Social Cohesion or Social Division: where next in Australia's Brave New World?

A message from the Associate Vice-Chancellor Queensland, Professor Jim Nyland:

The political debates over race, ethnicity, identity and belonging have permeated right through the responses, on a world scale, to mass migration, refugees across the globe, economic scarcity and poverty, climate change and environmental destruction and of course the devastation brought about by war, religious persecution and terrorism.  Australia’s population has virtually doubled since 1975 and our settled ways of thinking about many things – politics, religion, business, not-for-profit, and what it means to live together – is increasingly being challenged as disruption and upheaval continue to break upon us.  Rising inequality and what to do about it is the emerging conversation of our time.  The chasm of those who are able to hold ground and those who are falling behind is growing at a time when our cumulative affluence has never been greater.  Political disaffection and social division abound reflecting disengagement from civil discourse within a pluralist society - traditionally seen as so central to the great and continuing Australian project of social cohesion.

All of which makes 'Social Cohesion or Social Division: where next in Australia's Brave New World?' a critical and timely subject for discussion at the sixth annual Archbishop/Vice Chancellor and President Catholic Stakeholder Dinner and Panel Discussion event, scheduled to take place on Thursday 24 May from 6.30pm at the Hilton Hotel in Brisbane. When our society is less fractured, we can find more of the common ground that enables societies to advance. Leading figures in the worlds of education, faith and politics will provide us with some deeply thoughtful perspectives on where we are heading and how we might foster conditions of social cohesion. The discussion may leave us with more questions than answers - but asking the right questions helps us find the new approaches to make sense of it all.

Photo of 5th Annual Archbishop/Vice Chancellor and President Catholic Stakeholder dinner and panel discussion event.

The 5th Annual Archbishop/Vice Chancellor and President Catholic Stakeholder dinner and panel discussion event, Truth and Love in a time of Fear: Australia Up Close and Personal, held in 2017.

This year, Professor Hayden Ramsay, Professor of Catholic Philosophy, will steer our expert panel, comprising the Archbishop of Brisbane The Most Reverend Mark Coleridge, Australian Catholic University’s Vice Chancellor and President Professor Greg Craven AO, Father Frank Brennan SJ AO, CEO, Catholic Social Services Australia, Dr Lee-Anne Perry AM, Executive Director, Queensland Catholic Education Commission and Peta Credlin, Strategist and policy professional, columnist and SKY News anchor.  The evening will be held in the prestigious Grand Ballroom of the Hilton Hotel in Brisbane’s CBD to accommodate the 300 strong audience of senior professionals in attendance that see this annual gathering as the hottest ticket in town.  All proceeds from the event go towards ACU scholarships for disadvantaged students.  We hope you will join us for what will be a superb evening of great conversation and company, providing fresh insight into one of the great moral dilemmas of our time.

Photo of 5th Annual Archbishop/Vice Chancellor and President Catholic Stakeholder dinner and panel discussion event.

All staff are invited to attend, I look forward to seeing you there if you can come along. Tickets still available at early bird prices, to book visit the event web page.


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