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Conference showcases influence of research in regional areas

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The diversity of education and research conducted in regional Australia will be celebrated at a conference in Devonport in November.

The Celebrating the Impact of Regional Research and Education Conference will showcase the work of sociologists, health care professionals, historians, business leaders and lecturers.

More than 50 academics and researchers will present at the conference, the first of its kind in the North West, on topics in the fields of health; education; agriculture, business and economics; and society, community and the environment.

Topics include the mental health service preferences of youth in Tasmania, communicating for patient safety, the prevalence and impact of drive-in/drive-out workforces in the West Cost LGA, through to improving regional adoptability of soil management practices.

Shift simulation Burnie
Simulations involving healthcare professionals has shown communication is important in the delivery of better health outcomes for patients.

The University of Tasmania Cradle Coast Academic Community of Practice, a multi-disciplinary group of academics based in the North West, is hosting the event. The group is committed to building networks across disciplines to create distinctive, first-rate teaching and research programs in the region.

The group is excited to provide an opportunity for academics, researchers and members of the public to see what is happening in research across regional Australia, with a focus on Tasmania.

Conference spokeswoman Dr Sarah Prior, who is the Director of Healthcare Redesign for the Tasmanian School of Medicine at the University of Tasmania, said the conference was one of the first times the work being undertaken in regional areas of Australia would be showcased like this.

Dr Sarah Prior

The research that is happening in regional and rural areas of Australia is having a significant influence on how governments, industry and businesses are responding to demand for services.

“Showcasing these abstracts at this interdisciplinary conference will shine light onto the efforts of those working and researching in our regional areas,” Dr Prior said.

“Much of which is happening right here in Tasmania, and beyond.”

The conference will be officially opened by Australian Regional Education Commissioner and former federal senator Fiona Nash on November 11 at the paranaple centre in Devonport.

Tasmanian born Professor Henry Reynolds
Professor Henry Reynolds

Among the guest speakers is renowned historian Henry Reynolds who is one of the country’s leading authorities on the history of Australia’s First Nations people.

Professor Reynolds, who grew up in Tasmania, will speak about what is has been like to be a pioneer in the provinces.  He graduated from the University of Tasmania and in 1965 accepted a lectureship at James Cook University in Townsville, which sparked an interest in the history of relations between settlers and Aborigines.

His scholarly work, especially The Other Side of the Frontier (1981) was critical in changing understanding of the Australian frontier, and he is a contributor to the current SBS series The Australian Wars.

University of Tasmania Cradle Coast campus Pro Vice Chancellor Professor Jim Cavaye will host a discussion with the University’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the research division Professor Anthony Koutoulis, Regional Universities Network Executive Director Alec Webb, Ms Nash and University of Tasmania Director of the Institute for Social Change Professor Libby Lester.

To register to attend the conference go to bit.ly/3Cs8t7o or to find out more head to utas.edu.au/about/events/celebrating-the-impact-of-regional-research-and-education