Thomas is the Professor of Cognitive Development in the School of Psychology at the University of Queensland. Thomas studies the development of mental capacities in young children and in nonhuman animals to answer fundamental questions about the nature and evolution of the human mind. He has received honors and distinctions for both his research and teaching, including awards from the Australian Academy of Social Sciences, the Australian Psychological Society and the American Psychological Association. He has written a dozen book chapters and published more than 50 articles, including a 2007 paper on mental time travel that has been recognized as one of the most highly cited in the field of neuroscience and behaviour. His work has been covered in many distinguished international media outlets (such as Der Spiegel, Die Zeit, Discover Magazine, New Scientist, Science, and New York Times), and he is currently completing his first trade book: “The Gap - The science of what separates us from other animals”.
Bruce is an internationally recognised keynote speaker, author and business leader. He serves as the director of 6 companies and has written 3 best seller books. Managing his own businesses since his teens, by age 24 Bruce had established his own million-dollar network of businesses. He has an extended track record of working with a wide range of private and public organisations both in Australia and overseas, including BHP, Alcoa, Coca Cola and Coles. His topics ranges from relationship building, leadership, energy, change and much more. Bruce emanates energy and passion; most importantly he has a fantastic ability to convey valuable knowledge that elicits real change. He creates a tangible effect in people’s lives which changes the way they view the world on a professional and personal level.
Janet Wiles is the Professor of Complex and Intelligent Systems at the University of Queensland.
Janet is a complex systems scientist, interested in how organisms are put together, from genes to societies, and how this knowledge can be used in building robots. She recently completed a five-year project leading the Thinking Systems Project, supervising a cross-disciplinary team studying fundamental issues in how information is transmitted, received, processed and understood in biological and artificial systems. One notable outcome from Thinking Systems was the development of the iRat, a robot rat that can navigate, interact with real rats and develop language with other robots, recently featured on ABC’s Catalyst. Her research interests include complex systems biology, computational neuroscience, artificial intelligence, language and cognition.
Matthew is the Professor of Social Psychology in the School Psychology at the University of Queensland. Matthew’s primary research interest is in examining intragroup and intergroup relations in the context of identity threat. He examines questions such as: What makes collective apologies succeed and fail? What predicts whether criticisms and recommendations for change are met with open-mindedness as opposed to defensiveness? How do people manage the tension between individual and group will? And what are the benefits and pitfalls of assimilation versus multiculturalism? Matthew is an associate editor of Group Processes & Intergroup Relations.
Leigh is the Program Director of ilab Start-up Accelerator. Leigh has more than 15 years of experience in marketing and business development for IT companies in Argentina, Israel and Australia. She worked as Business Development and Marketing Manager for WizApp, an Israeli start-up company developing website design applications. She then took up a Marketing Manager role at KP Electronics in the north of Israel. In 2004, Leigh returned to Australia to work for Canon Australia as Market Development Manager where she led a number of successful initiatives to align Canon’s business products and services to major industry sectors within Australia and New Zealand. She is also the co-founder of Wizzyboard, a start-up developing technology for augmenting online games and toys to touchscreen devices.
Jimmy is the Professor of Plant Biotechnology in the School of Agriculture and Food Sciences at the University of Queensland. Jimmy founded the Plant Genetic Engineering Laboratory (PGEL) specialising in the fields of tropical and subtropical agricultural biotechnology. One of PGEL’s many research outcomes includes the production and field trial of the world’s first genetically modified pineapples which flowering period can be manipulated. This allows farmers to control harvest time. PGEL has also developed new technologies to confer protection against nematode infestation and pathogenic fungi in plants. Jimmy has eleven international patents in the field of Plant Biotechnology and is a founding member of two biotechnology companies (Coridon Ltd. and Origo Biotech). He is also a member of the Plant Molecular Biology and Biotechnology research group.