Em. Prof. Robert Clancy AM — The History of Science in Australia

Emeritus Professor Robert Clancy AM will discuss the history of science in Australia and how our our ‘early’ and pre-WW2 science connects to today.

Professor Clancy will look at the ”Big Science” developments in the 300 years prior to settlement and examining the patterns and successes in science through the first 150 years of Australian science. What lessons can we draw from the momentum of 18th century “world” science and pre-WW2 science. Are there messages for today?

Arguably, science in Australia has become prescriptive and embroiled in bureaucracy. Leaders, mentors, and role models are few and far between. Nobel Prizes winners (with some connection to Australia) were overwhelmingly men or women who either worked in protected research environments and/or responded to immediate practical problems. Most importantly, two thirds did their critical work over 50 years ago.

Professor Clancy contends that schools are either not teaching the building blocks of science or not teaching it well, and contrary to opinion, we are less innovative in schools (i.e. we are three years behind children in China and Korea) and in research, and we struggle to provide career paths for those who do commit to professional science.

Join us for what is sure to be an informative and stimulating talk.

No Bookings Required


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