Soapbox Science 2017 Townsville

On August 12th 1-4pm, as part of National Science Week 2017, Townville’s Gregory Street Amphitheatre will welcome leading Queensland female scientists for the first Soapbox event in tropical North Queensland. 12 women who work in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics or Medicine are bravely stepping out of their comfort zone and onto soapboxes for an entertaining afternoon of scientific debate and discussion. Our aim remains to inspire new generations of women scientists, challenge perception of what a scientist does and looks like, and engage with the public and the wider community. The event is free. If you’d like to see what Soapbox Science looks like in action, have a look at the Soapbox Science 2015 video


We could not organise this event without the contributions of our generous sponsors: the ARC Centre of Excellence in Environmental Decisions

Proudly supported by the Advance Queensland initiative and the ARC Centre of Excellence in Environmental Decisions.

Details of the location and timing of the event

:  Saturday 12th August 2017

Address: Gregory Street Amphitheatre on the strand,


Time: 1 – 4pm

Volunteer with Soapbox Science  Townsville

Are you passionate about science and love talking to people about it? Do you want to help raise awareness about gender equality in science careers? Soapbox Science Townsville is looking for volunteers to help out at their event on August 12th 2017!

Please sign up here by 4th August

Soapbox Science is not just about the speakers. Without a supportive team of committed, enthusiastic people, a Soapbox event simply cannot happen. Each event relies on an animated team of up to 20 volunteers. Volunteers play a crucial role in rounding up the public, chatting to them informally about science, supporting the speakers by managing props and helping to calm any pre-box nerves, as well as handing out Soapbox goodies to lucky audience members! But perhaps the most important role of the volunteers is gathering data so we can effectively monitor the success of the event: volunteers carry out the bulk of our streamlined evaluation process, through interviews, observations and counting footfall.

Join us for an afternoon of fun, informal and inspiring science and help challenge ideas about who can be a scientist!


Selected from a competitive pool of researchers from in and around Townsville, our 12 speakers will be sharing their work in technology, science, medicine and engineering. The winners and their discussion topics included:

Dr Zsuzsa Banhalmi-Zakar (@banhalmizakar), James Cook University  “Scrubbing the Earth clean”

A/Prof Ling Yin, James Cook University “From tables to teeth: all-ceramic dental crowns?”

Dr Astrid Vachette, James Cook University “Disaster Girl: Social Sciences to the Rescue”

 Dr Sara Brice (@SarBrice), James Cook University “Sport + Science”

A/Prof Helen Boon (@BoonHJ2016), James Cook University “ADHD, fact or fiction?”

Ms Giana Bastos Gomes (@GianaBGomes), James Cook University “CSI underwater: catching fish killers”

Dr Karen Joyce (@kejoyce2), James Cook University “A drone’s eye view of our world”

Dr Vanessa Adams, Macquarie University “Conservation from the board room”

Dr Sandra Abell (@SandraAbell3), James Cook University “Treasure hunting for thylacines, zombie and truffle fungi”

Dr Kathryn Hall (@ Kat4Sponges), ABRS National Taxonomy Research Grant Program, Queensland museum “Totally absorbed by sponges!”

Mrs Padmakana Malakar (@Padmakana), James Cook University “Fighting Malaria with Photochemistry”

Dr Stephanie Duce (@StephanieDuce),  James Cook University “Surf’s Up! Coral reefs vs big waves”