Australian National University

ANU was established, in 1946, to advance the cause of learning and research for the nation. It is consistently ranked among the world’s best universities and many ANU graduates go on to become leaders in government, industry, research and academia.

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A medieval engraving of the persecution of witches: historians are increasingly demonstrating that belief in witchcraft survived in Western Europe well into the 18th, 19th and even 20th centuries. Wikimedia Commons

Can we learn from the past in tackling witchcraft-related violence today?

It is estimated that thousands of people are killed in witchcraft-related violence around the world each year. How can we tackle this problem today?
Could music one day be something we experience through augmented reality, responding to the way we move through the world? Sound supplemented with colours and shapes? Mavis Wong/The Conversation NY-BD-CC

Trust Me, I’m An Expert: How augmented reality may one day make music a visual, interactive experience

Music. The Conversation67.8 MB (download)
Today, we're hearing about a researcher who records birdsong, how tech changes music and why song might help address Indigenous language loss.
Inside the pupa (or chrysalis), the caterpillar actually turns to liquid as it transforms into a butterfly or moth. Shutterstock

Curious Kids: Do butterflies remember being caterpillars?

Scientists were not sure if an adult butterfly could remember things it learned as a caterpillar. Then a study by a team of US scientists found something very interesting.
To become prime minister, Turnbull made himself a willing hostage at the outset to right-wing policies that contradicted his political persona. AAP/Mick Tsikas

The Turnbull government is all but finished, and the Liberals will now need to work out who they are

In staying hostage to this right-wing lunge, rather than fighting to move it back to the mainstream, Turnbull erased his moderate face, destroying his only utility – electoral utility – to the Liberals.
Many are conflicted about whether the population should continue to grow and what the population of the future should look like. from shutterstock.com

Here’s what a population policy for Australia could look like

Many people think a population policy is about control – like the one-child policy in China, for instance. But modern population policies are about population-well-being.
Households feeling the pinch from frozen wages feeds into slower economic growth, and policymakers need to find a solution. Bacho/Shutterstock

This is what policymakers can and can’t do about low wage growth

Governments can't undo the technological changes behind frozen wages and rising inequality. The best policy is to invest in education and training to give workers skills of value in the new economy.
Felicity Burke/The Conversation

Trees are made of human breath

Urban trees are literally made with the help of human breath – they turn the carbon dioxide we breathe out into the building blocks of plant growth. So your local trees have a piece of you inside them.
Justine Varga, Photogenic Drawing, 2017, installation view, Sydney Contemporary, Carriageworks. Photo: Nick Kreisler Courtesy of the artist and Hugo Michell Gallery, Adelaide

Tarrawarra Biennial underwhelms rather than energises

The 2018 Tarrawarra Biennial explores the act of creation itself, dissolving boundaries between mind/body, physical/spiritual, and form/content. But the experience in the gallery is sometimes something of an anti-climax.
Blue-sky thinking? It’s hard to assess the evidence base for the predicted outcomes of the National Energy Guarantee. AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts

Could the NEG bring down power prices? It’s hard to be confident that it will

The final design of the National Energy Guarantee promises that the policy will drive down power prices. But there is precious little evidence for this assertion.
Rampasasa people are from Waemulu village, Flores – near Liang Bua where ‘the Hobbit’ fossils were discovered. Dean Falk, Florida State University

We know why short-statured people of Flores became small – but for the extinct ‘Hobbit’ it’s not so clear

Modern day people of short stature became physically small due to the effects of living on a small island or forested environment. But we're not sure why "the Hobbit" of Flores was so small.

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