Is the next big idea a tram-ride away?

The next generation of La Trobe University thinkers will hop on board Bendigo's historic tramways to revive the "theory salons" from days of the Enlightenment and share ideas and connect.

This Friday 9 October graduate researchers will ride the rails through Bendigo's CBD, discussing the value of creativity and the imagination.

"Throughout history the best innovations, the greatest ideas, have come in part because someone has seen the world in a different way. Society relies on creative problem solving to move forward," said graduate researcher Melissa Kennedy.

"We might only be starting our careers as social researchers, but we want to play a part in solving the big issues of our time."

Ms Kennedy said the event was modelled on "theory salons," which were first used by 17th  and 18th century Enlightenment thinkers to make connections and share ideas.

"We're reviving that idea right here in Bendigo, encouraging researchers to come together for some great wine, food and discussion, drawing inspiration from the backdrop of our university city."

Ms Kennedy said the idea came out of a theory reading group at La Trobe University's Bendigo campus and grew with the support of an Intellectual Climate Fund grant from the Graduate Research School.

"So much of the time we're working alone on our projects. But we thought, 'there must be other researchers here and across the rest of the university who'd love to get together, talk about ideas and have a bit of fun.'"

The night will begin with guest speaker Peter Murphy, who is both Professor of Arts and Society and Head of Arts and Creative Media at James Cook University.

"We'll then break off into groups and debate some of the big issues currently facing the world. "

Media enquiries: Tom O'Callaghan, Media and Communications T 03 5444 7415, M 0408 900 469

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