Soapbox Science 2019 Sydney

The 10th of August 2019 is Sydney’s inaugural Soapbox Science event and what better place to host it than Circular Quay, with the backdrop of the world famous Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge. We are excited to showcase the amazing and varied research that is carried out in Sydney, and Australia, to the general public and to encourage more people to engage with STEMM subjects and topics.

The timing couldn’t be better for Sydney’s first event as the last few years have seen Australian institutions undertake a massive effort to address gender equity and diversity in STEMM subjects. This is highlighted by several institutes being accredited Bronze status by the Athena Swan Program in late 2018.

Meet the Soapbox Science 2019 Sydney local organising team.



Details of the location and timing of the event

: 10th of August 2019

Location: Circular Quay (outside the Museum of Contemporary Art), Sydney, NSW, 2000

Time: 12-3pm




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

12-1pm Session:

Dr Gal Winter (@GalWinter2), University of New England, “The gut microbiome: Ask not what you can do for your microbes but what they can do for YOU”

Dr Paola A. Magni (@doc_magni), Murdoch University, “Crimes, Critters & Clues”

Dr Jessica Borger (@jessborger), Monash University,Designing superior killers of cancers”
Read the blog: We need to return the ‘S’ to STEM with the very important ‘women’ prefix

Dr Dominique Tanner (@DrDomTanner), University of Wollongong, “Where do precious metals come from? The story of how magmas and volcanoes can make a gold mine… and more!”


1-2pm session:

Riddhi Gupta (@riddhisw), The University of Sydney, “Machine Learning and Quantum Control Using our engineering past to navigate a quantum future”
Read the blog: A quantum leap for diversity

Hasti Hayati, University of Technology Sydney,Dynamics of running dogs.”

Dr Emi Tanaka (@statsgen), The University of Sydney, “Is diversity important? What we can learn from plant breeding.”

Dr Emma Camp (@emmafcamp), University of Technology Sydney, “Can Super Corals really be Super Heroes for the Great Barrier Reef?”


2-3pm session:

Associate Professor Anne Tiedemann (@AnneTiedemann1), The University of Sydney, “Physical activity: the elixir of health and wellbeing”

Dr Yee Lian Chew (@WormyChew), University of Wollongong, “What can worms teach us about the brain?”

Associate Professor Arti Agarwal, University of Technology Sydney, “Optics in life: internet and other things…”

Dr Lisa A. Williams (@williamslisaphd), University of New South Wales, “Is the pursuit of happiness shortsighted?”


Discover our 2019 speakers:

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We are grateful to our sponsors, without which our event could not bring fantastic researchers to the public.

Host Institute & Gold Sponsor

UTS Faculty of Science
UTS Science is committed to providing current students a strong foundation in STEM with world-class teaching, purpose-built facilities and industry-standard equipment. For future students we run a number of outreach programs to inspire, motivate and build interest in STEM – with real world, hands on workshops. Our diverse faculty and academic staff contribute towards UTS’s broader goals of inclusivity such as the Athena Swan charter. Twitter: @UTS_Science, @UTSEngage

UTS Women in Engineering and IT
UTS Women in Engineering and IT (WiEIT) Program fosters a network of passionate females and males who are actively involved in the development of our next generation of young engineering and IT professionals. Twitter:@UTSFEIT


Gold Sponsors

The Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Engineered Quantum Systems (EQUS) is building quantum machines that harness the full spectrum of quantum physics. EQUS researchers are based at five universities around the nation. They are solving challenging research problems at the interface of basic quantum physics and engineering, and working with partners in industry to translate these research discoveries into practical devices.  Twitter: @ARC_EQUS

The Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence for Mathematical and Statistical Frontiers (ACEMS) brings together for the first time a critical mass of Australia’s best researchers in applied mathematics, statistics, mathematical physics and machine learning. The intent of ACEMS is to create world-class research at the frontiers of the mathematical sciences and to translate this research into new insights that benefit society. Twitter: @ACEMathStats


Silver Sponsors

The ARC Centre of Excellence in Future Low-Energy Electronics Technologies (FLEET) addresses a grand challenge: reducing the energy used in information and communication technology (ICT), which now accounts for 8% of the electricity use on Earth, and is doubling every 10 years. The current, silicon-based technology is 40 years old, and reaching the limits of its efficiency. To allow computing to continue to grow, FLEET is developing a new generation of ultra-low energy electronics.



Bronze Sponsors

POCD Scientific
POCD Scientific is a locally-owned pathology and scientific supply company, manufacturing pathology stains and providing solvents and other chemicals, as well as distributing a growing range of quality brands of laboratory equipment and consummables from many popular manufacturers around the world.



Other sponsors

Property NSW is responsible for the management of a number of public domain areas including The Rocks & Darling Harbour. Property NSW is contributing to our event by providing a fantastic location for this event to take place as well as promoting our event on the website.


Franklin Women is a community of women working in health and medical research related careers. Our aim is to bring together like-minded women to create opportunities for networking, personal and professional development and career progression, both in and outside of academia. Oh, and to have a little fun too.


The Australian Science Communicators is the peak body for science communicators and science journalists in Australia. Established in 1994, the Australian Science Communicators has grown to a national network of more than 1650 subscribers and 450 financial membersworking in science and technology communication, including science journalists and writers, public information officers for academic and research organisations, scientists, museum professionals, science educators, science film-makers, and many other diverse professions united by the common theme of making science accessible. We are a not-for-profit organisation.


Sydney Science Festival



National Science Week