Discover the ideas worth spreading with TEDxAdelaide 2013
Some of the brightest minds in the state will be discussing what it means to explore, what we explore and why. Join us for a full-day of ideas on
Saturday 4 May between 1pm and 6pm.
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Purchase tickets to join the live audience and speakers at the main venue, Bonython Hall.
University of Adelaide staff will be presenting at this inspiring event – for the full list of speakers visit TEDxAdelaide.
Using ancient DNA to track the impacts of human evolution on our bacteria and our health.
Professor Alan Cooper was awarded a prestigious Australian Research Council Federation Fellowship award in 2004, allowing him to move from Oxford University (where he was the Director of the Henry Wellcome Ancient Biomolecules Centre) to Adelaide in 2005 to establish the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA (ACAD).
This international standard research facility was formally opened by the Premier, Mike Rann in August 2006 and provides the specialist equipment and ultra-sterile working environment required for the study of minute traces of preserved genetic material.
ACAD has been designed to provide a centre for evolutionary research in the Southern Hemisphere, particularly the impacts and timing of environmental change (eg climate, humans) on animals, plants and microbes by measuring the genetic records preserved in bones, teeth, leaves and seeds, faeces, and other remains from caves, museums and even sediment cores from lakes, rivers and marine sites.
Prof. Cooper's current research features studies of Australian megafaunal species, permafrost preserved material from the Arctic and Antarctic, ancient human DNA (modern human, Neandertals and Flores hominids), and DNA from sedimentary deposits (marine, terrestrial and freshwater). He is also heavily involved in developing new molecular biology techniques to both improve the ability to recover DNA from the past (eg nuclear genomes, mass sequencing approaches), and to analyse the authenticity of aDNA data.
Technological change and alien encounters: What will our world be like 100 years from now? What will aliens look like? The history of life on earth, as preserved in the fossil record, provides some disconcerting answers.
Associate Professor Michael Lee is an evolutionary biologist at the South Australian Museum and University of Adelaide who is interested in major transitions in evolution. Among other things, he is currently studying why lizards lose their legs, why sea snakes took to the water, and what caused evolution’s “big bang” (the Cambrian explosion).
Wild Law: Law perpetuates the ecological crisis and needs to be radically reconfigured to facilitate a viable human presence on the Earth.
Dr Peter Burdon is a Senior Lecturer at the Adelaide Law School and a member of the management committee of the University of Adelaide Research Unit for the Study of Society, Law and Religion (RUSSLR). Peter holds a BA (History/Philosophy), LLB (hons) and a PhD from the University of Adelaide. His PhD won the Bonython Prize and a University Research Medal for best original thesis. It will be published as part of the Routledge 'Law, Justice and Ecology' series.
Since 2005 Peter has worked with Friends of the Earth Adelaide in the Clean Futures Collective. In this role he has engaged in community advocacy, developed submissions in response to mining projects in South Australia, acted as media spokesperson, organised working trips to aboriginal communities in northern South Australia and organised significant public conferences.
Peter also sits on the Ethics Specialist Group of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, the executive committee of the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature and on the management committee of the Environmental Defenders Office (SA). From 2007-2011 Peter sat on the executive committee of the Conservation Council South Australia.