Speakers in Schools

Speakers in Schools

Speakers in Schools

The Speakers in Schools program places Macquarie University academics in schools to connect students and teachers with researchers who inspire, inform and challenge students to question their thinking. Presentations discuss hot topics, global issues affecting society, have inspirational and significant impact for students and in some cases can be linked to the school curriculum.

Audience: High school students in years 10, 11 or 12 
Length: Can be tailored to suit your needs – between 30 and 40 minutes, which includes question time, is recommended 
Bookings: Contact Tristan Tulloch (02) 9850 1890 with your choice of presentation(s), desired length of presentation(s) and three date options 
Note: Video conference presentations are available for schools outside the Sydney metropolitan area 
Cost: Free

Presentations are grouped under Macquarie’s areas of study:

Business

Who has power and influence in your Facebook Network?

Presenter Dr Hume Winzar accesses and downloads information about his Facebook friends and their friends. He then presents this data as a graph of the network and uses different mathematical criteria to identify the people who are the most connected and the most influential within the network. This opens discussion about the ethics of metadata gathering, the limitations of such analysis and further applications such as simulation and forecasting. Hume uses relevant open source free software that students can download and experiment with themselves.

Presenter

Dr Hume Winzar is an Associate Professor in Business and Program Director of the Bachelor of Business Analytics program at Macquarie University. In 1993, Dr Winzar designed Australia's first university course on doing business on the internet. He is a co-author of three bestselling textbooks on statistics, consumer psychology, and marketing research. Dr Winzar is currently interested in business applications of complexity theory and network analysis.

Economics is everywhere!

This presentation engages students about the relevance of economics in their day-to-day lives. You may not realise it, but economics is everywhere and underpins much of the way that people, businesses and society operates. The presentation engages students to realise that microeconomic principles and macroeconomic principles are abundantly being engaged in their world. Furthermore, the presentation makes students realise that understanding economics can make them better decision-makers for their personal benefit, the businesses they work in and society as a whole.

Presenter

Prashan Karunaratne is a lecturer in the Department of Economics at Macquarie University, where he has been lecturing for 14 years. He is mostly involved in the teaching of first-year microeconomics and first-year macroeconomics. He is undertaking a PhD in the learning and teaching of economics.

Are multinational companies paying their fair share of tax in Australia?

This presentation looks at the requirement that a company pay Australian income tax on profits derived in Australia. It also explores the extent to which accountants facilitate arrangements to shift profits outside Australia and, as a result, outside the Australian income tax net.

Presenter

Dr Catriona Lavermicocca has worked as a senior manager in taxation at Ernst and Young and obtained her qualifications as a chartered accountant before completing a Master of Laws specialising in taxation and commercial law at UNSW. Catriona lectures in taxation law at Macquarie University. Her research is in the area of tax risk management practices, tax transparency, reputational risk and the income tax compliance behaviour of large corporations.

How perceptions influence consumer decision making about environmentally friendly products

This presentation explains how perceptions influence consumers’ attitudes and thus their decisions, especially in relation to environmentally friendly household products. It draws upon consumer behaviour theories and key findings from presenter Dr LayPeng Tan’s research.

Presenter

Dr LayPeng Tan is from Malaysia and is a lecturer in Marketing at Macquarie University.

Aspire to lead and serve to achieve

This presentation delves into the paradigms of leadership and followership. It discusses how people must learn to follow first and view life from the trenches before taking the helm. This presentation leads students to consider if the door to leadership is open and shows students how to prepare themselves for the journey beyond.

Presenter

Deborah Howlett has extensive experience in tertiary education and the corporate world. Her areas of interest lie in leadership, business strategy and workplace learning.

Education

New technologies, children and socioemotional development: Are they compatible?

This presentation begins by asking students: ‘What is the one object that helps you think and you cannot live without?’

Following this, the presenter discusses the role of new technologies in our lives and the use of technologies with children. This presentation underlines the importance of adopting a holistic and creative perspective when engaging with technology and focuses on its influences on social and emotional development; for example, teamwork and self-esteem.

Presenter

Dr Maria Hatzigianni is a lecturer in Early Childhood, Primary Education and Educational Technology at Macquarie University. Maria’s teaching units include: Maths, Science and Technology for young children, and Philosophy and History of Education. Maria previously worked as a kindergarten teacher and director for more than 15 years.

Engineering and IT

Mechanical engineering: From high-speed vehicles to asthma inhalers

Engineers are arguably some of the most adaptable and skilled individuals in the workforce. You will find them designing cars and aircraft, working in pharmaceutical companies to improve a process, helping to improve our understanding of brain tumours and working in banks. To become an engineer is first and foremost about learning how to think critically and solve problems systematically, using a scientific method and a design process. Everything we do as engineers is ultimately to make our lives and the lives of those around us more comfortable while pushing humanity into the future. And we do this always by considering the impact on our environment.

Drawing on the presenter’s experiences and those of his peers, this presentation outlines the possible career paths that a degree in engineering can take you.

Presenter

Dr Agisilaos Kourmatzis (Agi) is a lecturer in Mechanical Engineering at Macquarie University and a professional chartered engineer with the Engineering Council in the United Kingdom. Before joining Macquarie, he worked as a Research Engineer/Associate in the Clean Combustion Research Group at the University of Sydney. He has worked on a range of projects from designing cleaner fuel injection systems, miniature gas turbines and biofuel systems to designing rail equipment and biomedical devices.

Mathematics and computers in everyday life

Not many people understand how much creativity goes into designing algorithms that we take for granted in the technology we use. This presentation covers algorithms for security, search and rescue, and online communications.

Presenter

Dr Annabelle McIver is a mathematician and computer scientist. She studied mathematics at Cambridge and Oxford universities in the United Kingdom, planning to have a career in pure mathematics before deciding to get some experience in industry applying her mathematics skills. Annabelle transitioned back into academia at Oxford University's Computer Laboratory and later at Macquarie University. Her current research looks to solve challenging problems motivated by modern computing applications and the mathematics of computer security.

History of the World Wide Web

This talk presents a history of the technologies that became the World Wide Web to help understand what the web is now with reference to where it came from and why it was developed.

Presenter

Associate Professor Steve Cassidy is a computer scientist working on ways to help researchers make their research work reproducible and shareable on the web. He teaches programming and web design and development at Macquarie University.

From radioactivity to image guided radiotherapy: A century of technological innovation

About 40 per cent of the cancer patients in Australia are treated with radiotherapy. In radiotherapy, ionising radiation is delivered to the tumour in order to destroy the cancer cells. The rationale behind modern radiotherapy is to deliver as much radiation as possible to the tumour volume while sparing the healthy tissue from radiation exposure. Engineers, physicists and clinicians have been working closely together to meet this goal, which has led to different technological innovations that took place over a century. The treatment of cancer patients requires a multidisciplinary approach, which involves biology, medicine, psychology and nursing. Behind the scenes, there is also an important role for biomedical engineers and physicists to develop techniques for improving and safeguarding the treatment.

This presentation takes you through a brief history of radiotherapy from the discovery of radioactivity to the most modern treatment modalities. It also briefly discusses the current technological challenges.

Presenter

Professor Yves De Deene is a professor of Biomedical Engineering at Macquarie University. He started his academic career at the Ghent University in Belgium where he worked at the Ghent University Hospital as a medical physics researcher in the field of radiotherapy and medical imaging. His primary research interest is in safeguarding modern radiotherapy and applying quantitative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to the guidance of radiation treatment. He collaborates with several medical centres in Sydney.

Game design: The art and science of fun

What is fun? In this talk we look at the different kinds of experience we call ‘fun’ and consider how they can be created. We delve into some of the psychology of what makes play fun and think about how we can use this insight to design better games and other playful activities.

Presenter

Dr Malcolm Ryan has been teaching game design and development for the past 10 years. He published his first commercial board game, The Road, in 2015 and is busy at work on his first video game, Möbius, to be published later this year. He also conducts research into the design of ‘serious’ games for education and health. He thinks Portal 1 is the best video game of all time and defies anyone to disagree.

Alan Turing: Machines, Minds and Morphogenesis

Alan Turing is one of the greatest scientific minds of the twentieth century. A recent Oscar winning film The Imitation Gameconcentrates on his vital contributions to WWII codebreaking. Alan Turing is also known as the founding father of modern computer science for his groundbreaking work on machine intelligence, for his remarkable work building mathematical models of embryo development and for being an early pioneer of the theory of chaos and self-organisation. Each one of these contributions has served to shape our world today.

This talk digs deeper into Alan Turing's scientific legacy to illustrate how truly remarkable his work is and to explain how it has influenced our lives.

Presenter

Professor Dominic Verity is a mathematician and computer scientist lecturer at Macquarie University. He started his information technology career in the early 1980s, working for the personal computing pioneer Acorn Computers, the British company that invented the ubiquitous ARM microprocessor that drives mobile phones. He completed a PhD in mathematics from the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, and went on to work in the investment banking industry as a mathematical consultant and as the head of an equity derivatives trading team.

Dominic grew up in the town of Bletchley in Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom, which is the home of the WWII codebreakers, and is proud to have Alan Turing as his mathematical grandfather (his PhD supervisor's supervisor's supervisor).

Environment

Climate justice: impacts, responsibility and action

Since climate change became a social and political issue, questions of justice have been at the forefront of debates. This talk will explore the justice and equity issues associated with climate change in terms of why climate change is an issue for justice, who is responsible for addressing climate change and action that we can take. 

Presenter

Dr Sara Fuller is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Geography and Planning at Macquarie University. She previously worked in the UK and Hong Kong before arriving in Australia. Her research explores the ethical and justice dimensions of climate change, particularly focusing on grassroots, community and NGO responses to the climate challenge.

Plastics, litter and you: how to be a better global citizen

Plastics are everywhere in modern society and unfortunately have ended up littering the world’s oceans and waterways. This presentation explains the impacts that litter, particularly plastics, have on our environment. It covers where plastic comes from, how long it lasts, its effects to biota and ways in which we can help reduce this problem.

Presenter

Dr Scott Wilson is a senior lecturer in the Department of Environmental Sciences at Macquarie University. He has more than 20 years’ experience in researching the impacts of contaminants to both marine and freshwater systems. His current focus is on understanding the extent of effects that litter, particularly plastics, have on our environment and examining ways in which this can be reduced.

Can coastal wetlands combat climate change?

Coastal wetlands (saltmarsh, mangrove, seagrass) captures and stores atmospheric carbon dioxide in the sediment through a process known as carbon sequestration. It does this more effectively and more permanently than terrestrial forests. One of the most promising new ideas to mitigate global climate change is to include coastal vegetation in carbon management schemes. Presenter Jeff Kelleway shares his research to determine just how much carbon is stored in these ecosystems and how they might be better managed to avoid the loss of this carbon back into the atmosphere.

Presenter

Jeff Kelleway is a wetland scientist with more than ten years’ experience of mosquito bites, wet feet and muddy gumboots. Jeff has worked as a research scientist for the NSW Government, mapping and monitoring coastal wetlands and iconic wetlands of the Murray-Darling Basin. He is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Macquarie University where he is investigating the carbon sequestration potential, or ‘blue carbon’, of coastal wetlands.

Ticking Bombs: The triggering of explosive volcanic eruptions

Understanding what triggers explosive volcanic eruptions is critical for understanding volcanic risk and hazards. Australia has only two active volcanoes, but as a country bound to the north and east by highly active volcanic regions (Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu and New Zealand), we are vulnerable to the effects of major, ash-producing volcanic eruptions. This presentation covers why we get volcanoes and what causes them to erupt, and details some of the research on volcanoes being carried out at Macquarie University.

Presenter

Dr Heather Handley completed a PhD on the geochemistry of Indonesian volcanoes at Durham University in the United Kingdom. Heather is a researcher at Macquarie University and is investigating the timescales of volcanic processes in Vanuatu and the Galápagos Islands. In 2012, Heather received an Australian Research Council Future Fellowship to develop our understanding of the timescales of a range of Earth-system processes. The outcomes of this research will benefit volcanic hazard mitigation and provide crucial knowledge on the rates of the effects of climate change in the landscape.

Environmental impacts of land use change

The arrival of Europeans to Australia in the eighteenth century was accompanied by domesticated animals and agricultural practices unsuited to environments previously inhabited by Indigenous hunter-gatherers. Land degradation is consequently a widespread problem. This presentation focuses on the impacts of land use change on vegetation, soils and waterways, and how modern land management approaches are attempting to mitigate some of the damage.

Presenter

Associate Professor Patricia Fanning is a geomorphologist, specialising in erosion and sedimentation processes and landscape evolution in semi-arid environments and, in particular, the impacts of human activities on these processes and landscapes. In recent years, she has applied this knowledge to understanding the archaeological record of Indigenous hunter-gatherers and what it can tell us about how Aboriginal people lived in the landscape in the past.

Health and medical sciences

Using experimental animals to study neurodegenerative diseases

Students will gain an understanding of why medical researchers use experimental animals in their studies. The presentation will also include discussion of the different types of experimental animal studies that can be conducted and how a researcher chooses which experimental animal model to use in their study. Examples that will be discussed will include the most commonly used mouse models of motor neuron disease, Dr. Laird's zebrafish models of neurodegenerative disease, as well as rat, fly and worm models of neurological disease. 

Presenter

Dr Angela Laird leads a team investigating the neurodegenerative disease spinocerebellar ataxia within the Department of Biomedical Sciences at Macquarie University. Dr. Laird completed her PhD at UNSW in 2008 and then worked for three years within a leading international Motor Neuron Disease laboratory at the University of Leuven, Belgium. On return to Sydney in 2011 Dr. Laird formed a team to study a similar neurodegenerative disease, spinocerebellar ataxia-3 (also known as Machado Joseph disease), which is particularly prevalent in indigenous communities of the Northern Territory. Her team has established the first transgenic zebrafish model of this disease and are currently using these zebrafish to test possible treatments for the disease.

What mice can tell us about the brain and disease

This presentation covers what we know about how problems in the brain cause neurological diseases, how genetically modified mice are created and used for neuroscience research, and touches on ethical issues surrounding the use of animals in these studies.

Presenter

Dr Adam Walker is an NHMRC Research Fellow in our Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. He completed his PhD in neuroscience at the University of Melbourne in 2011, and then spent 4 years as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pennsylvania, USA before returning to Australia. His research focuses on the molecular causes of motor neuron disease and dementia, with studies in genetically modified mice.

A cure for Motor Neurone Disease (MND) rides shotgun in the #ALSIceBucketChallenge

This presentation explains how high-throughput shotgun proteomics is used to identify and characterise protein changes in models of MND. Proteomics tools are powerful in that they can examine minute changes in protein networks providing a big picture of what's happening within a cellular system. From this, researchers can identify defective proteins and networks that gives us leads for further investigation into the biological processes that are altered at the onset of this disease. 

Presenter Albert Lee is a strong advocate for the next generation of students to take up science as a career as it provides opportunities for lateral-thinkers and opens up avenues to other industries - his presentation encourages this.

Presenter

Albert Lee completed his Bachelors of Science degree at University of Sydney in 2004, and his Ph.D in hepatic cancer glycoproteomics at Macquarie University in 2011. He undertook postdoctoral research at The Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA , and in 2014 he joined the Macquarie University MND research centre. Albert has a passion for research and teaching. His research focuses on teasing out the mechanisms and processes that are defective in MND and essentially what are the causes of this devastating disease.

Zebra fish models of motor neuron disease

This presentation explains how and why we use zebra fish to model motor neuron disease. Presenter Emily Don describes motor neuron disease and discusses why we need animal models in order to find a cure for this disease. This presentation shows and explains some of our current models.

Presenter

Emily Don completed a Bachelor of Medical Science (Hons) at the University of Sydney in 2009 and went on to do her PhD in developmental genetics in zebra fish. In 2013, Emily joined the Macquarie University Motor Neuron Disease Research Centre, and she is currently creating zebra fish models of motor neuron disease in order to gain a better understanding of this terrible disease.

How do our brains make sense of our movements and intentions?

This presentation explains presenter Dr Simmy Poonian’s research using psychological and cognitive tests to investigate the ways in which we understand our own goal-directed movements and those of other people.

Presenter

Dr Simmy Poonian is an Associate Investigator at the Australian Research Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders, which is hosted by the Department of Cognitive Science at Macquarie University.

Simmy uses psychology, cognitive and neuroscience techniques to study how our expectations about the world around us influence aspects of action control, action-effect processing, observation of others’ actions and attributions of causality. Simmy is passionate about encouraging students to approach science as an exciting endeavour and as a potential career option.

An early career researcher’s journey through academia while travelling around the world

Presenter Dr Simmy Poonian demonstrates why science and research is important. She focuses on her own career in science and the academic world, and explains how science provided her with opportunities to live in different parts of the world and why science is great!

Presenter

Dr Simmy Poonian is an Associate Investigator at the Australian Research Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders, which is hosted by the Department of Cognitive Science at Macquarie University.

Simmy uses psychology, cognitive and neuroscience techniques to study how our expectations about the world around us influence aspects of action control, action-effect processing, observation of others’ actions and attributions of causality. Simmy is passionate about encouraging students to approach science as an exciting endeavour and as a potential career option.

Law, security and intelligence

What do Criminologists actually Do?

This presentation will introduce students to the discipline of criminology, from its first appearances to the modern, high-tech discipline we have today. Presenter Dr Rolando Ochoa will talk about the questions criminologists tackle. For example, why does crime vary across space and time? Why do people tend to stop offending as they get older? How do drug cartels recruit new members? Why are indigenous people over-represented in prison? Rolando will also discuss what jobs opportunities there are for criminologists in the public service, private sector and academia.

Presenter

Dr. Rolando Ochoa holds a PhD in Sociology and an MPhil in Latin American studies from the University of Oxford, UK. His research focuses on organised crime, extra-legal governance, and trust in Latin America.  

International security: Nuclear proliferation in Australia’s backyard

How would the North Korean development of strategic nuclear missiles – those capable of targeting the United States – influence its foreign policy? Policymakers and scholars have argued that such a strategic breakthrough could have stabilising or destabilising effects. This presentation investigates the complex and vitally important world of today and tomorrow’s international security affairs.

Presenter

Dr Michael Cohen is a senior lecturer in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. He has more than ten years’ experience in teaching and research at universities in Australia, Canada and Denmark. Michael’s research interests include the causes of interstate conflict and war, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region. Michael has written two books on this topic and has published research in several international journals.

Why do people become terrorists?

Mad, bad and irrational. These terms are often used to describe terrorists but do little to explain what lies behind decisions to engage in violent extremism. Instead, they actually reinforce the aim of terrorists to generate and exacerbate societal fears. This talk unpacks the complex interplay between local and international perceptions and grievances that generate the conditions in which decisions to engage in violent extremism become a credible and desirable reality for some individuals.

Presenter

Lise Waldek is a terrorism expert in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. She works extensively providing expert sociocultural advice on violent extremism to government departments in Australia and the United Kingdom. Her research experience incorporates anthropology, international relations, terrorism, and violent extremism. She is currently leading a government-funded research project exploring the relationship between online and offline violent extremist behaviour.

Is right-wing extremism a growing problem?

Islamist-inspired violent extremism generates the majority of media and political debate in today’s society. Yet across Europe and America there has been a serious resurgence of right-wing organisations campaigning on platforms of extreme anti-Islamic and anti-immigrant popularist platforms. This talk explores a critical assessment of the threat posed by such groups and asks the question: ‘whether or not current anti-terrorist measures are themselves generating a potentially dangerous backlash’.

Presenter

Lise Waldek is a terrorism expert in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. She works extensively providing expert sociocultural advice on violent extremism to government departments in Australia and the United Kingdom. Her research experience incorporates anthropology, international relations, terrorism, and violent extremism. She is currently leading a government-funded research project exploring the relationship between online and offline violent extremist behaviour.

The end of the War on Drugs?

This presentation examines the effects of enforcement-led global drug prohibition known as the War on Drugs. Other countries are increasingly looking to alternative models in response to illicit drugs. We explore what these alternatives are and whether they offer a better approach in dealing with the dangers of illicit drugs when compared to contemporary prohibition.

Presenter

Dr James Martin is a senior lecturer and convener of the Criminology program in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. James is one of the world's foremost experts in the study of online illicit drug markets, and he was awarded the 2015 New Scholar Prize by the Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology for his recently published book Drugs on the Dark Net: How Cryptomarkets are Transforming the Global Trade in Illicit Drugs.

What is the ‘Islamic State’ and can it be defeated?

Many people are confused as to the nature of the Islamic State and what level of threat it poses for Australians. This talk explains the origins and nature of this strange organisation, and gives a critical and balanced assessment of the risks it poses to the international community, and what could potentially be done to stop it.

Presenter

Dr Julian Droogan is a terrorism expert in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. His research experience incorporates the areas of comparative religions, anthropology, terrorism, and violent extremism. He works closely with the NSW Premier on countering violent extremism issues in New South Wales and leads a number of terrorism-related research projects.

Should Australians be afraid of terrorism?

We hear a lot about terrorism in the media and from politicians. But few people really understand the strategic and tactical realities of what terrorism actually is. This talk unpacks and demystifies terrorism as a method of political violence. It also presents a critical and balanced assessment of just how afraid Australians should be of terrorism and raises the possibility that it is fear and overreaction that is actually more dangerous than the terrorist attacks themselves.

Presenter

Dr Julian Droogan is a terrorism expert in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. His research experience incorporates the areas of comparative religions, anthropology, terrorism, and violent extremism. He works closely with the NSW Premier on countering violent extremism issues in New South Wales and leads a number of terrorism-related research projects.

Has the internet become a weapon?

Issues such as cybersecurity, cybercrime and cyberterrorism have attracted a lot of attention in recent years. This talk looks at the ways in which the internet has been used by extremist and terrorist groups. In particular, it explains the issues of online radicalisation, the spread of extremist messages through social media and what can be done by young people to better protect themselves online.

Presenter

Dr Julian Droogan is a terrorism expert in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. His research experience incorporates the areas of comparative religions, anthropology, terrorism, and violent extremism. He works closely with the NSW Premier on countering violent extremism issues in New South Wales and leads a number of terrorism-related research projects.

Why did the United States’ military – the most powerful army the world has ever known – fail to defeat a band of hills-men in Afghanistan and a ragtag militia in Iraq?

Being more powerful than another actor is supposed to mean that you can get your own way. This was not the case for the United States in Iraq and Afghanistan. This talk introduces students to some of the contending arguments for why the United States failed so spectacularly in its most recent wars in the Middle East. It is critically important to reflect on these issues as the United States becomes increasingly involved in the battle against ISIS.

Presenter

Dr. Adam Lockyer is a Senior Lecturer in security studies in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. He was the 2015 Fulbright Scholar on US-Australian alliance studies and winner of the 2012 Boyer Award for the best original journal article in the Australian Journal of International Affairs. His research expertise includes civil wars and insurgencies, US politics and foreign policy and Australian defence policy and strategy.

Will the United States and China go to war in our lifetime?

As tensions grow in the South China Sea between the United States and China, it is critical to ask: what are the prospects for war in Asia? On the one hand, economic and trade links between the two countries mean that any war between them would be immensely costly to both. Surely, this means that Washington and Beijing will avoid war at all costs. But, on the other hand, as China attempts to rewrite the rules in East Asia to better reflect how it sees the new distribution of power, the United States has shown no signs that it will relinquish its position and accommodate China. Surely this means that they are on a collision course. This talk explores the prospects for war and peace between Australia’s largest trading partner and its security guarantor.

Presenter

Dr Adam Lockyer is a senior lecturer in Security Studies in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. He was the 2015 Fulbright Scholar on the United States–Australian alliance studies and winner of the 2012 Boyer Prize for the best original journal article in the Australian Journal of International Affairs. His research expertise includes civil wars and insurgencies, United States politics and foreign policy, and Australian defence policy and strategy.

What is an arms race?

The arms race is a popular term in both media and scholarship to describe the acquisition of armaments. This presentation examines what exactly is meant when states are ‘arms racing’, what kinds of weapons platforms are typically acquired when states compete, and what are the overall political objectives when states compete using armaments. This presentation then discusses the current case of Asia-Pacific and if the region is undergoing an arms race.

Presenter

Sheryn Lee is an associate lecturer in Security Studies in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. She is completing her thesis at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, Australian National University, on naval arms acquisitions in East Asia. Her research concerns arms racing and military modernisation, Taiwan-China relations, and political violence.

Who has the legitimate use of force?

One of the most pervasive questions is who has the legal and moral right to the use of force. This presentation examines the internal sources of armed conflict and the strategies of political violence used by both state and non-state actors. Often states are considered to be the legitimate arbiters of force; however, in many cases a state will use its monopoly on violence against its own body politic to further its own political objectives.

Presenter

Sheryn Lee is an associate lecturer in Security Studies in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University. She is completing her thesis at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, Australian National University, on naval arms acquisitions in East Asia. Her research concerns arms racing and military modernisation, Taiwan-China relations, and political violence.

Media, creative arts and communication

Become a public relations and social media strategist!

This workshop will include a brief introduction to public relations and the use of social media as well as present a scenario and mentoring as students have a go at putting together a campaign! Students may like to work in groups as 'PR agencies' and use their own mobile devices to further develop their social media campaigns after the workshop and send it to the presenter for further feedback.

Presenter

Dr Lauren Gorfinkel is a Lecturer in International Communication, specialising in research on Chinese media and teaching in the areas of global media, international television and public relations. She is happy to speak to students about the type of work people in public relations do, guide students through a practical experience of putting together a PR campaign, or work with teachers on how to actively engage students from non-English language backgrounds in everyday teaching in ways that allows students to draw on their other language skills and share insights from their multilingual experiences.

Creative musical expressions, realities and futures 

Music. Song. Voice. The ways in which they are now applied in the new music industries extend beyond traditional musical boundaries and contexts. This discussion focuses on the impact of digitisation on musical artists, audiences and the industry and considers the future of music and potential technologies.

Presenter

Associate Professor Diane Hughes lectures in Vocal Studies and Music at Macquarie University. Her research areas include the singing voice, pedagogy, film and sound, recording practices, songwriting, the music industries, and popular music and song. She is co-author of The New Music Industries: Disruption and Discovery and is currently the National President of the Australian National Association of Teachers of Singing Ltd.

Film editing: cutting rhythms 

The film editor is a screen storyteller, responsible for shaping the structure and rhythm of a film.  But how do editors make decisions about which shot to use, where and for how long?  This presentation will develop your students filmmaking intuition and artistry by learning more about what an editor does. 

Presenter

Karen Pearlman is the author of Cutting Rhythms, Intuitive Film Editing an international textbook on the art of editing that is now in its 2nd edition and has been translated into Korean and Chinese. She is a former President of the Australian Screen Editors Guild and a four-time nominee for best editing at the guild’s annual awards. 

K-pop down under

Australia's pop music has been dominated by influences from the USA and UK — until recently. Global media flows, the internet, and a changing media industry have allowed audiences to seek out alternative music and entertainment, including K-pop. This presentation explores the use and value of music as cultural diplomacy, and the diversification of Australian popular culture.          

Presenter

Dr Sarah Keith is a lecturer in music and media at Macquarie University. Her research areas include Korean and Japanese popular music and culture, the Australian music industries, and music and cultural policy. She is currently exploring the relationship between K-pop and (multi)cultural understanding.

Why circus is good for your brain and your body

New research from Canada, Finland, New Zealand and Australia is showing what circus artists have known for some time - circus is good for you, emotionally, physically and mentally. Presenter Jon Burtt talks about his background as a performer, teacher and researcher in the circus arts and why circus teaches not only physical literacy but also other life-long skills such as emotional and mental resilience.        

Presenter

Jon Burtt is a lecturer in dance and performance studies at Macquarie University. He has a background as a performer, creator and academic in the Australian and International performing arts industry. He has taught in a diversity of contexts including in remote indigenous communities, in circus schools, and in dance conservatories. At Macquarie University he teaches a combination of performance practice and cultural theory across dance, theatre and circus studies.

Science

Giant telescopes

This presentation discusses the brief history of the telescope, modern giant telescopes and the future of observatories.

Presenter

Dr Richard McDermid obtained his PhD from Durham University in the United Kingdom. He worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Leiden University in the Netherlands, before becoming a staff astronomer at Gemini Observatory in Hawaii and then came to Australia to lecture at Macquarie University. His research studies the properties of galaxies, using large telescopes to measure how their stars form, evolve and move. This gives clues to how galaxies change over time and can be used to detect super-massive black holes.

Measuring supermassive black holes with lasers

What is a black hole? How do we measure their mass? Why are they important? This presentation will give you the answers!

Presenter

Dr Richard McDermid obtained his PhD from Durham University in the United Kingdom. He worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Leiden University in the Netherlands, before becoming a staff astronomer at Gemini Observatory in Hawaii and then came to Australia to lecture at Macquarie University. His research studies the properties of galaxies, using large telescopes to measure how their stars form, evolve and move. This gives clues to how galaxies change over time and can be used to detect super-massive black holes.

Exploring other worlds

This presentation provides a tour of the solar system and looks towards extrasolar planets.

Presenter

Dr Richard McDermid obtained his PhD from Durham University in the United Kingdom. He worked as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands, before becoming a staff astronomer at Gemini Observatory in Hawaii, and then came to Australia to lecture at Macquarie University. His research studies the properties of galaxies, using large telescopes to measure how their stars form, evolve and move. This gives clues to how galaxies change over time, and can be used to detect super-massive black holes.

Building a galaxy in our backyard: How the Milky Way formed and evolved

Understanding how galaxies form and change over time is one of the major areas of research in modern astronomy. This presentation discusses how we can study our own galaxy – the Milky Way – in detail to learn about the formation and evolution of galaxies throughout the universe.

Presenter

Associate Professor Daniel Zucker completed his undergraduate degree at Harvard University and PhD at the University of Washington in the United States, before moving overseas for postdoctoral research at the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany, and the Institute of Astronomy in the United Kingdom. Daniel has been at Macquarie University for more than seven years and holds a joint position with the Australian Astronomical Observatory.

Where mathematics can take you

Do your students want to know what they can do with mathematics, what their career prospects might be, what jobs it can lead to, how much they can get paid or even how mathematics will help their studies in other areas? If so, this presentation is for you. This talk will present students with up-to-date information on possible career pathways for students interested in mathematics and where it can take their career.

Presenter

Jim is Head of the Department of Mathematics at Macquarie University. He works in applied mathematics where he's interested in developing models of how the real world behaves and uses mathematics to predict and understand this behaviour.

Society, history and languages

Climate justice: impacts, responsibility and action

Since climate change became a social and political issue, questions of justice have been at the forefront of debates. This talk will explore the justice and equity issues associated with climate change in terms of why climate change is an issue for justice, who is responsible for addressing climate change and action that we can take. 

Presenter

Dr Sara Fuller is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Geography and Planning at Macquarie University. She previously worked in the UK and Hong Kong before arriving in Australia. Her research explores the ethical and justice dimensions of climate change, particularly focusing on grassroots, community and NGO responses to the climate challenge.

Acknowledging Indigenous water knowledges in Australia

Indigenous water knowledges and values are often marginalised in rural and urban water planning processes. Drawing on research in the Kimberley with Miriuwung and Gajerrong peoples, in Mudgee with Wiradjuri peoples, and online for urban policy, this presentation looks at what is happening in recognising Indigenous water knowledges, and what we can do better.  

Presenter

Jess McLean lived in northern Australia and worked collaboratively with Indigenous peoples for her PhD research to analyse how water mattered in that context. Her current focus is on urban and regional New South Wales and considers how water planning could be improved. Her research draws on an environmental justice approach that asks what we can do to achieve more sustainable and just outcomes in water decision-making processes for all. 

Benefits of language learning

Language learning has many cognitive and social benefits. This talk explores the opportunities and challenges of bilingual education. While Australia has a huge potential for fostering a multilingual population, it risks being left behind Asia and Europe because of its failure to invest in language education.

Presenter

Dr Ingrid Piller is Professor of Applied Linguistics at Macquarie University. Ingrids research expertise is in the fields of intercultural communication, bilingual education and the sociolinguistics of language learning and multilingualism in the contexts of migration and globalization. She blogs about her research at www.languageonthemove.com and tweets at @Lg_on_the_Move

Answering life's big questions

Doing philosophy involves asking questions about concepts that are central to our lives:  What is a just society? What makes humans different from animals? What is morality? What can I know about the world? What makes me the person that I am? Do we have free will? 

But how are such questions to be answered? This presentation will look at one way philosophers engage with questions like these, by making use of 'thought experiments'.   

Presenter

Dr Jenny Duke-Yonge is a Lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at Macquarie University. Her main areas of teaching are epistemology and logic. Her research interests include epistemology, truth, and philosophical and pedagogical issues to do with reasoning.

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