2016 Conference Speakers

Keynote Speakers and Special Guests

Julian Burnside AO QC

Julian Burnside is a barrister based in Melbourne.  He specialises in commercial litigation.  He joined the Bar in 1976 and took silk in 1989.

He acted for the Ok Tedi natives against BHP, for Alan Bond in fraud trials, for Rose Porteous in numerous actions against Gina Rinehart, and for the Maritime Union of Australia in the 1998 waterfront dispute against Patrick Stevedores. He was Senior Counsel assisting the Australian Broadcasting Authority in the “Cash for Comment” inquiry and was senior counsel for Liberty Victoria in the Tampa litigation.

He is a former President of Liberty Victoria, and has acted pro bono in many human rights cases, in particular concerning the treatment of refugees.

He is passionately involved in the arts.  He collects contemporary paintings and sculptures and regularly commissions music.  He is Chair of Fortyfive Downstairs, a not for profit arts and performance venue in Flinders Lane, Melbourne, and Chair of Chamber Music Australia.

He is the author of a book of essays on language and etymology, Wordwatching (Scribe, 2004) and Watching Brief, (Scribe, 2007) a collection of his essays and speeches about the justice system and human rights.  He compiled a book of letters written by asylum seekers held in Australia’s detention camps.  The book, From Nothing to Zero was published in 2003 by Lonely Planet.  He also wrote Matilda and the Dragon a children’s book published by Allen & Unwin in 1991.

In 2004 he was elected as a Living National Treasure.  In 2009 he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia.

In 2014 he was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize.

He is married to artist Kate Durham.

(see also Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_Burnside)


Gideon Haigh

Gideon Haigh has been a journalist since 1984, contributed to more than 100 newspapers and magazines, and is a member of the Melbourne Press Club Hall of Fame.  Certain Admissions: A Beach, A Body and a Lifetime of Secrets (2015) was his thirty-first book.  His thirty-second, Stroke of Genius: Victor Trumper and the Shot that Changed Cricket, will be published next week by Penguin.


Rose Hiscock
Director, Science Gallery Melbourne

Rose Hiscock is the inaugural Director Science Gallery Melbourne, an innovative new gallery dedicated to the collision of art and science. Planned to open in 2018, Science Gallery Melbourne is a flagship engagement project of the University of Melbourne and once established, will be part of the Global Science Gallery Network – a network of eight Science Gallery locations developed in partnership with leading universities in urban centres including Dublin, London and Bangalore.

Prior to joining Science Gallery, Rose was Director of the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences (MAAS), Australia’s contemporary museum for excellence and innovation in applied arts and sciences. With an internationally revered collection of more than 500,000 objects, MAAS comprises the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney Observatory and the Museums Discovery Centre.

Rose’s career includes a period at the Australia Council, where she held the position Executive Director, Arts Development. Responsible for building Australian arts nationally and internationally, she was integrally involved in the development of the new Australian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale.

Rose’s museum credentials were honed at Museum Victoria where she was in charge of commercial and audience growth across Museum Victoria’s highly successful venues; Scienceworks, Melbourne Museum, The Royal Exhibition Building, IMAX Melbourne and the Immigration Museum.

Rose is committed to building a vibrant, balanced and accessible arts sector. Noting the gender gap in Directorships, she played an instrumental role in developing a mentoring program to nurture future female museum Directors. She is a Board member of Back to Back Theatre, Australia’s highly successful company with a full-time ensemble of actors considered to have an intellectual disability, and Chunky Move, one of Australia’s premier dance companies.


Dan Hunter
Foundation Dean, Swinburne Law School

Professor Dan Hunter is the founding dean of Swinburne Law School. He is an international expert in internet law, intellectual property and cognitive science models of law. He holds a PhD from Cambridge on the nature of legal reasoning, as well as computer science and law degrees from Monash University and a Master of Laws by research from the University of Melbourne.

He has taught at QUT Law School, the University of Melbourne Law School, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Cambridge University, Deakin University, and New York Law School, where he is currently a Distinguished Visiting Professor of Law.

Professor Hunter regularly publishes on the theory of intellectual property and on the intersection of computers and law. His most recent books have been The Oxford Introductions to U.S. Law: Intellectual Property  (OUP, 2012), Amateur Media (Routledge, 2012) and two books on gamification, The Gamification Toolkit (Wharton Digital, 2015) and For The Win (Wharton Digital, 2012) (the latter of which has been translated into Russian, Chinese, Korean, Spanish and Japanese).

His work has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation, the Joyce Foundation and the Australian Research Council. He has been a judge for the resolution of domain name disputes for the World Intellectual Property Organization and is the recipient of a Fulbright Postgraduate Fellowship, a Fulbright Distinguished Chair, a Smithsonian Fellowship, an American Council of Learned Societies Research Fellowship, a Herchel Smith Research Fellowship in Intellectual Property Law, and a Science Commons Fellowship.

His research is focused on cultural histories of intellectual property in the postwar period, including work on LEGO bricks, Barbie dolls, modernist furniture, and the social significance of luxury handbags.

Clare O’Dwyer
Head of Library Services – Hanoi & Saigon South, RMIT International University Vietnam

Clare O’Dwyer is the Head of Library Services at RMIT University Vietnam. The University is the Asian campus of RMIT University Melbourne.  Established in 2000, the University offers programs from Business and Communication to Design and  Engineering, and from undergraduate to postgraduate.  Appointed in early 2015 Clare was the first expat Irish-Australian Librarian to manage this library service that was previously exclusively staffed by Vietnamese librarians only.

Prior to joining RMIT University Vietnam, Clare was the National Librarian at the Fair Work Commission based in Melbourne.  This role managed the employment law library, records and the Richard Kirby Archive.  This provided an opportunity to combine her law librarianship skills with her Masters degree in Arts Management.

Clare has had a variety of roles in her career that have included being a Business Analyst for BHP, Business Analyst for Ernst & Young, a Law Librarian in both Victorian and Federal courts, a Business Librarian for the Dairy Industry and in the long ago past a barmaid at Collingwood football games.

Clare strongly believes that Librarians have transforming, enriched and sustainable global careers.