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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The government argues that plain packaging is “directed to informing, redressing and reducing harm to the public health.” AAPIMAGE/Tracey Nearmy

Big Tobacco’s box fetish: plain packaging at the high court

Tobacco, says the World Health Organisation (WHO), is “the only legal consumer product that kills when used exactly as intended by the manufacturer.” Supporting the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco…
For the majority of Newstart Allowance recipients, payments barely cover the cost of rent - let alone other living expenses. AAP

Paltry Newstart Allowance is fast becoming a poverty trap

Despite ongoing uncertainty about global economic conditions, prosperity in Australia remains both very high and relatively widespread. But there is one group in Australia who has not shared in our rising…
Flickr/Discover Science & Engineering

Primary school science education – is there a winning formula?

Australia’s Chief Scientist, Ian Chubb, released a worrying report earlier this year. Unhealthy Science? University Natural and Physical Sciences 2002 - 2009/10 revealed the number of students studying…
Australian troops work with Afghan National Army forces in Uruzgan province in August 2011.

Mission accomplished? Australia withdraws from Afghanistan early

Prime minister Julia Gillard today announced the revised timetable for the withdrawal of Australian troops from Afghanistan. Within 12 to 18 months the majority of Australian military forces will leave…
Orchestra of nature: artist Bartholomäus Traubeck has converted pieces of trees into music. Eric C Bryan

Forest sonata: listening to the music of the trees

What is the music of trees? German artist Bartholomäus Traubeck spun slices of logs on turntables that translate their textures and annual rings into music. Traubeck calls the result Years, and I played…
Recycling seems like a bright idea, but is its shine coming off? Kilgub/Flickr

What a waste! Why reducing rubbish might not make sense

The initial impressions most people have of waste-reduction campaigns and calls for greater recycling are that they must be good. After all, most of us are taught from a very early age that waste is a…
A Greens/EFA MEPs protest against ACTA at the European Parliament in Strasbourg. The protestors urged their fellow members to join them in standing up for democracy and a free internet. ©Photo European Union

Opening Pandora’s box: secret treaty threatens human rights

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) 2011 - Twitter hashtag #ACTA - is a controversial trade agreement designed to provide for stronger enforcement of intellectual property rights. There’s been…
The level of business crime is lower in China than other emerging economies - but bribery and forgery are more frequent than in Australia. AAP

A snapshot of business crime in China

Few crime victim surveys have been conducted with Chinese populations, but a recently released study, Business and the Risk of Crime in China, analyses the results of the first large scale victimisation…
Collaboration is the only way to preserve biodiversity. Kasi Metcalfe

Forget the market: competition won’t save species

Plans for conserving Australian species rely on successfully collaborating across regions and across jurisdictions. It makes sense: species don’t recognise state or local government boundaries. But at…
Scientists and politicians rely on each other – so how best to develop that relationship? mayhem

Scientists and policy-makers: it’s time to bridge the gap

“Our lack of ability to position our argument in the public means science has not influenced public debate as it should.” So said Australian National University’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Young at…
Tomorrow’s Burmese elections will likely finally see Aung San Suu Kyi get into parliament. AAP Image/Angela Brkic

Aung San Suu Kyi and Burma’s small steps towards change

Only two years after general elections in 2010, the world will be watching Burma’s by-elections to be held tomorrow. Although the results cannot change the overall political balance of power with only…
It’s time we got to the core of our planet’s early history. Derringdos

What on Earth! Hot news on our planet’s formation

As of today, the world might have changed forever. A fundamental assumption underpinning much of modern geochemistry is that the earth has the same composition as a class of meteorites called chondrites…
Diplomacy, rather than the use of force, has been a key plank of Brazil’s foreign policy. Embaixada dos EUA - Brasil

On the issue of force, Brazil’s stance is non-negotiable

The five major emerging economies – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) – will meet at a summit today to discuss the possibility of a new development bank and trade agreements between…
Cameron’s voyage was a source of genuine wonder … so why the sinking feeling? Mark Thiessen/EPA

James Cameron and the Mariana Trench sparks titanic angst

Today as I ate lunch, Titanic, Terminator and Avatar director James Cameron was at the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest point in the ocean. We know this for a couple of reasons. Not only did he…

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