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Today's date is Friday, November 27, 2020
Science for the Community
 June 2013
Friday 21
9:00 - SYMPOSIUM - Agency in Movement Symposium : Free one day Symposium presented by SymbioticA Website | More Information
The Agency in Movement symposium employs a variety of disciplines to explore the complex relations between movement and vitality. Motion is observed by attaching a frame of reference to a “body” and measuring its change in position relative to another reference frame. Therefore, movement is relative, means ever changing and is perceived as visceral and “alive”. The Symposium will include invited speakers from diverse disciplines (art, performance, biology, biophysics, biomechanics, and philosophy) who will explore and interrogate the conceptual and technical relations between life (biological or artificial), movement and perceptions of "vitality”, with the hope that some interesting meeting points and/or negations will emerge.

The symposium stems from an Australian Research Council project exploring the use of skeletal muscle tissue which is grown, stimulated and activated in a techno-scientific surrogate “body”. This moving twitching (semi) living material evokes, makes unease, and asks, in sensorial and theoretical means about issues of aliveness and agency. The project is concerned with onto-ethico-epistemological (Barad 2010) questions about life and the affect created through the phenomenon of movement.

We will be probing into the (sometimes) uneasy and undefined areas of shifting perceptions of life, heralded by developments in the life sciences and applied technologies, coupled with the introduction of engineering principles into life sciences. In the light of ‘new materialism’, ‘agential realism’ and when life is becoming a raw material to be engineered, we will examine the position and role of movement as agency.

Speakers include: Monika Bakke, a philosopher who interrogates cross species and non-human communication at Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan, Poland.; Andrew Pelling leads the Laboratory for Biophysical Manipulation at the University of Ottawa, which experiment with in vitro muscle cells and with artists. Elizabeth Stephens, a science historian from the Centre for the History of European Discourses. Elizabeth will analyse some historical discourses and understandings in relation to vitalism. Tony Bakker and Gavin Pinniger, Muscle Physiology, the University of Western Australia. Stuart Hodgetts, a biologist from UWA will contribute to the understanding of the neuromuscular interface. Chris Salter, the Director of the Hexagram Concordia Centre for Research, whose artistic research explore the performative, focusing on dynamic and temporal processes over static objects and representations. Jennifer Johung, will contribute her perspective on performance and agency in art (Art History, the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee). Oron Catts, SymbioticA’s Director, will discuss the demonstrable in science and the arts. Gabrielle Decamous, will look at semi-living material as a device in undermining the polarized understanding of the world (Kyushu University, Japan). Miranda Grounds of UWA provide her extensive knowledge in the cell biology aspects of skeletal muscles. Ionat Zurr will explore an artistically grown and induced semi living movement which attempt to reintroduce a sense of agency. Stelarc, an Australia artist and Joanna Zylinska, Goldsmith University UK, will be reflecting on these issues in the closing panel.
Tuesday 25
9:00 - EVENT - The Australian Brain Bee : WA State Finals 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.

 July 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 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.
Friday 05
9:00 - EVENT - Indigenous Science Camp : The camp provides participants with a hands-on experience of science, engineering, medicine and technology. Website | More Information
The residential camp is held annually in July for students from Years 9 to 11. It is held in Perth and includes visits to The University of Western Australia and other locations of scientific interest around the city.

The camp provides participants with a hands-on experience of science, engineering, medicine and technology. There is an emphasis on fields relevant to Indigenous communities in Western Australia, including sustainability, health, ecology, conservation, infrastructure, water, energy and mineral resources.

School students attending the camp will be engaged through the interweaving of cultural themes with participation from Indigenous scientists, engineers and health professionals demonstrating the relevance and importance of science and technology to Indigenous people. A careers forum and information session on selecting school subjects is held as part of the camp to encourage students to aspire towards university entrance. Current Indigenous Students will also assist as supervisors, acting as positive role models for students.

This camp is supported by Woodside and the Australian Government, Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education through the Aspire UWA Indigenous Program.
Friday 12
15:00 - PUBLIC TALK - Artist's Talk: The Mechanism of Life (after Stephane Leduc) : Public talk with Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr Website | More Information
At the very same time that Bergson developed his concept of Élan Vital in his book Creative Evolution, others attempted to do away with the metaphysical notion of vital force. One significant endeavour was taken by Stephane Leduc, who set out to prove that life is merely a chemical process.

In his 1911 book The Mechanism of Life, Leduc proposed a series of chemical experiments showing the emergence of life-like phenomena of different degrees of complexity. Using seductive imagery of mainly diffusion and osmosis Leduc attempted to prove the mechanistic aspects of life and challenge Vitalism.

With the recent advent of Synthetic Biology where the engineering mindset towards biology is set to dominate approaches to life, we see a rehashing of similar stories from a hundred years ago. One such story is the creation of the basic unit of life, the cell, out of non-living materials. The so called protocells are becoming a major field of study complete with the hyperbole rhetoric about their potential applications.

This piece will reappropriate one of the simplest protocell protocols offered by Leduc, working with the diffusion of two concentrations of solutions that create transitory cell-like droplets. The droplets resemble cells with membrane and nuclei, they last for a few moments before succumbing to entropy and dissolving into a murky liquid, “much like life.”

This protocol is automated using another hyped technology: three-dimensional printing. There is much discussion about 3D printing technology as the next industrial revolution - something that parallels the assembly line of Fordism at the time Leduc was working on the Mechanism of Life. The promise of 3D printing technology is in its core based on information transfer as the business model; the focus is on the instructions/data as the currency while the materiality is merely an optional manifestation. This is problematic as at the very same time, the 3D printing industry suggests the ability to print actual life, or at least parts of the living. This very seductive scenario of printing life from scratch is played off in this work against the unstable, uncontrollable and transient nature of the protocell droplets as a material. What would capture the public imaginary? The precise movement of the machine? The perfect arrangement of the droplets? Or the off-putting murky outcome of entropy?

To a large extent this piece deals with issues of cultural amnesia and reimagining; pointing attention to the use of certain visuals and expressions to persuade, hype and then disappoint. In a time when the idea of creating synthetic life is in the forefront, it is important to culturally probe current and past approaches to the idea of the Mechanism of Life. The printed “protocells” are unstable and temporary and take on forms that appear organic and then disappear. More than a proof on the mechanism of life, they are a suggestion for a humble approach to the question of what life is and how far are we willing to make life into a raw material for our own ends.

Oron Catts is Director of SymbioticA, The Centre of Excellence in Biological Arts School of Anatomy Physiology and Human Biology, The University of Western Australia. Catts is an artist, researcher and a curator at the forefront of the emerging field of biological-arts, whose work addresses shifting perceptions of life. Dr. Ionat Zurr is an artist, researcher and the Academic coordinator at SymbioticA. Catts together with Zurr formed the internationally renowned Tissue Culture and Art Project (TC&A) in 1996.

The work The Mechanism of Life (after Stephane Leduc) was collaboratively created with Corrie Van Sice. Her work applies concepts of bio-mimesis to the production of fabrication methodologies, which identify the inherent potential for matter to become functional, and human curiosity’s creative influence on natural systems. Van Sice earned her Masters at New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, the self-proclaimed “center for the recently possible,” and worked as Materials and Processes Engineer at the popular 3d printing company, MakerBot Industries. She has partnered with synthetic biologists at Brooklyn’s citizen science lab Genspace, and began work with Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr via the Finnish Bioart Society at the Kilpisjärvi Biological Station in the fall 2011.
Friday 26
14:00 - ORATION - Three Minute Thesis Competition Final : An 80,000 word thesis would take 9 hours to present - their time 3 minutes! Website | More Information
The task for the 10 finalists is to give an engaging talk on their PhD topic and it's significance in language that everyone can understand - in just 3 minutes. The audience will vote for its People's Choice.

15:00 - PUBLIC TALK - HumanThrush entanglements: Homo sapiens as a multi-species ecology : Public talk with Tarsh Bates Website | More Information
Human bodies are a mammal/fungal/bacterial/insect/viral ecology which we rarely acknowledge: a normal human body is said to be composed of over 1 trillion cells, of which only about 10% are animal. This artistic research project explores what it means to be human when we recognise our bodies as a multi-species ecology. I focus on the intimate and fraught contact zones of biology, aesthetics, culture and care between Homo sapiens and Candida albicans, the single celled opportunistic fungal pathogen commonly known as thrush. Understanding and reinterpreting physical and sensual interactions is essential to explore embodied interspecies encounters and the material effects of human/non-human boundary formation. This discussion positions humans and thrush as co-evolved companion species involved in a biopolitical entanglement that is gendered, erotic and often ruthless.

Tarsh Bates completed a Master of Science (Biological Arts) in 2012. She has worked variously as a pizza delivery driver, a fruit and vegetable stacker, a toilet paper packer, a researcher in compost science and waste management, a honeybee ejaculator, an art gallery invigilator, a bookkeeper, a car detailer, and a life drawing model. Tarsh is currently a candidate for a PhD (Biological Arts) at SymbioticA UWA where her current research is concerned with gentleness, the aesthetics of interspecies relationships and the human as a multispecies ecology. She is particularly enamoured with Candida albicans.

 August 2013
Thursday 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.

9:50 - FREE LECTURE - De Laeter Youth Lecture : The De Laeter Youth Lecture is organized annually by the WA Branch of the Australian Institute of Physics. More Information
The De Laeter Youth Lecture is organized annually by the WA Branch of the Australian Institute of Physics. It is named in honour of the late Emeritus Professor John De Laeter. Not only was Professor De Laeter one of Western Australia's most noted scientists, but he also had an enormous impact on education is Western Australia. A minor planet was named after Professor De Laeter in recognition of his research in astrophysics and, in 1992, he was awarded the Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for his contributions to science, education and industry. He received a Eureka Prize in 2005, and a Clunies Ross Science and Technology Award in 2006.
Thursday 08
9:00 - EVENT - Great Southern, Great Science Conference - last call for registrations Website | More Information
The Great Southern Science Council, the Western Australian Chief Scientist, the WA Museum (Albany), and the Centre of Excellence in Natural Resource Management are hosting a conference in Albany to showcase the excellent science taking place in the Great Southern region.

'Great Southern, Great Science' will include presentations on nationally significant work that impacts on the Great Southern, and local research and development by scientists and professionals in the Great Southern.

The conference will be held Thursday 8 August at the Albany Entertainment Centre from 9am to 3.30pm.

Program available online https://www.cenrm.uwa.edu.au/community/conference

Buy tickets online https://payments.weboffice.uwa.edu.au/cenrm/gsgss_registration
Saturday 10
9:00 - EVENT - National Science Week: 10 - 18 August : In 2013 the Science Faculty will host a number of public and schools events during National Science Week. Events include: * Science Café * School's lectures and other community events More Information
National Science Week is an annual celebration of science in Australia, an opportunity to join together to enjoy and explore the wonders and benefits of science. The Faculty of Science at The University of Western Australia will be hosting a number of special events for schools and for the community.
Sunday 11
9:00 - EVENT - Chanelle Carter Memorial Fund More Information
The Chanelle Carter Memorial Fund, sponsored by Alcoa Australia, was established at The University of Western Australia in 2011. Chanelle was a UWA chemistry graduate who worked at Alcoa Australia. Her life was tragically cut short in 2010. Alcoa Australia established the Chanelle Carter Memorial Fund to honour her zest, energy and passion. Chanelle’s parents, Yve and Mike Carter in particular were very keen that the fund was used to support young women in science. They wanted their daughter’s memorial to potentially make a difference. The Chanelle Carter Memorial Fund therefore offers six Year 10 girls from South West schools the opportunity to visit and participate in a range of science-focused activities at The University of Western Australia.

In 2011, the inaugural year of the fund, the project was coordinated by Associate Professor Jan Dook and Charmaine White from the SPICE project and Dr Joanne Castelli from the LPS faculty office. Three Year 10 girls from Newton Moore SHS and three from Pinjarra SHS, together with accompanying teachers were invited to be guests of the Faculty of Life and Physical Sciences at The University of Western Australia, from Sunday 14 August to Thursday 18 August. These dates encompassed the UWA Expo and National Science Week. Teachers were able to attend SPICE PD sessions during the visit.

In 2013, visits to UWA will be from 11 to 15 August. Further details will be available shortly.

10:00 - OPEN DAY - 2013 Open Day : Join us for our Centenary Open Day and experience all that UWA has to offer Website | More Information
Come and find out about our undergraduate and postgraduate courses, career options, scholarship opportunities, our valuable research, community programs and facilities.

There's also residential college tours, hands-on activities, live music, entertainment, and plenty of fun activities for the whole family as we celebrate our 100th birthday.
Monday 12
17:00 - PUBLIC LECTURE - Lifting Africans out of poverty : an overview of the strategy and activities of the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) Website | More Information
The International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) sets clear targets: by 2020 its research efforts will have contributed to lifting 11 million Africans out of poverty and to restoring 7.5 million hectares of land into sustainable use. IITA's Deputy Director General for Research, Prof Ylva Hilbur, will provide an overiew of: the institute's scientific focus, its priority areas for future investment, its role in the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), its initiatives to build public/private partnerships and its activities to stimulate youth employment and entrepreneurship in the agricultural sector.
Thursday 22
18:00 - PUBLIC LECTURE - From Continental to Regional: transforming the scales of climate projection : The 2013 Joseph Gentilli Memorial Lecture Website | More Information
A lecture by Professor Andrew J. Pitman, Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science, University of New South Wales.

The report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, in 2007, stated that there is “considerable confidence that climate models provide credible quantitative estimates of future climate change, particularly at continental scales and above.” Climate models really are extremely useful tools for informing policy makes of how large and how fast climate is likely to change in the next 50-100 years at continental scales and above. However, most decision making to address vulnerability to climate change requires much more detailed information than provided at the continental scale and requires temporal information around extremes that needs daily, and sometimes hourly information.

This talk will explain how researchers in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate System Science are working to resolve the scale challenge that confronts us. Professor Pitman will highlight research that is now resolving ocean eddies, convection processes, and land surface processes at previously unprecedented spatial and temporal scales. He will also highlight where the limits remain in providing fine-scale climate projections – limits that are link science challenges with high performance computing, high-volume data and a worrying lack of quantitative and technologically capable graduate students.

Cost: Free, but registration required. Visit https://www.ias.uwa.edu.au/lectures/pitman

 September 2013
Sunday 01
9:00 - CLOSING DATE FOR 2014 - The UWA Science Experience : Closing date for current Year 9 and 10 students applications for January 2014 Website | More Information
Applications CLOSE 30th November for the Science Experience 2014. Current year 9 and 10 students apply on-line at the Science Experience website. Late applications will be accepted if a place is available. To check whether a program is fully booked at any time go to www.scienceexperience.com.au/when-where/wa

The Science Experience is a three day program of events for students about to enter Year 10 and Year 11. The program is held in January 2014 and is designed to excite students about science and technology and introduce the students to the variety of career options in science and engineering, with the aim that more will choose to study and pursue a career in science.

13:00 - 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
Thursday 05
12:00 - TALK - Election Information Talk : Brief electoral summaries near the Oak Lawn. More Information
Two voicings on climate policy and science followed by a Q&A.
Sunday 15
15:30 - CONCERT - Strings Attached Concert : Violin - Viola - Cello! Website | More Information
An all strings extravaganza following the instruments from the early days of Bach and Vivaldi to the recent times of Hindemith and the gypsy music of Ravel.

The concert will feature UWAs finest young string players including Alexandra Isted, Elizabeth Moss, Ellie Walker and Verity Brockmann as they perform these cherished works in anticipation of their graduation year recitals.

Admission is free, bookings required due to limited space.
Wednesday 18
18:00 - SCREENING - UPS Screening: Carl Sagan's Cosmos : Our second FREE documentary screening of the semester More Information
In our third screening for the semester, the University Physics Society showcases the famous documentary Cosmos by Carl Sagan.

The event is free as always and open to all. Cheap drinks and snacks can be bought at the door.

For more information about what UPS Has to offer please contact Sahan on [email protected]

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