MAY
20

Southern Highlands Branch Meeting 2020-4

Professor Gordon Parker “Burnout — the hottest issue”

Professor Gordon Parker AO
Scientia Professor of Psychiatry
UNSW (Sydney)

Date: Thursday, 20 May, 6.30pm AEST
Venue: RSL Mittagong (face-to-face)
All are welcome. 

Summary:If constant stress has you feeling helpless, disillusioned and completely exhausted, you may be on the road to burnout. In this lecture, Professor Gordon Parker will discuss what you can do to regain your balance and feel hopeful and positive once again.

Burnout is a state of emotional, physical and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. It occurs when you feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained and unable to meet constant demands. As the stress continues, you begin to lose interest and motivation that led you to take on a certain role in the first place.

Burnout reduces productivity and saps your energy, leaving you feeling increasingly helpless, hopeless, cynical and resentful. Listen to this lecture by psychiatrist Professor Gordon Parker to hear all about the history of burnout, its key symptoms, who gets it, its causes and prevalence, what happens in the brain and most importantly…how to correct it.

Professor Gordon Parker AO is Scientia Professor of Psychiatry, UNSW, was Founder of the Black Dog Institute and its initial Executive Director, Head of the School of Psychiatry at UNSW, and Director of the Division of Psychiatry at Prince of Wales Hospital. His positions with the Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Psychiatrists include being Editor of its Journal. Positions with legal organisations include the NSW Guardianship Board and the NSW Administrative Appeals Tribunal. In 2004 he received a Citation Laureate as the Australian Scientist most highly cited in ‘Psychiatry/Psychology’. In 2018 he received the prestigious James Cook Medal from the Royal Society of New South Wales, and was recipient of the 2020Australian Mental Health Prize. His research has focussed on the mood disorders. He has published 23 books and over 1,000 scientific reports. His first of fiction was published in 1966 and his latest novel (“In Two Minds”) in 2017. In the 60’s, he wrote for The Mavis Bramston Show and OZ Magazine, was an ABC Science broadcaster, a book reviewer for the Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian, and in 2004 had a play (“Personality Games”) produced by La Mama in Melbourne. His autobiography “A Piece of My Mind: A Psychiatrist on the Couch” was published in 2012. His co-authored book on Burnout will be published on 1 July 2021.

MAY
26

Hunter Branch Meeting 2021-1

Dr Alan Finkel AO“On readying our region for low emissions technology”

Dr Alan Finkel AO FTSE FAA
Former Chief Scientist of Australia

Date: Wednesday, 26 May 2021, 5.30pm AEST 
Venue: Newcastle Conservatorium of Music (cnr Auckland and Laman Streets, Newcastle) and Zoom live-streaming
Entry: No charge 
Registration: through Eventbrite is required for either attendance in person or attendance online
All are welcome. 

In Conversation with Dr Alan Finkel AO.

This presentation, from the University of Newcastle and the Royal Society of NSW, coincides with the visit by Dr Finkel to the University of Newcastle.  It includes a public address, and an in-depth interview which will allow his audience to understand and explore the vast opportunities available through low emissions or carbon neutral technologies. 

In particular he will share insights into the government and technology directions and how regional industries might respond, particularly in the context of the Hunter in which the University of Newcastle is leading research in clean hydrogen energy, the transition to zero emission mining of aluminum, iron ore and steel, renewable energy storage technology, and bio-sequestration in regional farming practices.

Dr Alan Finkel AO is one of Australia’s most distinguished scientific, engineering, and academic advisers and advocates for innovation in technology. In 2021 he completed his tenure as Australia’s Chief Scientist and has since been appointed Special Adviser to the Commonwealth Government on the research, development, transition, and application of low emissions technology.

He is noted for making the topics of science, engineering, technology, accessible and exciting to young people through his advice and contributions to the development of the nation’s modern STEM curriculum. 

JUN
02

1294th OGM and Open Lecture

Professor Richard Kingsford“Murray-Darling Basin turmoil:
past, present, and future”

Professor Richard Kingsford FRSN

Professor of Environmental Science
Director, Centre for Ecosystem Science, UNSW (Sydney)

Date: Wednesday, 2 June 2021, 6.30pm AEST 
Venue:  Zoom Webinar. Click here for help in getting started with Zoom
Enquiries: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Entry: No charge
All are welcome. 

Summary:  The Murray-Darling Basin is Australia's most developed river system, supporting extensive irrigation industries, pastoralists, traditional owner communities, fishers, tourism and ecosystems. More than a century of river development through the building of dams, development of floodplains, and diversion of water has had devastating impacts on ecosystem services and ecosystems. The Millennium Drought was a catalyst for change. The Australian Government took over control of the Basin with the Water Act 2007, implemented by the Murray-Darling Basin Plan. The Commonwealth Government's external powers, particularly in relation to wetlands of international importance under the Ramsar Convention and migratory shorebirds were the primary driver for this, but States still remained in control of their rivers under the Federal Constitution, through their planning. A principal objective was to restore the health of the Murray-Darling Basin River system.

More than $13 billion dollars later, there are many challenges and questions about what has been achieved and at what cost. The number of inquiries continues to rise. The NSW Government is planning to build three large dams and smaller weirs on the rivers. Unfortunately, the ecological state of the Murray-Darling Basin continues to decline, albeit potentially at a slower rate than would have occurred otherwise. In this talk, I will present my research on wetlands and waterbirds within the context of these major changes, past and present, as well as identify some of the major challenges for the future.

Brief biography: Professor Richard Kingsford is a river ecologist and conservation biologist who has worked extensively across the wetlands and rivers of the Murray-Darling Basin. He also worked with many different communities and governments across this region. His research has influenced the policy and management of rivers in Australia, including through his involvement on state and federal advisory committees. He also leads a reintroduction or rewilding project, Wild Deserts, in Sturt National Park (NSW). He is the Director for the Centre for Ecosystem Science UNSW, Sydney. He became a Fellow of the Royal Society of NSW in 2018.

JUL
07

1295th OGM and Open Lecture

Dr Erik Aslaksen“Society as an information processing system, and the influence of the media”

Dr Erik Aslaksen FRSN

Physicist, Engineer, and Author

Date: Wednesday, 7 July 2021, 6.30pm AEST 
Venue: To be advised
Enquiries: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Entry: No charge
All are welcome. 

 Summary: We are concerned about our environment, and rightfully so: the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, and threats to this environment from global warming, loss of biological diversity, and many other concerns. These are all concerns about our physical environment, much as an ice bear is concerned about the melting of the ice, or as the koala is concerned about the reduction of its habitat due to deforestation. We are also concerned about many aspects of our society, such as overpopulation, economic growth, inequality, poverty, healthcare, and pandemics; again, concerns about physical features.

In this talk Dr Erik Aslaksen will present a complementary view of our society — one peculiar to our species; a view of society as an information-processing system in which the physical aspects of society are both the results and the enablers of our mental processes. The system consists of individuals as processors and of the interactions between them in the form of information exchange, and as the processing capability and capacity of the individuals have not changed significantly over the last 10,000 years or so, the evolution of our society is, in this view, the evolution of this information exchange. This is an evolution characterised by the media involved and of the technology enabling them,  from the earliest cave art to the Internet. Correspondingly, our concerns for society change from the above concerns about physical features to concerns about the information exchange and the associated information technology — in particular, about the ability to use the technology to control the information flow. Two examples of this concern will be discussed; one being the increasing concentration of wealth in the West, and with it the ownership and control of the media by a small group of people; the other arising out of the fact that the world society has arrived at a unique point in its evolution, but with a great reluctance to talk about it.

Erik W. Aslaksen is an engineer and physicist, with over fifty years industrial experience, gained in the USA, Switzerland and Australia, and covering fields as diverse as microwave components, power electronics, quantum electronics, and telecommunications, and ranging from basic research to corporate management. He obtained a MSc (EE) from the Swiss Institute of Technology in 1962, and a PhD in theoretical physics from Lehigh University in 1968. Erik was a Director of Ewbank Preece Sinclair Knight from 1988 until 1993, a Principal of Sinclair Knight Merz from 1993 until 2003, and an Adjunct Professor at the UTS until 1995.

In recent years his main interest has been in the area of systems engineering, engineering management, philosophical aspects of engineering, and the interaction between technology and society, as well as the evolution of society. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of NSW and of the International Council on Systems Engineering, a Charter Member of Omega Alpha, and is the author of eight books (one with W.R. Belcher), four book chapters, and more than eighty papers.

His most recent publications are:

  • The Social Bond: How the interaction between individuals drives the evolution of society, Springer Nature, 2018
  • The Stability of Society, Springer Nature, 2020
  • Measures of Social Evolution, Springer Nature, 2021.

 

 

JUL
22

[email protected]: July 2021

Governor of NSW Crest-Silver and Gold-2020[email protected]

Presented by

Her Excellency the Honourable
Margaret Beazley AC QC, Governor of NSW

Greta Bradman
“Music as a Superfood: How music can help us live longer, sleep better, calm down, find flow, and feel happier

Greta J. Bradman
Writer, broadcaster and psychologist

Date: Thursday, 22 July 2021, 6.30pm AEST
Venue: Zoom webinar
Entry: No charge
Enquiries: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Society Members and Fellows, and members of the public are welcome

About the talk: Greta Bradman will discuss how music can help us live longer, sleep better, calm down, find flow, and feel happier. The talk will include explorations of the evidence base, plus some personal anecdotes.

About the speaker: Greta Bradman consults with public and private organisations across technology and creative industries on culture, works in private practice as a psychologist, presents Weekend Brunch and is the creator of “Music for Wellbeing” offerings on ABC Classic. She hosts concerts and conversations, and provides workshops around wellbeing, human values, and decision-making. She is the founder of pre-launch, values-based tech startup, Eiris Inc. She still sings from time-to-time. help you grow beyond the expectations you and others have previously put on you, into your own personal version of a fulfilling, brilliant life well-lived.

Formerly an artist for Universal Music (Decca Classics), she had four No.1 solo albums and has featured on others. She has sung with opera companies, symphony orchestras and ensembles around Australia and the Asia Pacific, through Europe, the UK, and US. She has produced her own tours, and has toured alongside colleagues from around the world.

Alongside fundraising strategy and implementation, Greta advises and actively participated in the key development of evidence-based initiatives and programs that have demonstratively supported wellbeing-related outcomes.

Greta is a Trustee of Arts Centre Melbourne and holds advisory board positions with: Arts Wellbeing Collective; Arts Centre Melbourne Foundation; The Alfred Foundation; and, the Australian Mental Health Prize. Greta is a member of the Federal Government’s Creative Industry Taskforce. She is currently completing her Senior Executive MBA at Melbourne Business School.

About [email protected]: In late 2019, Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AC QC, Governor of New South Wales and Patron of the Royal Society of NSW, invited representatives of the Society to discuss how the Governor might open Government House to a series of public events based on important and/or influential ideas. Her Excellency’s proposal was that the Royal Society of NSW and other organisations might devise a series of lectures, to be held at Government House, and known as [email protected] on topics of our choice for an invited audience of our Members and Fellows, together with others to be invited by Her Excellency. This is the second in the [email protected] series, the first being held in May 2020.

NOV
04

RSNSW and Learned Academies Forum 2021

Digital age image“Power and Peril
of the Digital Age”


Date: Thursday, 4 November 2021
Venue: In person at Government House, Sydney and live streaming.

The Society is delighted that the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences will join the other four Learned Academies — Humanities, Science, Social Sciences, and Technology and Engineering — to stage the RSNSW and Learned Academies Forum this year.

Mark your calendars with the date, Thursday 4th November 2021.

Our Patron, Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AC QC, Governor of New South Wales, will be our host at Government House in Sydney. In addition to the opportunity to attend in person, the Forum will be made available to a wider audience in NSW and beyond via live streaming.

In choosing “Power and Peril of the Digital Age” as the theme, our goal is to consider digitisation and the use of data framed around the future life of a child born on the day of the Forum, 4 November 2021. This child will be born into a world of increasingly complex digital systems that hold great value and vulnerability.

Starting with a technological framing, the Forum will explore several major aspects that will impact the journey of that child as we approach 2030 and beyond. We will explore aspects of technology, health, defence and security in a digital age, the changing nature of industry as the world and society evolves, and Australia’s future as a successful and safe democracy in the digital world.

JAN
01

Calendar of Meetings 2021

RSNSW SealThis page lists the Calandar of Meetings for the Royal Society of NSW in 2021.

Please check this page regularly since the program is under ongoing development.

Last update: 26 February 2021


Follow the links below for meetings held by the Society in Sydney, in Newcastle by the Hunter Branch, and in Mittagong by the Southern Highlands Branch.

 

Sydney Meetings 2021

Please note that the program in the table below lists events that are scheduled as monthly Ordinary General Meetings and the Annual Forum of the Royal Society and Four Academies. In addition to these events, there are three named lectures, associated with the Society’s 2020 Awards, that remain to be scheduled:

  • Clarke Lecture — Distinguished Professor Michelle Leishman (Macquarie University)
  • Liversidge Lecture — Professor Richard Payne FRSN (University of Sydney)
  • Poggendorf Lecture — Professor Angela Moles FRSN (UNSW Sydney)

together with another lecture in the [email protected] series, and the Society’s contributions to Science Week 2021 in the latter half of the year.

DateEvent

Wednesday,
3 February 

6.30pm AEDT

1290th Ordinary General Meeting and Open Lecture:
2020 Jak Kelly Award and RSNSW Scholarship Winner Presentations

Venue: Zoom Webinar

Controlling how electrons move in silicon at the atomic scale
Mr Matthew Donnelly — Jak Kelly Award Winner
PhD Student, Centre for Quantum Computation and Communication Technology, UNSW (Sydney)

3D Printing for Microfluidics (TBC)
Mr Sajad Razavi Bazaz — RSNSW Scholarship Winner
PhD Student, School of Biomedical Engineering, University of Technology Sydney

Molecular mechanisms of inflammasome activation by enterotoxins of the foodborne pathogen Bacillus cereus
Mr Daniel Fox — RSNSW Scholarship Winner
PhD Student, John Curtin School of Medical Research, Australian National University

Improving the treatment of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder in refugees: The important role of emotion regulation
Ms Phillipa Specker — RSNSW Scholarship Winner
PhD Student, School of Psychology, UNSW (Sydney)

Wednesday,
3 March 

6.30pm AEDT

1291st Ordinary General Meeting and Open Lecture

Venue: Zoom Webinar

What are the best options for growing Australia’s mental health through the COVID-19 recovery?
Professor Ian Hickie AM FRSN FASSA FAHMS
Co-Director (Health and Policy), Brain and Mind Centre, University of Sydney

Wednesday,
7 April

6.00pm AEST

154th Annual General Meeting (6.00pm)
1292nd Ordinary General Meeting and Open Lecture (immediately following)

Venue: Zoom Webinar

Antarctica, this ain’t no mirage: The value of art in disseminating scientific information
Lea Kannar-Lichtenberger
Artist, exploring connections between science and art practice

Thursday,
15 April

6.00pm AEST

[email protected]: April 2021

Venue: Zoom Webinar

Australia and the Dickens Boys
Thomas Keneally AO DistFRSN

Wednesday,
5 May

6.30pm AEST

1293rd Ordinary General Meeting and Open Lecture

Venue: Zoom Webinar (TBC)

Big, bad fires in NSW
Emerita Professor Mary O’Kane AC FRSN FTSE HonFIEAust
Chair, Independent Planning Commission of NSW and former Chief Scientist and Engineer of NSW

Wednesday,
2 June

6.30pm AEST

1294th Ordinary General Meeting and Open Lecture

Venue: Zoom Webinar (TBC)

Murray-Darling Basin turmoil: past, present and future
Professor Richard Kingsford FRSN
Director, Centre for Ecosystem Science, School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, UNSW (Sydney)

Wednesday,
7 July

6.30pm AEST

1295th Ordinary General Meeting and Open Lecture

Venue: To be advised

Society as an information-processing system, and the influence of the media
Dr Erik Aslaksen FRSN
Director, Systems Engineer, and Author

Thursday,
22 July

6.30pm AEST

[email protected]: July 2021

Venue: Zoom Webinar

Music as a Superfood: How music can help us live longer, sleep better, calm down, find flow, and feel happier
Greta J, Bradman
Writer, broadcaster and psychologist

Wednesday
4 August 

6.30pm AEST

1296th Ordinary General Meeeting and Open Lecture

Venue: To be advised

An intimate history of evolution: From genesis to genetic with a scientific dynasty
Professor Alison Bashford FRSN FAHA FBA FRHistS
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, UNSW (Sydney)

Wednesday,
1 September

6.30pm AEST

1297th Ordinary General Meeeting and Open Lecture

Venue: To be advised

Taking humour and laughter seriously: Exploring the multi-disciplinary field of humour studies 
Dr Jessica Milner Davis FRSN
Honorary Associate, School of Literature, Art and Media, University of Sydney

Wednesday,
6 October

6.30pm AEDT

1298th Ordinary General Meeeting and Open Lecture

Venue: To be advised

Topic: To be advised 
Ms Sarah Court (1) and Scientia Professor Toby Walsh (2)
(1) Commissioner, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission
(2) School of Computer Science and Engineering, UNSW (Sydney)

Date Thursday, 4
November

9.00am - 4.30pm AEDT

Royal Society of NSW and Learned Academies Annual Forum

Venue: Government House, Sydney, Live Streaming and subsequent availability on YouTube

Topic: Power and Peril of the Digital Age

Wednesday
10 November

6.30pm AEDT

1299th Ordinary General Meeting and Open Lecture

Venue: To be advised

Topic: To be announced
Speaker: To be announced

Wednesday
1 December

6.30pm AEDT

1300th Ordinary General Meeting and Open Lecture

Venue: Zoom Webinar

Managing psychological distress in times of stress: handling the stress of COVID-19 and all that
Scientia Professor Richard Bryant AC FASSA FAA FAHMS — James Cook Medal Winner 2020
School of Psychology, UNSW (Sydney)

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Hunter Branch Meetings

The Hunter Branch Event Program for 2021 is still under development, with the table below being updated on a regular basis.

Tuesday,
26 May

Time: 5.30pm

Hunter Branch Meeting 2021-1 and Lecture
Jointly with the University of Newcastle as part of the Looking Ahead — In Conversation Series

Venue: University of Newcastle and Live Streaming

Topic: On readying our region for low emissions technology
Dr Alan Finkel AO FAA FTSE
Former Chief Scientist of Australia 

Wednesday
30 June

Time: TBA

Hunter Branch Meeting 2021-2 and Lecture

Venue: To be advised

Topic: To be advised
Professor Jason Sharples
Director, Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC
UNSW Canberra

Wednesday
25 August

Time: TBA

Hunter Branch Meeting 2021-3 and Lecture

Venue: to be advised

Royal Commission for Ageing and the care and welfare of the elderly
Professor Kathy Eagar
Director, Australian Health Services Research Institute
University of Wollongong

Wednesday
29 September

Time: TBA

Hunter Branch Meeting 2021-4 and Lecture

Venue: To be advised

Topic: To be advised
Mr Nathan Towney
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Strategy and Leadership)
University of Newcastle

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Southern Highlands Branch Meetings

The Southern Highlands Branch Event Program for 2021 is still under development, with the table below being updated on a regular basis.

Thursday,
18 February

Time: 6.30pm

Southern Highlands Branch Lecture 2021-1

Venue: RSL Mittagong, Carrington Room

Topic: The five islands off Port Kembla — an historical and ecological study
Dr Kevin Mills
Botanist and Eciologist 

Thursday,
18 March

Time: 6.30pm

Southern Highlands Branch Lecture 2021-2

Venue: RSL Mittagong, Carrington Room

Topic: The general development of the Sydney Basin Coast and its recent history since the last ice age
Dr Howard Brady

Thursday,
15 April

Time: 6.30pm

Southern Highlands Branch Lecture 2021-3

Venue: RSL Mittagong, Nattai/Joadja Room

Topic: Particle radiation therapy and human space exploration: commonality in challenges and solutions
Professor Anatoly Rosenfeld
University of Wollongong 

Thursday,
20 May

Time: 6.30pm

Southern Highlands Branch Lecture 2021-4

Venue: RSL  Mittagong

Topic: Burnout  — the hottest issue
Professor Gordon Parker AO
Scientia Professor of Psychiatry, UNSW Sydney

Thursday,
17 June

Time: 6.30pm

Southern Highlands Branch Lecture 2021-5

Venue: To be advised

Topic: Nuclear Fusion — exact topic t.b.a.
Max la Galle
Materials science student, UNSW (Sydney) 

Thursday,
15 June

Time: 6.30pm

Southern Highlands Branch Lecture 2021-6

Venue: to be advised

Topic: Neutron scattering and the WOMBAT project
Dr Helen Maynard-Casely
Instrument Scientsit, ANSTO 

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