Inspiration on Tap

Bringing advanced learning and valuable insights to the evening crowd, this event series invites locals to be inspired by JCU’s top researchers and academics as they share their expertise in a relaxed, social environment.

From researchers speaking about the intricate social lives of pollinators like bees to managing urban stormwater and other planning considerations, this series has something for everyone.

Please note these are all previous events, held during 2022. For upcoming events check the JCU Events calendar.

Events that related to activities that contributed to JCU's pursuit of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) feature icons for the relevant SDGs.

Inspiration in October

Date: 13 October 2022

Wrestling with conflict? Wondering about well-being in older age? JCU’s Inspiration on Tap will quench your thirst for discussion as two of our lecturers, Claire Holland and Amanda Krause, share how their research is changing relationships at home and in the workplace.

To Resolve, or Resign Yourself? Dealing with Long-Term Conflicts and Disputes

Imagine a group of colleagues deeply divided over mandatory vaccination policies; political parties disagreeing over climate change; or other conflicts that cannot always be resolved quickly, completely, or even at all. The global crises of the past decade, as well as the change in individual lifestyles, present many opportunities for sustained conflict, whether it be interpersonal, in the workplace or between family members. Join Senior Lecturer Claire Holland who will discuss the options around 'staying with conflict' overtime and how to handle it in a sustainable and constructive way.

SDGs: circle icon for SDG 3circle icon for SDG 11circle icon for SDG 13circle icon for SDG 16

Bringing back the radio star: Promoting well-being in older age

Radio has been shown to act as a social surrogate - even if listening alone, it engenders feelings of company, comfort, and companionship. Australia’s ageing population presents both opportunities and challenges for individuals, their families and society as they attempt to manage the burden of care. As a long-standing, easy-to-use, non-pharmacological tool, the radio has great potential to positively impact quality of older life. Lecturer Amanda Krause will provide an overview of emerging evidence concerning the role of the radio in promoting well-being. Discussion will also focus on how to support effective everyday engagement for enhancing quality of later life for adults living at home, in the community and in aged-care.

SDGs: circle icon for SDG 3circle icon for SDG 9

Location: Townsville

Inspiration in September

Date: 21 September 2022

From food systems to environmental synergisms, hear from Rachael Walshe and Distinguished Professor Bill Laurance at JCU’s Inspiration on Tap as they rethink our approaches to environmental education and tropical ecosystems.

Environmental synergisms spell trouble in the Tropics

Feeling stressed out? Spare a thought for our tropical ecosystems, which are impacted by multiple environmental stressors at any one time. When these stressors combine and amplify, they are called ‘environmental synergisms’ that create new threats for the animals, plants, and pathogens that call the Tropics home. Hear from Professor Bill Laurance as he discusses how these environmental one-two punches are creating new threats for our tropical ecosystems.

SDGs:  circle icon for SDG 13circle icon for SDG 15

Food for thought: Are we teaching our children a broken food system?

What happens when children think their food comes from a box and not from a tree? As we deal with global food shortages and society’s growing disconnection from how food ends up on our plates, the answer might lie in educating the next generation about our food systems. Join PhD Candidate Rachael Walshe as they share how we can encourage educational change and grow more green thumbs in our schools.

SDGs:  circle icon for SDG 2

Location: Cairns

Inspiration in August

Date: 18 August 2022

From entrepreneur giants to miniscule particles accelerating in a laboratory, JCU’s Inspiration on Tap has it all. Examine various approaches to entrepreneurship and discover what is needed to keep a start-up viable long-term with Dr Marcus Powe, from the College of Business, Law and Governance. Then turn your attention to the innovative plasma-wakefield particle accelerator and discover the potential applications across physics, medicine and electronics as we hear from Dr Gregory Boyle, College of Science and Engineering.

Creativity + Innovation = Choice - Aka Entrepreneurship

A menu, a recipe, or an equation? What is the best approach to entrepreneurship? You and your team know how to get the product or service ready for the turbulence of the marketplace. You (the entrepreneur) seem to know how much of each ingredient is needed to enter, survive, and thrive. It seems so simple, what could possibly go wrong? Explore the key components required to ensure your start-up can go the distance.

SDGs:  circle icon for SDG 8circle icon for SDG 17

Plasma wakefield acceleration - the particle accelerator on a benchtop

High-energy particles are very useful things if you can get them. These tiny objects underpin work within medical sciences, the electronics industry and vital physics research. The emerging technology of plasma-wakefield acceleration promises to make particle-accelerators 1000 times smaller, cheaper and more widely available. Discover the wide-ranging benefits and applications of this innovative invention.

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Location: Townsville

Inspiration in July

Date: 27 July 2022

From canines to concrete, JCU’s Inspiration on Tap is taking you on a tour of our natural and built environments. Hear from Associate Professor Matt Field as he discusses the evolutionary span of dingoes and what it can tell us about domestic dogs. Join Associate Professor Lisa Law as she re-imagines our urban waterways to enhance our tropical cities.

From wolf to chihuahua: New research reveals where the dingo sits on the evolutionary timeline of dogs

Thousands of years ago, dingoes were separated from all other dogs and have continued to evolve within Australia’s unique landscape. Associate Professor Matt Field discusses the evolutionary timeline of dingoes and how their unique genome — somewhere between a wolf and the modern domestic dog — can help us better understand our four-legged friends.

Urban stormwater and the Great Barrier Reef: Why we should stop building concrete drains

Concrete may have taken over our urban waterways and stormwater systems as an efficient way to direct drainage, but it comes at the cost of our natural environment. What if there was a better way to design them? Associate Professor Lisa Law explores how re-imagining our urban waterways could provide refuge for wildlife, enhance biodiversity, keep our cities cool, and make Cairns a healthier, more attractive place to live.

SDGs: circle icon for SDG 6circle icon for SDG 11circle icon for SDG 14circle icon for SDG 15

Location: Cairns

Inspiration in May

Date: 11 May 2022

JCU’s Inspiration on Tap is talking trash, treasure and transforming healthcare. Join Dr Katherine Woo as she discusses how ancient rubbish tells us about the past, and find out how AI is improving medical diagnosis and treatment from Dr Euijoon (Osmond) Ahn.

Trash piles to treasure troves: why archaeologists love old rubbish

What can ancient rubbish tell us about past societies and the way people used to live? More than you would think!

From food scraps to broken tools, join JCU Researcher Dr Katherine Woo as she tells us how archaeologists use what people threw away in the past to rewrite human history.

Transforming healthcare with artificial intelligence

For medical professionals, artificial intelligence (AI) acts as a second set of eyes that don’t need to sleep. It provides them with reliable support, helping to reduce workload pressure while improving quality control, workflow and efficiency.

Join JCU Lecturer Dr Euijoon (Osmond) Ahn as he discusses how the use of AI in medical imagery analysis is improving diagnosis, treatment, and patient health outcomes.

SDGs: circle icon for SDG 3

Location: Cairns

Inspiration in April

Date: 21 April 2022

JCU’s Inspiration on Tap is diving deep into maritime mysteries and going on a journey through time, space, geology and geoscience. Explore the underwater world of shipwrecks along the Great Barrier Reef and discover what geoscience can tell us about diseases and how the dinosaurs died.

Mystery Shipwrecks of the Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef (GBR) is just that: a dynamic and dangerous barrier for seafarers to navigate. Recognised most for its biodiversity and beauty, the world’s largest coral reef system also holds an array of maritime mysteries below the surface. Over 900 vessels and aircraft wrecks are resting at the bottom of the Great Barrier Reef, however, only 114 have been discovered so far. Of those, only a handful have been able to have their origins traced.

Join maritime archaeologist and shipwreck mermaid Dr Maddy McAllister as she tells of piecing together historical clues to identify mystery wrecks on the Reef.

SDGs: circle icon for SDG 14

Dino Killers, Exploration Drillers & Whodunit! Thrillers - A Geoscience Odyssey

What can geology and geochemistry tell us about diseases like Alzheimer’s, how the dinosaurs died, and how we can responsibly explore for the critical resources of tomorrow?

Join JCU Researcher and Lecturer Dr Brandon Mahan on a journey through space, time and geoscience to find out the answers to these exciting questions.

SDGs: circle icon for SDG 3

Location: Townsville