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April 2018

FameLab semi-finals 2018

FameLab 2018 semi-final highlights

“With artificial intelligence taking over routine tasks, there will be immense opportunities for people who combine creative, technical and social skills - skills that are resilient to future automation.” Creative Industries Federation and NESTA 2018

Engaging the public with our future in science and technology, communicating scientific concepts and their relevance to society requires specialist skills. To date thirty-six FameLab Australia 2018 finalists have told us compelling stories that included a zombie apocalypse, the social science of selfies, the use of drones to collect whale “snot” and a crisp three minute explanation of quantum computing. The Western Australia semi-final will take place on Wednesday 18th April.

At the Queensland Museum twelve brilliant semi-finalist researchers received a full day of specialist training by Emma Donnelly and Claire Patterson. The judging panel included Queensland Chief Scientist Dr Christine Williams, Director, British Council Australia Helen Salmon, and CEO of Queensland Museum Dr Jim Thompson, with Master of Ceremonies Jenni Metcalfe. Congratulations to the winner Zane Štromberga and to Taryn Laubenstein who swept both the runner-up and audience choice awards.

FameLab semi-finalists in Victoria made the most of their three minutes of 'fame' with ABC Science presenter MC Niral Lal. Congratulations to Toby Hendy and Anisa Rowhani-Farid for their charismatic presentations to an audience of nearly 200, and for securing a spot in the national final. British Consul-General Chris Holtby OBE came to enjoy their STEM stories, which were evaluated by Lead Scientist, Victorian Government Dr Amanda Caples, Former Director, British Council Australia Helen O'Neil and Manager, Educations & Community Programs of Museums Victoria Linda Sproul.

New South Wales
Congratulations to the winner Richard Charlesworth, runner up Khandis Blake and audience choice winner Vanessa Pirotta. The judges were ABC Science Editor, Dr Jonathan Webb, Helen O'Neil and FameLab 2017 International runner up Dr Nural Cokcetin. We were honoured to have British Consul-General Michael Ward present to encourage to the participants.

The 2018 FameLab national final will be held in the Octagon Theatre at the University of Western Australia on the Thursday 10th May. Please register HERE if you wish to attend.

Our media partner Australia's Science Channel will be live streaming the event nationally at from AWST 18.30 on Thursday 10th May 2018.



WOW 2018: Women of the Commonwealth

Women of the Commonwealth

Hundreds enjoy an incredible three days at the Brisbane Powerhouse for WOW (Women of the World) Festival, part of the Commonwealth Games cultural program, Festival 2018.
Jude Kelly CBE, Artistic Director of Southbank Centre London, launched WOW in 2010 as a major festival where hundreds of women’s stories could be shared, feelings vented and minds expanded. It has since grown to be a global movement, and the Brisbane edition brought together women and girls from over 20 countries in the Commonwealth.
British Council was thrilled to support Margaret Busby OBE, Britain’s youngest and first black woman book publisher and Jayanthi Kuru-Utumpala, gender equality specialist and the first Sri Lankan to summit Mount Everest. You can read the work of Ms Busby and other participants in the Commonwealth Now edition of Griffith Review

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Speaking your truth at Festival 2018

‘Who has power over you and what do you want to say to them?’ Truth to Power Café was a rare opportunity for people of all ages, beliefs and backgrounds within the Gold Coast community to stand up on stage for five minutes and respond to this question.
Truth to Power Café was part of the Commonwealth Games cultural program, Festival 2018. Jeremy Goldstein of London Artists Projects began this international exploration into the power of free speech and political activism in an acclaimed UK tour. He has since received support from the British Council and Arts Council of England’s Artists International Development Fund (AIDF) to develop the work for the Leeuwarden European Capital of Culture celebrations in The Netherlands, and will subsequently tour this powerful theatrical experience to Croatia.

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UK artists at the 21st Biennale of Sydney

From now until 11 June, the 21st Biennale of Sydney is transforming the city into installation spaces for provocative and thought-provoking art. We're proud to be supporting a number of UK artists to exhibit at this year's Biennale, including: Oliver Beer, Anya Gallaccio, Ryan Gander, Ciara Phillips and Semiconductor.
The theme for this year's exhibition is SUPERPOSITION: Equilibrium & Engagement. The 21st Biennale of Sydney is presenting at seven of the city’s most respected museums, galleries and non-traditional exhibition spaces: Art Gallery of NSW (AGNSW), Artspace, Carriageworks, Cockatoo Island, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA), Sydney Opera House and 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art.

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CONVERGENCE Festival in London

Held annually in March, CONVERGENCE celebrates cross art form innovators and takes an in depth look at the latest technology and trends that will give rise to the exciting new work of tomorrow. A continuing partnership with the British Council brought together an international delegation of promotors, festival organisers and producers to generate ideas with their counterparts in London.
We were thrilled to support Brian Ritchie’s participation at this year’s event. In Brian’s capacity as Music Curator at Mona (Museum of Old and New Art) he leads MONA FOMA (MONA Festival of Music and Art) combining music, sound art, visual art, dance, spoken word and theatre. Brian’s programming is based on ideas, individuality and collaboration rather than a style driven approach.

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Sydney Writers’ Festival

We're excited to be supporting two outstanding writers from the UK to take part in the 2018 Sydney Writers Festival from 30 April - 6 May.
Yrsa Daley-Ward is a writer, LGBTQ activist and poet of West Indian and West African heritage. Her debut poetry collection Bone is a poignant collection of poems about the heart, life, and the inner self, examining the alchemy between mind and body, with subjects ranging from hunger, trauma, desire, race and sexuality.
Angela Saini is a British writer and science journalist, who presents science programmes on BBC Radio 4 and the World Service. Her book, Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong - and the New Research That's Rewriting the Story, takes readers on a journey to uncover science’s failure to understand women.

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Going Global image

Global Connections, Local Impact

This year’s Going Global conference for leaders of international education takes place on 2 - 4 May 2018, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, Malaysia.
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has recently realised a five-decade dream of bringing together its ten member states to form an economic community to bring social progress, stability and greater opportunity to the region.
With 15 million students enrolled across the region, at the heart of this transformation is the role of tertiary education, it’s contribution to society, cultural understanding, economic growth and employability. Australians are invited to join over 900 leaders of Higher Education from 80 countries to exploring the opportunities and challenges as we enter what has been described as ‘the Asian Century’.

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