La Trobe University

La Trobe University was established in 1964. It takes a brave, bold approach to higher education and delivers socially responsible, inclusive, relevant and radical teaching, learning and research. La Trobe University is also a leading provider of regional higher education in Australia.


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RBA governor Glenn Stevens will no doubt be portrayed in a flattering light if the board cuts rates today: but not everyone is a winner. AAP

Not everyone wins when interest rates fall

UPDATE: The Reserve Bank of Australia has cut Australia’s official cash rate by a larger-than-expected 50 basis points, to 3.75%. In the likely event that the Reserve Bank Board chooses to ease the target…
‘Green tape’ is an emotive term that tries to make condemning environmental protection look like common sense. Bill Rogers

Spinning ‘green tape’ as the climate changes

With only inverted commas signalling the spin, the news media have happily re-cycled the term “green tape”, the latest rhetorical gambit by those decrying environmental protections as unnecessarily delaying…
Raising the cost of FoI applications is not the answer. Flickr/chrisjohnbeckett

Gillard’s impending FoI blunder

The Gillard government will make a huge mistake if it follows through with plans to overturn freedom of information reforms and introduce an increase to the cost of applications. The expected change comes…
Encouraging GPs to “on-sell” products to patients is likely to produce unnecessary or inappropriate prescribing. fuzzirella/Flickr

Swisse Vitamins highlights the failure of industry self-regulation

Swisse Vitamins Pty Ltd has been in the news recently over their Federal Court action to suppress a determination of the Therapeutic Goods Advertising Complaint Resolution Panel (CRP) about a number of…
Our thinly spread efforts to prop up the environment are failing and it is time for tough decisions about what we can realistically preserve. Flickr/rexboggs5

Farms versus nature: how do we decide what to protect?

Australian farmers take pride in their efficient and productive farming systems, competing in the global economy and without many of the large subsidies given to their counterparts in Europe and North…
A small experiment won’t identify even a large effect as significant while a big experiment is likely to see even a worthless effect as statistically significant. 8 Eyes Photography Flickr

Mind your confidence interval: how statistics skew research results

“Most patients using the new analgesia reported significantly reduced pain.” Such research findings sound exciting because the word significant suggests important and large. But researchers often use the…
Medicines Australia’s code of conduct governs the promotion of prescription drugs and the relationship of industry to health professionals. LadyofProcrastination/Wikimedia Commons

Consumer input in Medicines Australia’s code of conduct review

TRANSPARENCY AND MEDICINE – A series examining issues from ethics to the evidence in evidence-based medicine, the influence of medical journals to the role of Big Pharma in our present and future health…
(L-R) Intensive Care Chaplain Di Roche, Catholic Chaplain Father Jaison Kuzhiyil, Uniting Chaplain Julie Telfer feature in Hospital Chaplains. ABC TV

God of many faiths eludes some Hospital Chaplains

“No one laughs at God in a hospital”, chants popular Russian-American songwriter Regina Spektor. Her words come to mind as I preview the first episode of Hospital Chaplains, a new ABC series broadcasting…
The business and medical worlds are replete with examples of unethical conduct when it comes to accepting and giving gifts. Li'l Wolf

Ethics of accepting suppliers’ gifts in the business v medical world

TRANSPARENCY AND MEDICINE – A series examining issues from ethics to the evidence in evidence-based medicine, the influence of medical journals to the role of Big Pharma in our present and future health…
Studies have shown older people can enthusiastically adopt new opportunities to stay in contact with younger generations. lyzadanger/Flickr

Inclusion vital for a healthy ageing population

Over the past century life expectancy has increased dramatically and older citizens around the globe will soon outnumber children. By 2050, nearly one out of every four people will be older than 60 years…
Former Health Services Union head Craig Thomson represents a vital vote for the Gillard government. AAP Image/Penny Bradfield

Health Services Union: why union members deserve better

The ACTU yesterday voted to suspend the Health Servives Union from affiliation until they can prove that issues of governance have been dealt with appropriately. Although it does seem to have been a slow…

Sex cells: virgin birth in sexually active fish

I recently wrote about virgin birth in hammerhead sharks where I tried to explain parthenogenesis, a process at the level of the sex cells which allows females to produce offspring without the benefit…

Sex cells: virgin birth in the hammerhead shark

I was listening to Triple J on Tuesday afternoon when comedian David O’Doherty shared what he called a show stopping fact: female hammerhead sharks can produce baby hammerhead sharks without the benefit…

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