior to its wind-up in 2019 and remains a Director of the legacy entity, Australasian Pork Research Institute Ltd) and has led three successful CRC bids, including the Autism CRC bid. He has also been involved in the establishment and transition of CRCs and has worked as a researcher within the Pork, Aquaculture and Aquafin CRCs.

Robert is an Adjunct Professor within the School of Environmental and Rural Science at the University of New England and the School of Agriculture and Food Sciences at the University of Queensland.

Robert is also Group CEO and Managing Director of the SunPork Group of Companies, which initiated the Autism and Agriculture Program and now employs autistic adults in specialist animal care roles.

“The Autism CRC is particularly important to me because I have watched it grow from inception, having seen the benefits a CRC can bring to a sector and having identified how valuable a research program of this nature would be to the autistic community.”