Legal Counsel - IP, R&D, Technology Commercialisation

Date Posted: 6 Feb 2024

Location: Canberra, ACT, AU | Adelaide, SA, AU | Newcastle, NSW, AU | Sydney, NSW, AU | Brisbane, QLD, AU | Perth, WA, AU | Hobart, TAS, AU | Melbourne, VIC, AU

Company: CSIRO

Acknowledgement of Country

CSIRO acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land, sea and waters, of the area that we live and work on across Australia. We acknowledge their continuing connection to their culture and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. View our vision towards reconciliation

Child Safety

CSIRO is committed to the safety and wellbeing of all children and young people involved in our activities and programs. View our Child Safe Policy.

The Opportunity

  • An Ongoing role! Work at the cutting edge of tomorrow’s science and technology
  • Be part of a mission-driven organisation & work as a trusted advisor
  • Opportunities for flexible working arrangements and personal development



CSIRO is seeking a qualified and passionate Commercial Lawyer for an indefinite opportunity specialising in IP, R&D and technology commercialisation. The role is open to applicants who are looking to work in a full-time or part-time capacity, and the team is flexible regarding location and working arrangements for the successful candidate. 


The Commercial Lawyer role is situated within the Commercial Legal team and provides legal advice, negotiation and support to CSIRO decision-makers across a wide variety of commercial transactions. Commercial Legal is divided into three teams of roughly even size, each led by a Team Leader and each supporting several different CSIRO business units. The successful candidate will be appointed to one of these three teams, reporting to one of the three Team Leaders.


In addition to Commercial Legal, the broader Growth function contains other teams of professionals, including commercialisation, IP and contract management staff.  Together with Commercial Legal, these teams provide specialist advice and support to help CSIRO’s business units deliver scientific and technological solutions to customers through transactions.


Your duties will include:

  • Legal services: Providing legal, compliance and risk advice to delegates. Supporting transaction teams to structure, negotiate and settle commercial transactions. Common transaction types include intellectual property licensing, assignment, or other IP-related transactions; spin-out, start up and equity transactions; research collaborations and joint venture transactions; and commercial dispute resolution.
  • Resource allocation: Participating in the priority-setting of commercial transactions for the business unit(s) you support. Participating in the commercial strategy for those business units. Managing outsourcing of legal work to external law firms where required (noting that the great majority of legal work at CSIRO is performed in-house by CSIRO lawyers).
  • Relationship management: Acting as a key contact and trusted adviser for the business units you support.
  • Team support: Meeting regularly with your Team Leader and other Team members. Participating in business improvement and organisational change projects.
  • Corporate citizenship: Communicating openly, effectively and respectfully with all staff, clients and customers of CSIRO. Working collaboratively as part of a multi-disciplinary, often regionally dispersed, team, to support CSIRO’s scientific objectives. Adhering to the spirit and practice of CSIRO’s Code of Conduct, Health, Safety & Environment plans and policies, Diversity initiatives and Zero Harm goals.


Location: All AU CSIRO Sites will be considered. A hybrid working environment available. 

Salary: AU $121,455 to $142,321 pa (pro-rata for part-time) + up to 15.4% superannuation

Tenure: Indefinite, Full-time or Part-time will be considered

Reference: 95959


To be considered you will need:

  • Relevant tertiary qualifications in law; admission as a legal practitioner of the High Court or a Supreme Court of a State or Territory; and a current Australian jurisdiction practising certificate (or evidence of entitlement to hold one).

  • Demonstrated experience working with minimal supervision in a government or commercial legal practice or as part of an in-house legal team.

  • Demonstrated expertise in at least three of the following core areas of practice: technology & IP; contract & commercial law; corporate/M&A law; governance & risk.

  • Demonstrated commitment to ethical behaviour and integrity for self, colleagues, stakeholders and customers.

  • Demonstrated experience providing strategic advice and support to senior executives, distilling complex legal issues to provide practical options and resolve issues.

  • Demonstrated experience working autonomously and taking initiative to resolve complex problems in an ambiguous environment.

  • Demonstrated experience habitually building and maintaining strong, collaborative professional relationships, influencing multiple stakeholders and managing conflict to achieve successful outcomes.


For full details about this role please review the Position Description



Applications for this position are open to Australian/New Zealand Citizens and Australian Permanent Residents. Appointment to this role is subject to provision of a national police check and may be subject to other security/medical/character requirements.


Flexible Working Arrangements

We work flexibly at CSIRO, offering a range of options for how, when and where you work. 


Diversity and Inclusion

We are working hard to recruit people representing the diversity across our society, and ensure that all our people feel supported to do their best work and feel empowered to let their ideas flourish. 



At CSIRO Australia's national science agency, we solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology. We put the safety and wellbeing of our people above all else and earn trust everywhere because we only deal in facts. We collaborate widely and generously and deliver solutions with real impact. 

CSIRO is committed to values-based leadership to inspire performance and unlock the potential of our people.

Join us and start creating tomorrow today!


How to Apply

Please apply on-line and provide a cover letter and CV that best demonstrate your motivation and ability to meet the requirements of this role.


Applications Close

25 February 2024, 11:00pm AEDT.

11:00 PM

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