Ideas and Society

The Ideas and Society program is a series of debates and public lectures convened by Professor Robert Manne that consider critical questions of the times. The program brings some of Australia's leading thinkers and public figures to the university. It aims to deepen the understanding of these critical issues and enlivens intellectual life.

Events are streamed live on the day.

What's next for Journalism?

Emeritus Professor Robert Manne and guests explore the future of journalism.

Australian Futures Project Forum

Emeritus Professor Robert Manne co-hosts a forum with the Australian Futures Project that explores enabling business leaders to drive change for a flourishing Australian future.

The Future of Australian Manufacturing

Emeritus Professor Robert Manne and guests explore the future of manufacturing in Australia.


Professor Raimond Gaita and author Alex Miller come together for a conversation about Mr Miller's remarkable award‐winning novels set in what he calls the Stone Country

In Search of Lucidity

Professor Robert Manne and Professor Raimond Gaita meet for an Ideas and Society event in the midst of the Bendigo Writers Festival

Our Nation's War

Joan Beaumont in discussion with Ideas and Society Convenor Professor Robert Manne about the centenary of the First World War.

Racism in Australia

Race Discrimination Commissioner Dr Tim Soutphommasane and Robert Manne in conversation on amendments to the Race Discrimination Act.

Communicating science

Professor Adrienne E Clarke, Robyn Williams, Elizabeth Finkel and Robert Manne discuss the challenges of communicating science to the public.

Sport has the power to change the world

Mick Malthouse, Russell Hoye, Margot Foster and Robert Manne debate sport's power to make change.

Is Melbourne still the intellectual capital of Australia?

Watch Melbourne's intellectual heavy-hitters fight for the city's reputation at this free panel discussion at Melbourne Now.

What will the Abbott government do?

Panellists explore the economy, climate change, and asylum seekers.

The Personal and the Political

with Bob Brown, Dennis Altman and Robert Manne

Sex, Desire and Nature in Australian Fiction

Hear from Carrie Tiffany and Kerryn Goldsworthy

Global Warming: Do the math

Hear from the USA’s most important climate change writer and activist, Bill McKibben.

Julian Assange and Wikileaks | Philosophy, Politics, Plight

Greg Barns, Julian Burnside AO QC, Robert Manne, and Mary Kostakidis (Chair)

The Science and Politics of Climate Change

A discussion on climate change between Prof. David Karoly and Prof. Robert Manne

Can We Feed 9 BILLION in 2050?

Panel: Tim Costello, Elizabeth Finkel, Philip Keane, and Snow Barlow

Big FAT Ideas

BFI-tile-thumb2Focused, Ambitious and Transformative ideas - The latest series is online now.