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Established in 1989, the University of Western Sydney `brings knowledge to life' in the education of students for employment, the application of research to contemporary problems, and mutually enriching partnerships with local schools, organisations, businesses and community groups.

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George Brandis has a heavy load to lift as Attorney-General – but his priorities for the Arts portfolio could be clarified. AAP Image/Mick Tsikas

What are the priorities for George Brandis, Minister for the Arts?

For artists and cultural workers, a change of government leads to a change of priorities – and often, opportunities disappear. So what do we know about the priorities for the current Minister for the Arts?
The Bellinger Snapping Turtle is under threat, and that bodes ill for the entire ecosystem. Copyright: Gary Bell/OceanwideImages.com

Turtle extinction event bodes ill for our waterways

The Bellinger River Snapping Turtle is under threat of extinction, and it suggests something very wrong with the whole ecosystem.
Many cities are starting to recognise that street art has both a cultural and economic value. SalTheColourGeek/Flickr

Speaking with: Cameron McAuliffe on graffiti, art and crime

Speaking with: Cameron McAuliffe on graffiti, art and crime. CC BY-ND21.2 MB (download)
Is graffiti art or crime? While many cities have adopted tough legal measures to prevent graffiti, they are also beginning to recognise the cultural and economic value of street art.
Some people may be turned on knowing their sexual activities are being monitored by experts. Yves Hanoulle/Flickr

Health Check: why some people have sex for science

The who, how, and what of sex-based laboratory studies may all be a little problematic, so can we generalise from their findings?
NSW Labor has promised a Great Koala National Park to protect koalas, but what about more insidious threats to the environment? Nicki Mannix/Flickr

Key environment policy still unknown in the NSW election

NSW has nearly 300 threatened animal species, including koalas and pygmy-possums. Yet we still don't know the government's plans in one area that could pose a serious threat to NSW's wildlife.
Insider trader Lukas Kamay will serve a minimum of four-and-a-half years in prison. Julian Smith/AAP

Seven-year sentence for insider trading unlikely to deter others

The sentences handed to insider traders Lukas Kamay and Christopher Hill send a strong message, but preventing the opportunity for such crimes to occur is just as important.
New homes like this one in Sydney’s south-west would be within reach for more first-time buyers in New South Wales if the state government supported shared home buying schemes. Dean Lewins

NSW is dragging its feet on help for aspiring first home owners

New South Wales is Australia's most populous state, with the most expensive capital city – yet it's done less than many other states to develop cost-effective options for aspiring home owners.
Australian private schools are increasingly taking their senior students to volunteer in orphanages, but they’re doing more harm than good. Lemuellz/Flickr

Orphanage trips by Aussie schools are doing more harm than good

Australian private schools are increasingly taking their senior students to volunteer in orphanages, but they're doing more harm than good.
Threadworm infection is common but it’s often asymptomatic. Ayaka Darkly/Flickr

Health check: the low-down on ‘worms’ and how to get rid of them

Intestinal worms (or helminths) are multicellular parasites that live inside the gut. When mature, they can generally be seen with the naked eye. In developing countries with poor sanitation, the most…
Islamic scholarship gave rise to some of the world’s earliest educational institutions such as the House of Wisdom in Baghdad. Wikimedia Commons/CPT photo

The trouble with Islam: learning is the traditional and best remedy

There is nothing in Islam that makes it dangerous or threatening to a modern Western way of life. However, those looking to incite violence and hatred are always capable of finding textual references in…
The new waterfront in Australian literature: Parramatta. Lina Hayes/Flickr

The new Australian literary frontier: writing Western Sydney

Despite boasting a population of 2 million people – more than South Australia, the Northern Territory, Tasmania and the ACT combined – Western Sydney has, to date, had little impact on the literary pulse…
Australia has changed from primarily being a destination for permanent settlers to having an increasing number of temporary arrivals. Ben Beiske/Flickr (modified)

Speaking with: Shanthi Robertson on the changing face of migration

Shanthi Robertson on the changing face of migration.
Immigration is a contentious topic in many parts of the world, and the debate in Australia has been predictably framed around asylum seekers, the burdens on taxpayers and the protection of local jobs…
The second major sporting event Australia is hosting this summer, cricket’s World Cup, begins on Saturday night. AAP/Paul Miller

Australia’s summer of sporting events – has it been worth it?

The cricket World Cup’s opening game, which pits Australia against England on Valentine’s Day, is the latest twist in a summer in which Australia has played host to two of the world’s biggest sporting…

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