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University of Sydney Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences presents

Outside the Square—Q&A, our way 2019

Outside the Square is a series of interactive conversations designed especially for alumni and friends of The University of Sydney.


It’s our version of Q&A, held off campus at the Old Rum Store—a five-minute stroll from Central—where contemporary issues are unpacked by our sharpest academics and graduate experts in front of a live audience who use their phones to comment and ask questions. There’s drinks. There’s food. It’s fun.


*Ticket prices include drinks and catering.


Phone addiction: Mental health and inner livesThursday 9 May, 6-8pm


Most of us check our phone 85 times a day. We’re increasingly … distracted. It’s harder to concentrate on a single task from beginning to end. It wasn’t meant to be like this.


With our experts, we’ll take some time out to ponder what might be lost in the trade-off for all this convenience and connectivity and ask: What are our phones doing to our heads and hearts?


Public Art: A sound investment or waste of money?Thursday 13 June, 6-8pm


Public art. In conjunction, these two simple words tend to provoke heated reactions from even the most level-headed of us. When everyone’s a critic and large-scale works are funded from the meagre resources allocated to affordable housing and other practical services, it’s a tricky issue.


To help us evaluate, we’ve invited the ardent opinions of the artist responsible for the Wynyard Station escalator installation, a sceptical City of Sydney Councillor and an art curator with a point to prove.


Health Data and Personalized Medicine: How will you be treated?Thursday 22 August, 6-8pm


Very soon, treatment based on our individual genetic information and health histories will be readily available. Some suggest this will lead to vastly improved diagnoses, avoidance of detrimental side-effects, fewer errors and greater efficiencies when we visit the GP. But these breakthroughs are not without risk. 


Join us as we learn more about this incoming disruption from experts in metabolic cybernetics, eHealth and sociology and discover what medical treatment could mean for you in the very near future.


Uluru Statement from the Heart: Recognition and RenewalThursday 26 September, 6-8pm


When the Uluru Statement from the Heart was released in 2017, many recognised it as a transformative historic moment: an unprecedented, national, Indigenous consensus on Indigenous constitutional recognition. Two years later, the belief in, and desire for national healing and renewal remains.


With our own Director of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Research and one of the country’s most celebrated historians, we’ll consider the Uluru Statement and explore our deep past, what it means today, and where it can lead us tomorrow.


Making a Killing: The ethics of true crimeThursday 24 October, 6-8pm


Serial. Making a M**der. Teacher’s Pet. These series have been streamed and downloaded by millions of avid listeners. Due to its capacity to influence public opinion and alter the course of justice, we’re convinced true crime series equates to meaningful content. But is it?


Join us as we investigate true crime.


The Rise of Veganism: The end of animal farming?Thursday 28 November, 6-8pm


Many commentators believe 2019 is the year veganism will finally go mainstream. 


Is a vegan diet sustainable? Is an exclusively plant-based diet really better for the planet? And does synthetic meat stand a chance? Join a leading diet researcher, an agri-food and environmental expert and a political scientist committed to animal welfare as they consider what the rise of veganism might mean for us all.


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