University of Sydney

Established in 1850, the University of Sydney was Australia’s first tertiary education institution. It is committed to maximising the potential of its students, teachers and researchers for the benefit of Australia and the wider world.

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John Oliver presents Last Week Tonight. Is he merely preaching to converted? Screenshot from Youtube

We’re laughing in an echo chamber: it’s time to rethink satire

We may be living in a golden age of satire, but comedy has always struggled to communicate across political divides. Much of today’s satire may be preaching to the choir rather than proselytising to those outside the echo chamber.
Spirits were high when the Socceroos qualified for the 2018 World Cup, but the team’s chances in Russia are slim. David Moir/AAP

Why soccer is falling behind footy and rugby in Australia

Interest in the sport is starting to wane as the Socceroos have struggled internationally and the A-League has failed to evolve.
The big global cities might be engines of growth but are also where the deepest troughs of poverty and injustice are found. Jorge CMS/Shutterstock

Aim for cities of all sizes to give everyone a fair go

The largest cities in Australia and the US are both the richest and the most likely to push out low-income earners. Having cities of all sizes will increase people's choices of where to live and work.
The Fair Work Ombudsman alleges that food-delivery platform Foodora underpaid three workers. Shutterstock

Why gig workers may be worse off after the Fair Work Ombudsman’s action against Foodora

That the Fair Work Ombudsman brought a case against Foodora suggests its workers are most likely to be classified as employees. This could dissuade other platforms from offering similar benefits.
Trade, Tourism and Investment Minister Steven Ciobo attended the recent AFL match in Shanghai, but the bigger picture is about reassuring China that Australia welcomes its investment. David Mariuz/AAP

Chinese investment in Australia falls as political debate hits confidence

Interviews with Chinese executives confirm the political debate about China is creating feelings of being unwelcome and apprehensive about investing in Australia.
The settings on traffic lights make pedestrians wait longer by giving higher priority to vehicle traffic. Abaconda Management Group/Wikimedia

How traffic signals favour cars and discourage walking

Everyone doesn't simply wait their turn at traffic lights. Signals are set up to enable a 'green wave' for cars and adjust to heavy traffic, making walkers wait longer no matter how many there are.
The death threat looms large over Indonesian youth as their rate of smoking is high. www.shutterstock.com

Protecting young Indonesian hearts from tobacco

Indonesia has the region's highest rate of smoking among youths – one in five between the ages of 13 and 15 smoke. What should the government should do to stop youth from smoking?
Ant colonies direct traffic flows of millions of individuals along the best routes – army ants even manage inbound and outbound lanes – but how? Geoff Gallice/Wikimedia

Nature’s traffic engineers have come up with many simple but effective solutions

Insects aren't known for having big brains, and slime moulds and fungi don't have any. So how do they solve challenges that test the ingenuity of human transport engineers?
Bernard Herrmann’s music for the final scene in Psycho fragments and breaks down, echoing the psychotic episode experienced by the character Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins). Graphics: Emil Jeyaratnam/The Conversation; Image: Still from 'Psycho' (1960)

The great movie scenes: Hitchcock’s Psycho and the power of jarring music

In this episode of Close-up, Bruce Isaacs contrasts the unsettling musical score from Hitchcock’s Psycho with Howard Shore’s score for Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring.
A stick insect in Borneo: variation and natural selection has resulted in insects with the astonishing ability to mimic features in their natural environment. Shutterstock

Guide to the classics: Darwin’s On the Origin of Species

In this age of the pseudo-factual, its more important than ever to acquaint ourselves with the foundations of the scientific tradition, such as Darwin's Origin of Species.

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