Please see Program for Dates and Times

“A Just World” Panel Session

Facilitated by Dr Joan Staples

Join panelists Joanne McCarthy, John Watts, Naomi Hogan and David Morris for a lively and interesting discussion.

The Symbiocene: A Vision for the Future

Dr Glenn A. Albrecht PhD

The Anthropocene, or period of human dominance over nature must give way to the Symbiocene or period of human re-integration with nature. Australia produced a radical thinker who published the following thought in 1946, “The courageous decision to build civilization into a symbiosis with a revitalised world, possessing stable, healthy soil, clear streams, unburnt forests and dust-free air, with people working on the land, close to reality, would bring new balance and new life.”

That thinker was Elyne Mitchell, famous as the author of the Silver Brumby series of horse books for children, less so for her prescient book, ‘Soil and Civilisation’ (1946). I propose a number of Symbiocene principles, based on symbiotic science, that will bring Mitchell’s vision into reality, all of them consistent with Australia Remade and especially part 2, a natural world for now and the future. I also outline the kind of emotional literacy that humans need to love nature and life. We must move away from the age of solastalgia and into the age of ‘eutierria’ or good Earth feelings. – READ MORE

Building an Economy that Works for People and Planet

Dr Amanda Cahill

What would an economy that works for both people and the natural world look like? What are communities around the world doing to make sure that the benefits and costs of economic activities are shared fairly while still regenerating the environment on which we all depend? What can you do to start to build an economy that is good for everyone – now and in the future? We will explore these questions and more, with the aim of generating a list of practical actions participants can take away and apply in their own communities. – READ MORE

Rescuing our Democracy

Dr Joan Staples

During the early 20th century, Australia led the world in democratic reforms – the secret ballot, votes for women.  But now, Australia is slipping down Transparency International’s Corruption list, and sits at 13th place.  Civil society wants to stop this corruption slide.  Over 40 Australian NGOs across all sectors are coming together to defend our faltering democracy.  After working successfully during 2018, the group, Hands Off Our Charities, is reforming to take action.

What do you think should be the first steps to bring about A Thriving Democracy?  – READ MORE

Why we need to anchor Australian democracy in an ‘ethic of care’ 

Imagine if the prerequisites for a thriving democracy are the same as caring relationships? If the central focus of our democracy is how we treat each other? If democracy is a skill, how do we develop the skills needed to build communities in which ethical citizens actively care for the most vulnerable? How do we communicate these expectations widely and consistently? How can psychologist Carol Gilligan’s ‘ethic of care’ research shift the democracy paradigm? – READ MORE