Cairns-based public health researcher Malcolm Forbes is off to Sydney this week (from June 1), having been selected to take part in the inaugural China Australia Millennial Project (CAMP).
CAMP has brought together 100 emerging leaders and innovators from China and Australia to form 20 think tanks, tackling challenges facing both countries.
Dr Forbes is part of a group working on health and wellness, with a focus on how to persuade individuals, health insurers and governments to prioritise preventive health measures.
“Our group includes a range of skills and experience, from genetics and finance to other medical doctors like me,” he said.
“Our task is to convince people to act on something that we already know: that prevention is better, and cheaper, than cure.
“We’re looking for practical solutions, and we’re supported by mentors with experience in business and innovation.”
The group members will meet face to face for the first time in Sydney, but have been meeting online to work on their project.
“It’s inspiring, to meet highly motivated people from another country and tackle a problem together,” Dr Forbes said.
“Although our health systems differ, I’ve been interested to find how much common ground there is, as well as the personal interests we share.”
Funded by the Australia China Council, CAMP aims to support young entrepreneurs from Australia and China to kick-start their own projects by pitching their plans to investors and government.
Each think tank will take part in a five-day innovation lab in Sydney before presenting their ideas to a panel as part of the Vivid Festival.
Having completed his medical degree at James Cook University, Dr Malcolm Forbes is now a postgraduate researcher at the Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention at JCU in Cairns.
His research project, supported by a National Health and Medical Research Council scholarship, is an investigation of the factors that contribute to some Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people successfully managing their chronic diseases.
“We already know what contributes to the progression of chronic disease. This study looks at what factors are associated with either improving health, or slowing the progress of disease,” he said.
Issued: June 1, 2015
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