Brisbane McDonnell academy symposium to tackle world’s great challenges

Issues critical to communities across the world will be discussed at an international symposium in Brisbane from September 22 to 25 2016.

Challenges around the themes of ageing; food, water and climate change; energy and environment; and public health will be in the spotlight at the McDonnell International Scholars Academy 6th International Symposium at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

University of Queensland Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Peter Høj said the symposium, co-hosted by UQ and the Washington University in St Louis, USA (WUSTL), would bring together international researchers, policy makers and corporate partners.

“Discussions will centre on how to tackle critical 21st century problems, aligning strongly with UQ’s mission of knowledge leadership for a better world,” he said.

“Leading research universities such as UQ and WUSTL play a vital role in working to solve complex global problems, and in fostering the next generation of problem-solvers and leaders to create change internationally and in their local communities,” Professor Høj said.

Key speakers will include Australian Department of Industry, Innovation and Science Secretary Ms Glenys Beauchamp and The Boeing Company Chairman, President and CEO Mr Dennis A. Muilenburg.

The Population ageing theme will examine the challenges of dramatic changes in age distribution across the globe and consider the implications of people living longer.

The Food, water and climate change theme will consider the future of food production and the need to reduce the agricultural footprint and soil loss.

The fact that three billion people don’t have access to clean cooking fuels and electricity, despite global energy use having grown by more than 200 per cent in the past 50 years, will be considered in the Energy and environment theme, while the Public health theme will focus on unprecedented changes in global health and the shifting burden of health care.

The speakers featured in the symposium are internationally recognised experts in their fields.

The McDonnell International Scholars Academy partners with 32 universities around the world.

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