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Today's date is Saturday, October 24, 2020
Science for the Community
 February 2013
Friday 01
9:00 - EVENT - SPICE PD, Regional Visits and Travelling Scientist : The Travelling Scientist accompanies the SPICE team when they visit regional schools. The Travelling Scientist, a young PhD student, talks to students about their journey in science Website | More Information
SPICE Events are designed to expose high school science teachers to exciting new science by increasing interaction between teachers and researchers at UWA. They provide the opportunity for teachers to engage in current research and learn new ideas for the classroom, and usually contain a range of activities including hands-on lab sessions, field trips or presentations showcasing cutting-edge research. We expect the heightened engagement and interaction between teachers and tertiary scientists to have a significant impact upon the enthusiasm of teachers for science.

See website for dates and further details.

9:00 - WORKSHOP - SPICE Learning Technology and Science Workshops : For High School science teachers Website | More Information
SPICE Events are designed to expose high school science teachers to exciting new science by increasing interaction between teachers and researchers at UWA. They provide the opportunity for teachers to engage in current research and learn new ideas for the classroom, and usually contain a range of activities including hands-on lab sessions, field trips or presentations showcasing cutting-edge research. We expect the heightened engagement and interaction between teachers and tertiary scientists to have a significant impact upon the enthusiasm of teachers for science.

See website for dates and further details.
Saturday 16
17:00 - FESTIVAL - Astrofest : An astronomical extravaganza More Information
'Astrofest' is an astronomical extravaganza, featuring a range of interesting and engaging activities for anyone and everyone to enjoy whether they're 'astro-nerds' or 'cosmic-newbies'.

Astrofest will start before the sun sets, with displays, information booths 'space domes' and activities. Then after the sun goes down Night sky observing will get underway. Plus science talks given by local astronomers, stalls and displays from local societies, groups, organisations and Universities and an Astrophotography exhibition.
Wednesday 20
10:00 - EVENT - UWA Turf Research Program Open Day : Managing turfgrass on a water allocation Website | More Information
You are invited to an informal Open Day at the UWA Turf Research Facility to see how different water allocations, in combination with wetting-agents, have influenced the development of dry-patch. A brief presentation will commence at 10:15am sharp. Please remember to wear sturdy footwear, as the site is very sandy. RSVP appreciated
Friday 22
15:00 - PUBLIC TALK - Shakespearean Ontogeny : Public talk with Dr. Richard Paul Hamilton Website | More Information
There is a popular view of biological development which goes something like this. Biological form is the cumulative result of internal genetic forces and external environmental ones. Like all models in biology this rather neat view had the advantage of allowing researchers to navigate a path through the bewildering complexity of organic life. But like all metaphors it comes at the price of bewitchment. As Wittgenstein writes in Philosophical Investigations 115: “a picture held us captive and we could not escape it because it lay in our language”. One consequence of this bewitchment is that explanatory privilege was given to the internal 'code' enshrined in the DNA, a view most famously (or notoriously) associated with Richard Dawkins' gene-centric account of evolution. This apparently resolved a number of outstanding puzzles in theoretical biology notably the transmission of stable form across generations.

In this context, the Human Genome Project can be seen as the most fruitful failure in scientific history. Such a claim may seem puzzling, since the Human Genome Project might be considered a success, not least in the numerous promising advances in medicine that it presaged. Nevertheless, the somewhat hyperbolic claim that it would finally unlock the secret code which would reveal what it means to be human have been largely unfulfilled and with good reason. There never was such a code.

The last two decades in the biological sciences can be characterised by the slogan: Taking Development Seriously. Whereas the neo-Darwinian mathematical modellers tended to treat the actual process of development as a black box, a sustained effort is now underway to explain the relationship between evolution (phylogeny) and organismic development (ontogeny). One thing has become clear: the simple dichotomous picture of gene and environment is inadequate, even as a simplifying device. DNA rarely exists in isolation and where it does it is inert. There is no reason to give DNA causal or explanatory privilege in developmental processes. Rather, development is a complex and contingent process in which the developing organism constructs itself and to some extent its developmental environment from the resources at hand. The organism makes its own history albeit not in circumstances of its choosing.

If the code metaphor is no longer adequate what can replace it? In this talk I will suggest a new and hopefully fruitful analogy which might capture some of the complexities involved. I will compare the process of biological development to the construction of a Shakespearean play. As Shakespeare scholars have long known there are no definitive Shakespeare texts and it seems likely that Shakespeare never actually sat down and wrote Hamlet or Much Ado About Nothing. Rather the plays were workshopped and Shakespeare provided prompt notes to the players. The texts with which we are familiar are re-constructions of performances which have been handed down corrected and interpreted through numerous generations. Most crucially every new performance of Shakespeare is an interpretation be it a group of Lesbian players doing in Hamlet in Soweto or an 'authentic Elizabethan dress' performance at the Globe in London. Moreover, every performance takes place in a rich and complex interpretative environment and the audience plays as much a role in the play's construction as the author or players.

Similarly, all the natural world is a stage, or so I shall argue.

Dr. Richard Paul Hamilton completed a PhD on love as a social phenomenon, under the supervision of Professors Susan James and Jennifer Hornsby at Birkbeck College, The University of London. He works on moral philosophy, the philosophy of the emotions, the philosophy of action and the philosophy of social sciences with particular interests in the legal definition of morally contested concepts. His most recent publications have dealt with evolutionary psychology and love as an essentially contested concept. He is currently engaged in a project investigating the biological bases of moral conduct. Before arriving at Notre Dame, he taught at the University of Manchester, the University of Leeds and Manchester Metropolitan University.
Thursday 28
14:00 - Closing date - The Australian Brain Bee - neuroscience competition for high school students : Closing date for Round 1 registrations Website | More Information
The Australian Brain Bee Challenge (ABBC) motivates young people to learn about the brain – and has been created to inspire students to pursue careers in neuroscience research.

As Australia’s only neuroscience competition for high school students, the ABBC is an event that will have you expanding your hemispheres!

The Brain Bee Challenge is a test of knowledge about important facts concerning intelligence, memory, emotions, sensations, movement, stress, aging, sleep, Alzheimer’s disease and stroke.

 March 2013
Friday 01
9:00 - EVENT - SPICE PD, Regional Visits and Travelling Scientist : The Travelling Scientist accompanies the SPICE team when they visit regional schools. The Travelling Scientist, a young PhD student, talks to students about their journey in science More Information
SPICE Events are designed to expose high school science teachers to exciting new science by increasing interaction between teachers and researchers at UWA. They provide the opportunity for teachers to engage in current research and learn new ideas for the classroom, and usually contain a range of activities including hands-on lab sessions, field trips or presentations showcasing cutting-edge research. We expect the heightened engagement and interaction between teachers and tertiary scientists to have a significant impact upon the enthusiasm of teachers for science.

See website for dates and further details.

9:00 - WORKSHOP - SPICE Learning Technology and Science Workshops : For high school science teachers Website | More Information
SPICE Events are designed to expose high school science teachers to exciting new science by increasing interaction between teachers and researchers at UWA. They provide the opportunity for teachers to engage in current research and learn new ideas for the classroom, and usually contain a range of activities including hands-on lab sessions, field trips or presentations showcasing cutting-edge research. We expect the heightened engagement and interaction between teachers and tertiary scientists to have a significant impact upon the enthusiasm of teachers for science.

See website for dates and further details.

9:00 - STUDENT EVENT - UWA Campus Challenge : Opening date for applications for current year 10-12 students Website | More Information
A event run in the July school holidays for prospective UWA students. Dates and program yet to be confirmed.

Campus Challenge aims to provide high school students with the opportunity to experience different aspects of university life through participation in academic, sporting, recreational and social activities on campus at The University of Western Australia.

The main objective of the camp is to enable students to make vital decisions about their future tertiary education by exposing them to all aspects of university life.

15:00 - PUBLIC TALK - Token Skepticism: Podcasting Science And Pop Culture : Public talk with Science Podcaster Kylie Sturgess Website | More Information
An investigation of science podcasting, using social media and the reach of online radio. What is podcasting, what can it contribute to the understanding of science and what are the pros and cons of using such a medium? Kylie Sturgess has been podcasting since 2005, and brings her experience and research into the medium of science podcasting under the microscope.

Kylie Sturgess is a Philosophy teacher, who has lectured on pseudoscientific and anomalistic beliefs worldwide. She is the host of the Token Skeptic podcast, a show that looks at the intersection of science, media and pop culture. Kylie writes for a number of publications, including CSICOP’s ‘Curiouser and Curiouser’ online column, and enjoys combining her love of art, science, and social media as a means of communicating science to the public.
Monday 11
9:15 - EVENT - The Australian Brain Bee : Online quiz held in high schools during Brain Awareness Week More Information
Round 1 (Online Quiz): During Brain Awareness Week 11-15 March 2013 and the following week 18-22 March 2013 - see website register and for further details.

The Australian Brain Bee Challenge (ABBC) motivates young people to learn about the brain – and has been created to inspire students to pursue careers in neuroscience research.

As Australia’s only neuroscience competition for high school students, the ABBC is an event that will have you expanding your hemispheres!

The Brain Bee Challenge is a test of knowledge about important facts concerning intelligence, memory, emotions, sensations, movement, stress, aging, sleep, Alzheimer’s disease and stroke.
Friday 15
15:00 - PUBLIC TALK - A Theatre of Individuation: Theorising BioArt Encounters after Gilbert Simondon : Public talk with Andrew Lapworth Website | More Information
Characterised by interdisciplinary practices at the intersections of arts, sciences, and biotechnologies, the emergent artistic genre of "bioart" is increasingly lauded within the social science literature as a crucial arena through which question and unsettle deep-rooted cultural perceptions of life and the individual, the concept of the self, and the position of the human in relation to other (more-than-human) bodies and the environment (Born and Barry, 2010; Dixon, 2009; Hauser, 2006). It is this understanding of the capacity of bioart to effect ontological change that I want to develop further in this paper through a theorisation of art-encounters as "ontogenetic events" that materially produce, rather than merely represent, subjects and worlds. To address this ontogenetic potential of bioart, the paper turns to Gilbert Simondon's philosophy of individuation, and the conceptual terrain he develops to rethink being from the standpoint of its becoming. First, I explore how a philosophy of individuation pushes our contemporary understandings of the subject through an attentiveness to its emergence from material and affective processes that both precede and go beyond it, as well as its susceptibility to immanent disruption through the shock of encounter. Secondly, I argue that Simondon opens up the possibility of theorising this evental potential of bioart by emphasising the preindividual affective forces and processes of the art-encounter, and the disorienting transformations in being these bring about. By rendering sensible and reworking molecular, material, and technological agencies implicated in the constitution of the subject, bioart can be understood to open a space of experimentation with modes of expression and experience in their very coming-into-presence. I unpack these arguments empirically through an engagement with the bioartistic practices of the Tissue Culture and Art Project, whose "semi-living" bioart, I argue, stages a disruption of pernicious contemporary habits in favour of new and creative capacities for thinking, perceiving, and relating to the nonhuman.

Andrew Lapworth completed his undergraduate degree in Geography at the University of Bristol, writing his undergraduate dissertation on the relation between the cinematic image, temporality, and subjectivity in post-Franco Spanish cinema through the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze. After living and working in Paris for a year, Lapworth successfully received an ESRC 1+3 studentship and returned to the School of Geographical Sciences in 2009 to undertake the MSc in Society and Space. It was during this year that Lapworth developed an interest in spaces and practices of ‘art-science’, and wrote his thesis on the non-representational politics of contemporary bioart. Following his Masters year he enrolled as a PhD candidate in October 2010, and successfully upgraded in October 2011. Supervised by Dr. J-D Dewsbury and Dr. Maria Fannin, his current PhD research explores the practices, logics and ethico-political potentials of contemporary ‘laboratories’ of transversal and experimental artistic research (including SymbioticA in Perth, Western Australia, and the Institut fur Raumexperimente in Berlin). Theoretically, Lapworth draws together recent philosophies of ontogenesis, new materialisms & vitalisms, and bioaesthetic theories to explore how material processes, aesthetic conditions and experimental practices in these sites reciprocally imbricate through one another to provide the means for constituting (including conceptually) subjectivity, political possibility, and artistic practice.
Tuesday 19
11:00 - EVENT - Enviro Fest '13 : UWA Enviro Fest aims to empower UWA students and staff to reduce their environmental impact, and increase their appreciation of the natural environment. Website | More Information
UWA Enviro Fest aims to empower UWA students and staff to reduce their environmental impact, and increase their appreciation of the natural environment.

Each year Enviro Fest provides opportunities to indulge your interest in the natural environment and learn more about sustainable initiatives on campus. From gardening workshops, to live animal demonstrations to public discussions of important environmental issues, there’s something for all staff, students and their children. If you'd like to get involved with the Enviro Fest event, by holding an sustainability-related information stall or educational activity contact UWA Sustainable Development or the Guild's Event Manager.

With the added benefit of being held in common lunch hour, Enviro Fest '13 promises to be one of the year's biggest, most diverse, exciting, and unique events.
Friday 22
15:00 - PUBLIC TALK - Postcards From the North : Public talk with Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr Website | More Information
Between August 2012 and February 2013 SymbioticA's Oron Catts & Ionat Zurr seconded to Aalto University in Helsinki, to help establish Biofilia- Base for Biological Arts. The resulting hybrid lab, launched in February, is a fully functioning state-of-the-art tissue engineering and molecular biology facility, situated in the Electrical Engineering School, operated by the faculty of Art, Design and Architecture.

This lecture will discuss the trials, tribulations and lessons from the trip, while reflecting upon some of the conferences and events that Catts & Zurr participated in over the last six months. In doing so the talk will address the international perception and expanding interest in the field of Biological Arts.

www.biofilia.aalto.fi/en

Oron Catts

Oron Catts is the Director of SymbioticA, The Centre of Excellence in Biological Arts, School of Anatomy, Physiology and Human Biology, UWA, and a Visiting Professor of Design Interaction, Royal College of Arts, London. Oron Catts is an artist, researcher and curator whose pioneering work with the Tissue Culture and Art Project which he established in 1996 is considered a leading biological art project. In 2000 he founded SymbioticA, an artistic research centre housed within the School of Anatomy, Physiology and Human Biology, UWA. Under Catts’ leadership SymbioticA has gone on to win the Prix Ars Electronica Golden Nica in Hybrid Art (2007) and became a Centre for Excellence in 2008. In 2009 Catts was recognised by Thames & Hudson’s “60 Innovators Shaping our Creative Future” book in the category “Beyond Design”, and by Icon Magazine (UK) as one of the top 20 Designers, “making the future and transforming the way we work”. Catts’ interest is Life; more specifically the shifting relations and perceptions of life in the light of new knowledge and it applications. Often working in collaboration with other artists (mainly Dr. Ionat Zurr) and scientists, Catts has developed a body of work that speak volumes about the need for new cultural articulation of evolving concepts of life. Catts was a Research Fellow in Harvard Medical School and a visiting Scholar at the Department of Art and Art History, Stanford University.

Dr Ionat Zurr

Ionat Zurr is an artist, curator, researcher and Academic Coordinator at SymbioticA. An award winning artist and researcher, Zurr formed, together with Oron Catts, the Tissue Culture and Art Project. She has been an artist in residence in the School of Anatomy and Human Biology since 1996. Zurr, who received her PhD titled "Growing Semi Living Art" from the Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Visual Arts, is considered a pioneer in the field of biological arts and her work has been exhibited internationally. Zurr has studied art history, photography and media studies. She was a research fellow at the Tissue Engineering and Organ Fabrication Laboratory, Harvard Medical School from 2000 and 2001. Her PhD via SymbioticA examined the ethical and epistemological implications of wet biology art practices.
Tuesday 26
13:00 - SEMINAR - Research Reflections of a Biomechanics Professor : A Seminar by Emeritus Professor Bruce Elliott More Information
Professor Bruce Elliott was the senior biomechanist and the former Head of the School of Sport Science, Exercise and Health at The University of Western Australia. He was the inaugural chair of the Western Australian Institute of Sport (1984-1994) and served as the Scientific Chair for the 5th IOC World Congress on Sport Sciences and supervised the research projects at the Sydney 2000 Olympics. In 1999 he was honoured with the Award of Merit by the Western Australian Sports Federation and in 2003 the Professional Tennis Registry gave him the Stanley Palgenhoef Sport Science Award for "his lifetime contribution to tennis" and the Australian Government awarded him their Centenary Medal for "service to sport policy and research development for sport." In 2006 the University of Western Australia presented him with an Excellence in Research Supervision Award, for his supervision of Honours students, which was followed in 2008 with an Excellence in Teaching Award.

In his seminar, Professor Elliott will discuss and reflect upon his many years of research in biomechanics and exercise science at UWA.

18:00 - SCREENING - FREE SCREENING: Feynman Messenger Lecture More Information
As part of our continue tradition free screening, this week the University Physics Society will be screening one of the widely acclaimed recorded lectures by famous physicist Richard Feynmann. Entry is free and drinks and snacks will be available.

For more details email us at [email protected]

 April 2013
Monday 01
9:00 - EVENT - SPICE PD, Regional Visits and Travelling Scientist : The Travelling Scientist accompanies the SPICE team when they visit regional schools. The Travelling Scientist, a young PhD student, talks to students about their journey in science More Information
SPICE Events are designed to expose high school science teachers to exciting new science by increasing interaction between teachers and researchers at UWA. They provide the opportunity for teachers to engage in current research and learn new ideas for the classroom, and usually contain a range of activities including hands-on lab sessions, field trips or presentations showcasing cutting-edge research. We expect the heightened engagement and interaction between teachers and tertiary scientists to have a significant impact upon the enthusiasm of teachers for science.

See website for dates and further details.
Thursday 04
9:00 - VISITING SPEAKER - Unisuper Financial Advice : Unisuper Financial Adviser will be on campus at UWA Website | More Information
Book your financial advice appointment on campus at the University of Western Australia with a Unisuper Financial Advisor.Whichever type of advice you choose, your first appointment with UniSuper Advice is complimentary. If you wish to proceed, a fixed quote will be provided at the conclusion of the meeting.Contact Unisuper to make an Appointment
Friday 05
15:00 - PUBLIC TALK - Engineering and Ethics with Neural Culture : Public talk with SymbioticA resident researcher Riley Zeller-Townson Website | More Information
New media artworks that feature living neural networks, such as “MEArt” and “Silent Barrage,” suggest that humans have ethical obligations to these hybrid neuro-robotic entities. These entities are interesting from an ethics perspective, as interaction between the entity and it's environment is constructed by the artists and scientists who built the piece, but the tissue that performs that interaction is built of the same material that (it is believed) experiences pain and suffering in a live rat. This presentation is part of ongoing research into the types of constructed entities we have obligations towards, as well as the extent of those obligations.

Riley Zeller-Townson is a Biomedical Engineering PhD Student at the Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University in Atlanta, USA, in the lab of Dr. Steve Potter. Riley's research focuses on the role of the axon in neural computation and what artificial intelligence can get out of neuroscience. Riley is also a Neuroethics Scholar at the Emory University Neuroethics Program, where he studies the ethical claims of artwork that includes live neurons.
Tuesday 09
18:00 - SCREENING - FREE SCREENING: Memento (2000) More Information
As part of our continue tradition free screening, this week the University Physics Society will be screening the film Memento, directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Guy Pierce, Carrie-Ann Moss and Joe Pantoliano. What this got to do with physics? Not much but we promise it will be good fun!

Entry is free and drinks and snacks will be available. For more details email us at [email protected]

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