Dr Allison has studied ice and climate for 50 years and participated in or led 25 research expeditions to the Antarctic. He has contributed extensively to Antarctic research and been actively involved for many years in international collaboration in Antarctic science
He was co-chairman of the Joint Committee for the International Polar Year 2007–08, a two-year polar research program involving more than 130 internationally collaborative science projects, and 50,000 participants from 60 countries.
Ian is an Officer of the Order of Australia, a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and was the 2016 Tasmanian Senior Australian of the Year. In 1988 he was awarded the Australian Antarctic Medal.
Participation of an Australia Day Ambassador in community events is regularly cited as one of the highlights of community celebrations and there have been a number of inspirational speeches given by Ambassadors at Derwent Valley Australia Day celebrations in the past. Dr Allison will speak at the Derwent Esplanade, New Norfolk, on Australia Day this Friday, where events will be held from 10am until 2pm.
Last year's local ambassador, home-grown Olympian Dana Faletic, has been named the Australia Day Ambassador for the Kentish municipality.