Annual Symposium

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The Annual Symposium is the highlight of the Academy’s calendar. Convened by one or more Fellows and held over a full day in November usually in Canberra, the Annual Symposium is a public forum examining an important issue in the social sciences and/or public policy arena.

The Symposium and the Cunningham Lecture (a public lecture which immediately follows the Symposium) are the cornerstones of the Academy’s Annual Events.

The other annual events, open only to Fellows (or in some cases by invitation) include:

– Presentations by New Fellows (on the evening preceding the Symposium)
– The Fellows Dinner (on the evening of the Symposium, following the Cunningham Lecture)
– The New Fellows Breakfast
– (Disciplinary) Panel Meetings
– The Annual General Meeting

Information on registering for these events is dispatched to Fellows as part of Symposium registration instructions.

2018 ASSA Annual Events: 12 – 14 November

– Presentation Videos Now Available Below  –  2018 ASSA Symposium: Regenerating Integrity and Trust in Australian Institutions Tuesday 13 November 2018 | CANBERRA Convened by Professor Adam Graycar AM and Dr Adam Masters The Fellows of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia recognise and respond through their disciplines to matters of national concern.  In […]

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ASSA Annual Events 2017

The Academy’s Annual Events each year present us with an opportunity to showcase the various dimensions and impacts of Social Sciences within and outside the Social Sciences. This year, the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia (ASSA) will join the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences for the annual Symposium meeting, reflecting the need to […]

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Symposium 2016- Social Sciences: Understanding policy impacts

Knowledge about social behaviour and institutions underpins notable advances in economic growth, technological innovation, health, education, good governance and the quality of life, but it also helps to understand why public policy sometimes fails to improve our lot. Much of this knowledge is either taken for granted or, increasingly, reduced to metrics of impact that […]

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Symposium 2015- Social Insurance for the 21st Century?

An assessment of social insurance schemes is timely in both the international and Australian contexts. Some countries are making efforts to roll back some social insurance schemes, often encountering spirited resistance, while others are introducing new ones. In Australia, both Medicare and the NDIS are widely supported while some voices can be heard in support, for […]

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Symposium 2014- Population ageing and Australia’s future

Population ageing and Australia’s future Population ageing is emerging as one of the major global issues of the 21st century. The 2014 Symposium provides a timely opportunity for the Academy, in collaboration with the ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing Research (CEPAR), to lead national thinking on the long-term challenges and opportunities of an […]

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Symposium 2013 – Levelling the spirit

The last decade or so has seen social and economic inequalities increase in many countries including Australia. A recent OECD report points to an increase in income inequality in most (but not all) OECD countries in the two decades to 2008 and notes that: Rising income inequality creates economic, social and political challenges. It can […]

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Symposium 2011- Food regimes and food security

The 2011 Symposium will be held in the academy’s 40th year. To mark this event, the 2011 Symposium provides an opportunity for the social sciences to showcase their role in addressing issues of national importance, and the role of collaboration and cooperation across and between disciplines. The Symposium will examine the issue of food production, distribution and consumption from a range of social science perspectives.

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Symposium 2010- Family fortunes and the Global Financial Crisis

The Global Financial Crisis of 2007-2010 (GFC) has been described as the ‘worst financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s’. This crisis presents a rare opportunity for the social sciences to directly study the effects of the business cycle on the relationship between the market, family households and the well-being of children. The 2010 Symposium will examine how economic downturns affect income and household debt, job quality, family life and public health, and also those industries, occupations and subpopulations most affected.

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Symposium 2009- Space and place matter

The ASSA Symposium 2009 will show-case how ARCRNSISS researchers are using spatially integrated social science (SISS) methods to address issues of national public policy significance in contemporary Australia and which are likely to become increasingly important as a result of the fall-out from the current global financial crisis. That includes social inclusion and disadvantage (particularly affecting youth and older people), employment vulnerability, and managing the rural heartlands. ARCRNSISS researchers will also demonstrate the application of SISS approaches to address issues to do with crime and the development of our big cities and the provision of public services.

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Symposium 2008- Fostering creativity and innovation

Creative and innovative solutions are required for the new social, economic and environmental challenges we face at the national and global levels. The 2008 symposium will focus on what the social sciences can contribute to the broader debate about how Australia can become more creative and innovative. Contributions from the sciences, technology and the humanities will also be examined.

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Symposium 2007- Power, people, water

This symposium is designed on the understanding that there are annual and seasonal variations in demand for and supply of water services in urban areas and is designed to seek a better understanding of the management of water services in times of scarcity as well as comparative water-affluence.

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Symposium 2006- Australians on the move

This symposium addresses such important issues as the continued growth of Australia’s largest cities, the depopulation of inland Australia, the rapid growth of coastal settlements, the movements of Indigenous people, the movements of the young and the old, of women and men, of international immigrants to Australia.

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Symposium 2005- Ideas and influence

The 2005 symposium, ‘Ideas and Influence’, dealt with the relations between research, the facilitation of informed public opinion and the policy community, and intended to show that expert knowledge can shape better futures.

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Symposium 2004- Government as risk manager

Government as risk manager The 2004 symposium, ‘Government as Risk Manager’, had the goal of exploring the role of, and potential for, a financial instrument known as income contingent loans (ICL) to address a range of social and economic problems.

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Symposium 2003- Youth in transition

The ASSA Symposium 2003, held in conjunction with the Association of Asian Social Science Research Councils (AASSREC) 15th Biennial General Conference, will bring together social scientists from a range of countries and disciplines—including psychologists, sociologists, demographers, anthropologists, economists, and social geographers.

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Symposium 2002- Building a better future for our children

The 2002 ASSA Symposium focuses on the health and well-being of the children of Australia. Recent studies from Canada, the United Kingdom and elsewhere heighten awareness of the importance of the early years of human development and specifically the provision by parents, families and society for the younger generations. How well are we managing this […]

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Symposium 2001- Joint Academies Symposium

In his 1992 book The End of Certainty, journalist and Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia (ASSA) Paul Kelly described as ‘the Australian Settlement’ the post-Federation policies of: wage protection (arbitration), trade protection, state paternalism, imperial benevolence and immigration restriction (the White Australia policy). His thesis was that in the […]

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