27 October 2017

The interconnectivity between the arts and science will be explored through both our Grand Challenge Lecture and a showcase of  beautiful, unexpected and inspiring research images as part of the QUT Science in Focus exhibition. Drinks and canapés will be served as the 2017 competition winners are announced.


The Value of an Arts-Science Nexus

In the context of the grand challenges facing our society, we should consider the importance and impacts that can be derived from an art-science nexus. Some may take a view about which is more important in society, but we suggest they can be seen as interwoven strands not parallel tracks. This presentation will provide a brief historical backdrop to show that arts has advanced, inspired and even driven science (and vice versa), and that the pursuit of art and science are not so different in the human endeavour. There are also many current examples of success from arts-science collaborations, and many significant organisations actively pursuing innovation from a collaboration of the two disciplines. The main challenges are how do we facilitate an ongoing cross-fertilisation, and then derive real benefits, cultural or scientific, from the intersection and intertwining of arts and sciences.


Professor Graham Baker (President, Queensland Academy of Arts and Sciences)

Graham Baker is currently President of the Queensland Academy of Arts and Sciences which aspires to enhance the cultural life of the community by facilitating integration and collaboration across the arts and sciences.

Graham spent the first six years of his career in engineering practice in the UK, Oman and Nepal, before embarking on a 30-year career in academe. After teaching and research at Heriot-Watt University Edinburgh, the University of Queensland and then Warwick University, he returned to Australia as Dean of Engineering and for seven years as Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Southern Queensland. In that role, he sponsored research from Public Memory, through climate change and systems biology, to fibre composite materials.

At a sector level, Graham built partnerships across Australian universities and with institutions in China, the USA and Europe. His own research work covers structural and computational mechanics of materials and structures.

He is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers Australia, a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and Fellow of the Queensland Academy. In addition to his role as President of the Queensland Academy of Arts & Sciences, Graham has held governance roles in the engineering and health sectors, and currently supports a disability organisation.

This lecture will be livestreamed at

Join us in The Cube after the lecture to enjoy the arts-science nexus first-hand. The QUT Science in Focus exhibitionshowcases beautiful, unexpected and inspiring images related to QUT research. Drinks and canapés will be served as the 2017 competition winners are announced.

Help decide the people's choice champion

Vote for your favourite top 10 finalist and help decide the people's choice award winner. The entrant with the most votes will receive a $250 cash prize. Vote now!

27 October 2017 - 27 October 2017
Lecture starts at 3.30pm, followed by exhibition at 4.45pm
Level 4, P Block, QUT Gardens Point
Lecture will be held in Kindler Theatre, followed by exhibition in The Cube
Institute for Future Environments
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Join us for the lecture, followed by a special exhibition in The Cube