Southern Cross University

Southern Cross University is a contemporary and connected regional research university, with remarkable campus locations - Coffs Harbour and Lismore in New South Wales and the uniquely situated Gold Coast Airport campus in southern Queensland. Our regional environs provide living laboratories for learning and research and creative hubs for artistic endeavour. Southern Cross University has a growing research profile, with 24 research areas identified ‘at or above world standard’ in the most recent Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) national evaluation. Our research strengths include disciplines as diverse as plant genetics, zoology, geoscience, oceanography, engineering, nursing, and complementary and alternative medicine.


Displaying 161 - 180 of 211 articles

Don’t you just want to hug him to death? Antoinette vd Rieth

Explainer: what is cute aggression?

Humans respond to cute. Show us just about any little critter with a big round head and a pair of large, blinking-in-the-headlights eyes and cooing will ensue. Add to that a set of chubby cheeks, a button…
We all know what’s happened, but what happens next? Mitch Duncan/AAP

Election 2013 results and the future: experts respond

Australia has elected a Coalition government. So what will this mean for key policy areas? Our experts take a closer look at what’s in store for business, the economy, the environment, the National Broadband…
The intractable asylum seeker issue has dominated Australian politics like no other recently. Where will it play most in the coming election? AAP/Paul Miller

Stop the votes: the seats where the asylum issue resonates most

The vexed issue of asylum seekers arriving by boat on Australian shores has dominated our political psyche for over a decade. Prime minister Kevin Rudd’s announcement shortly after returning to office…
The psychiatrists’ bible, the DSM-5, recently added ‘gambling disorder’ to its list of ‘behavioural addictions’. But how true is its definition, and should it be changed? AAP/Mick Tsikas

Disordered gambling: focusing on more than just ‘problem gamblers’

Since the issue of problem gambling was placed under the national spotlight by the Productivity Commission in 1999, we have witnessed ongoing public debate about Australia’s gambling industries. The commission…
We have to get more people into national parks if parks are to have a future. Flickr/Tatiana Gerus

Our national parks need visitors to survive

Despite what many commentators on The Conversation have said, conserving biodiversity in our national parks isn’t the way to save them. Parks need visitors to get vital community and political support…
The notion that smaller pokies venues are more harmful than larger ones isn’t borne out in research. AAP

Size really does matter: big pokie venues are the most dangerous

With the NSW government rushing to approve a new casino in Sydney, the prospect of more casinos in Brisbane and the Gold Coast, and a planned expansion of Adelaide casino, a new wave of gambling proliferation…
Despite stated intentions otherwise, are poker machines at James Packer’s planned second Sydney casino at Barangaroo inevitable? AAP/Dean Lewins

Packer’s Barangaroo Casino and the inevitability of pokies

When is a casino not a casino? According to NSW premier Barry O’Farrell, who last week approved James Packer’s Crown Limited bid to establish Sydney’s second casino, a casino isn’t a casino without pokies…
Polar bears were on thin ice, where are they now? ilovegreenland/Flickr

Don’t-care bears: should we be worried about polar bears?

Polar bears were once the icon of global warming. Twenty years ago scientists raised the possibility that a world without Arctic sea ice would be a world without polar bears. Last year’s record polar melt…
Exposure to even a single fibre of asbestos dust can cause significant health problems. Image from

Health harms of asbestos won’t be known for decades

The digital age crashed into the bronze age when the roll out of Australia’s high-speed broadband network was disrupted by the discovery of asbestos in Telstra pits in recent weeks. Workplace relations…
The Antarctic blue whale was exploited to near extinction because it continued to be hunted opportunistically alongside other whale species. Isabel Beasley

How to hunt a species to extinction

Exploitation is one of the major causes of extinction. More than 120 species have become extinct at least in part because of hunting, fishing and logging, including the famous Passenger Pigeon. Wildlife…
Babies’ milk teeth carry their early food history, and this remains stable for tens of thousands of years. Allygirl520

Got milk? Our breastfeeding habits are older than you think

We know at least six months of exclusive breastfeeding is the best start to a baby’s life. What’s amazing is it seems ancient hominids knew that too. In a paper published today in Nature, we analysed the…
Monitoring radon could reveal whether coal seam gas extraction is messing with the soil’s structure. Jeremy Buckingham

Earthquakes and coal seam gas

Two recent peer reviewed studies on opposite sides of the globe have shed light on how monitoring of earthquakes and determining greenhouse gas emissions from the coal seam gas (CSG) industry may be connected…
More than 400 amphibian species are in decline, but at least one - the Fleay’s barred frog - is showing strong signs of recovery. Froggydarb/Wikimedia Commons

Are our frogs bouncing back?

Globally, amphibians have suffered serious declines and extinctions over the last 30 years. But our research, published today, shows that at least one subtropical rainforest frog is recovering. The most…
As CSG development races ahead in Queensland and NSW, even supporters want to make sure the industry is safe and well-regulated. AAP Image/Dave Hunt

We need more research into the safety of CSG, says community

With the debate increasing over coal seam gas (CSG) exploration, and all sides claiming the moral high ground, how do you find out what the community really thinks about the issue? Well you could do what…
Are displays of emotion from sportspeople about convincing us that it’s not just about the money? fox2mike/flickr

It’ll end in tears: why athletes cry and what it means

Any major sporting triumph without euphoric emotion or a serious opening of the floodgates would seem strange. Commentators tell us that tears show “passion”. Fans seem to demand them. It wasn’t always…
Artworks by Mic Eales from the Inspired Lives exhibition at The Dax Centre. ‘End of statistics’ in the foreground. Mic Eales

The art of healing suicide: re-creating original narratives to embrace life

My doctoral studies in visual arts entails working with people who are not necessarily visual artists, but see the value in artistically expressing their story to expand our understanding of suicide. Suicide…
There will always be conflict over how water is used, but we seem to be getting closer to agreement. augustusoz/Flickr

Murray-Darling proposal brings us closer to shared understanding

Sharing water between different groups in society is almost inevitably a very contentious issue. Throughout the world, there are daily conflicts between people about how water can be used; at an individual…


More Authors