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A showcase of innovation and impact

The 2021 Research Rumble was another successful one, with 20 events held all over Perth and online during April.

Industry, researchers, staff, students and the Perth community were able to get a glimpse of Curtin research in the areas of health, big data, virtual reality and everything in between.

Hands holding smartphones

Can democracy and good government thrive in a digital media age?

Recent US election have demonstrated how politics and the media have become rife with disinformation and alternative facts. This event discussed what role digital journalism and social media play in today’s political sphere, both at home and abroad can journalism play a role in keeping politicians accountable.

Speakers:Hon. Colin Barnett, Professor John Phillimore, Dr Kathryn Shine and Glynn Greensmith

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Impact beyond the night sky

Impact beyond the night sky: a VR experience

This VR immersive movie explores impacts and collisions between bodies in the solar system, shedding light on the origins of our cosmic backyard. The video is inspired by the work of Dr Katarina Miljkovic, a planetary scientist who specialises in planetary geoscience and space exploration at the Curtin University’s Space Science and Technology Centre.

Speakers: Dr Kath Dooley and Dr Katarina Miljkovic

The Future of VR series - VR in Education

Imagine yourself being immersed in a molecular world, dragging and rotating a chemical in an enzyme to achieve a desired reaction? Virtual reality is not just visual illusions, it offers a unique, exciting and interactive learning opportunity for participants.

Associate Professor Mihye Won discussed the application of immersive VR to improve students’ learning outcomes, increase their motivations to learn, and create constructive learning outcomes.

Speaker: Associate Professor Mihye Won

Promises and pitfalls of the influencer industry

Promises and pitfalls of the influencer industry

Many young people are now vocationally pursuing celebrity on the internet as commercial, cross-platform, and highly relatable Influencers. Influencers today draw in millions of dollars, work with reputable companies, establish their own brands, and influence the development of opinions and decision-making in society. But alongside these promises and potentials are also some pitfalls of the Influencer industry.

Our researchers discussed the socio-cultural, marketing, and legal aspects of the Influencer industry in the Asia Pacific region, in a lunch time moderated dialogue.

Speakers: Associate Professor Crystal Abidin, Dr Mingming Cheng and Dr Cheryl Foong

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Research in the Curtin Medical School

Research in the Curtin Medical School

This event explored the established and emerging research at the Curtin Medical School.

Speakers: Professor Sandra Eades, Professor Shirley Jansen, Professor Krish Ragunath and Professor Fraser Brims

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Old couple on a bicycle

Changing the age conversation: it’s time to rethink getting old

Globally, the population aged 65 and over is growing faster than any other age group. As a society, we need to shift from our traditional approaches and attitudes towards ‘ageing’ and pivot towards a focus on ‘longevity’.

Curtin researchers from the areas of health, economics, marketing and culture discussed issues surrounding ageism, the shifting attitudes towards ageing and the need for a new, inclusive aged care model that enables our populations to live better for longer.

Speakers: Professor Katie Ellis, Dr Graham Ferguson, Professor Anne-Marie Hill and Dr Amity James

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Dried flowers and an old letter

The botanist history forgot

It is not widely appreciated that many colonial natural history collections are held in European museums and herbaria.

German botanist Dr Johann August Ludwig Preiss, who roamed Australia’s South West from 1838–1842, is not well-known today, but his collections of local flora and fauna were pivotal in introducing this globally significant biodiverse region to Europe in the 19th century.

In this presentation, Professor Anna Haebich shared her journey of research, here and in Germany, into the evolving story of Dr Preiss’s life and his collections.

Speaker: Professor Anna Haebich

Visitors in the HIVE

The Future of VR series - VR in Maritime Archaeology

Shipwrecks provide a fascinating insight into the past. New VR and 3D image processing technologies are offering innovative ways of interpreting, communicating and visualising the stories of these rich historical sites.

This presentation provided an insight into the technologies and techniques used in these projects and provided attendees with a big-screen VR experience on the Curtin HIVE’s Cylinder display.

Speakers:Mr Jeremy Green and Dr Andrew Woods

Man using VR headset and controls

The Future of VR series - VR in Health Sciences

Virtual reality is emerging as a viable rehabilitation tool for people with incomplete spinal cord injury. Interactive virtual activities and games provide a safe environment for daily practice of desired movements. Gamification and setting a ‘just right’ challenge create motivation in this adjunct to traditional rehabilitation therapies. Associate Professor Marina Ciccarelli and Dr Susan Morris discussed the impact of virtual reality on rehabilitation.

Speakers: Associate Professor Marina Ciccarelli and Dr Susan Morris

Researchers looking at 3D projection

Re-presenting Aboriginal Country: issues of ownership, trespassing and authenticity

Professor Reena Tiwari raised questions of ownership, trespassing and authenticity in the virtual re-presentation of land that belongs to the First Nations People.

A partnership project between Curtin University and Bringing Them Home WA, this presentation was directed by the views of Stolen Generations survivors and their families.

Speaker: Professor Reena Tiwari

Woman looking at a data visualisation

How is big data changing the game in healthcare?

Big data is enabling us to tackle a range of health challenges, including assisting countries to manage and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Epidemiology and disease modelling experts from Curtin and the Telethon Kids Institute, in a panel led by Professor Peter Gething, explored how the big data and public health sectors can work together to address both long-standing diseases like malaria, and novel infections like COVID-19.

Speakers: Professor Peter Gething, Dr Liz Dallimore, Dr Daniel Weiss, Professor Archie Clements and Associate Professor Ewan Cameron

The Future of VR series - VR in Economics

Virtual reality offers us a way to provide an immersive experience to users, one that can be modified in very specific ways. In this session Dr Thomas discussed the use of virtual reality as an environment for conducting studies of economic decision making, as well as outlining the use of experimental methodologies for behavioural research more generally.

Speaker: Dr Stephanie Thomas

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The Future of VR series - VR in Planetary Exploration

Professor Gretchen Benedix discussed how Machine Learning and Virtual Reality can explore the surface of Mars. Attendees flew through a crater on Mars that no lander has visited and took a look at the surface of Mars in a whole new way – visualising millions of impact craters.

Speakers: Professor Gretchen Benedix and Mr Wesley Lamont

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Using the internet to deliver world-wide mental health programs

Mass open online courses (MOOCS) are an innovative, accessible and novel approach to delivering mental health knowledge and skill building to young adults.

Curtin researchers discussed how Curtin’s online edX course, “‘Talk to Me”’ is improving mental health in young adults.

“Talk to me” was developed in collaboration with mental health practitioners from the German National Suicide Prevention Program, university students, and people with lived experience of mental illness. The course and has reached over 40,000 registrants to-date.

Speakers: Dr Ben Milbourn, Professor Sonya Girdler, Mr Ben Horgan, Dr Viktor Kacic, Mrs Trish Tran, Mr Michael Joboy and Mr Timothy Wei Yang Teong

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Indigenous workers planting crops

Restoration Economy: Looking at restoration through an Indigenous lens

The Restoration Economy provides a unique opportunity to improve the way we approach ecological restoration in regional and remote Australia.

This event explored how this innovative approach to restoring land can sustainably reconnect natural, and socioeconomic environments, to support the customary activities, traditional practices and commercial enterprise aspirations of Indigenous Australians.

Speakers: Professor Stephen van Leeuwen, Ms Vivienne Hansen, Mr Oral McGuire, Ms Heidi Mippy, Professor Kingsley Dixon, Dr. Renee Young, Dr Simone Pedrini and Dr. Adam Cross

This presentation was recorded as part of our The Future Of podcast series.

Listen to episode

Panel Speaker on Stage Presenting Vision and Ideas. Conference Lecture Hall. Blurred De-focused Unidentifiable Presenter and Audience. People Attendees. Business Technology Event. Debate Discussion.

Pitch Perfect: Curtin Innovation Start-ups

At this event, some of Curtin’s most promising entrepreneurs pitched their start-up ideas to Perth’s business community.

Working in teams, the entrepreneurs have been developing their business plans as part of Curtin’s 10-week intensive Accelerate program, which is designed to help kick-start and commercialise clever business ideas.

Each team showcased their work to gain important feedback before they graduate from the program and move on to the next stage of their entrepreneurial journey.

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Molecules to save endangered species

This 3D immersive presentation showed how cutting-edge molecular simulation methods are being used to advance cryogenic freezing for the conservation of endangered species.

Speaker: Professor Ricardo Mancera

Will robots steal my job?

What will your job look like 10 years from now?

Our expert panel discussed the capabilities and potential of robots at work, imagine a future where robots and humans work together and debunk some common myths about robots.

Speakers: Dr Giverny De Boeck, Associate Professor Jonathan Paxman and Dr Eleanor Sandry

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RACE for 2030: How Australia can transition to clean energy

RACE (Reliable, Affordable, Clean Energy) for 2030 is a national, industry-led collaborative research centre that is driving innovation for a clean energy future. This event gave first-hand insight into how the centre’s programs will reduce the state’s energy costs, cut carbon emissions and enable a customer-centric approach.

Speakers: Tracy Deveugle-Frink, David Edwards, Brian Innes, Rod Hayes and Professor Greg Morrison

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The Legacy Living Lab: the future of sustainable neighbourhoods

The future of construction is here, and it’s local! The Legacy Living Lab (L3), located in the East Village at Knutsford in Fremantle, is an exemplar of modular housing and the ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ principles of the circular economy.

Curtin researchers who designed and managed its build hosted a tour of L3.

Speakers: Professor Greg Morrison, Dr Roberto Minunno and Mr Timothy O'Grady