To stretch his legs and gulp a few lungsful of fresh air during Hong Kong’s lockdown-lite, Edwin Lau Che-feng went walking in parks and along Hong Kong’s greener streets. Like other Hong Kongers, he mostly abided by social distancing restrictions during the coronavirus crisis. He stayed home, avoided shopping centres and steered clear of crowds. But …read more
Dr Xiaoling Liu, the newly appointed chancellor of the Queensland University of Technology, is well-placed to advise on the coronavirus crisis engulfing Australian universities. Born Chinese, she worked as a metallurgist and executive for Rio Tinto for many years before retiring from her executive position and later joining company boards.
A professor of chemistry at the age of 32, Brigid Heywood knows how hard it can be to forge a career in the male-dominated world of science. Even so, the forthright new vice-chancellor of the University of New England doesn’t think quotas for women academics are the answer.
It can be hard to get into the University of Hong Kong these days. Physically hard. Two of the entrances from the local subway station were shuttered last week – due to “vandalism”, according to a station notice. Most visitors travelled up an escalator, then up in a lift and along a passageway to the …read more
Fears of eroding press freedom have gripped Australian media, most recently hammered home by a respected senior journalist warning of an “unacceptable step down the road to authoritarianism”. Industry luminary Kerry O’Brien said in his speech at the prestigious Walkley awards event that Australia’s government, led by prime minister Scott Morrison, had resisted appeals for freedom …read more
The federal government has backtracked and funded four of the 11 Australian Research Council grant applications that were secretly vetoed by Simon Birmingham as education minister in 2017 and last year.
Writers once travelled through Asia in a leisurely fashion, steamers gently rolling between Bangkok and Batavia, rickshaws wheeling through the streets of Singapore, pleasure boats pulling into Penang. European wanderers, adventurers and authors drank gin slings while waiting for sumptuous dinners; colonial matrons sipped tea on hotel balconies; and the business of empire rumbled on.
Professor Felicity Baker has seen music carve through the thick fog of an elderly person’s dementia and bring them back to reality, to a world where they can again recognise their children and, in the best cases, even communicate with them.
Professor Adam Slipinski is passionate about beetles. Now immersed in the massive task of identifying and classifying thousands of Australian species for the definitive CSIRO catalogue on these insects, he says a proper understanding of beetles is crucial. Although they can be serious pests, he says, beetles also provide essential environmental services – they are pollinators, …read more
When she was a kid in the Mallee in Victoria, Dr Julie Arblaster spent a lot of time outside, swimming in the Murray and roaming in the bush. Weather has always been an important part of her life, and these days it has become central to her profession.