x = independently organized TED event

Theme: Ideas to Change the World

This event occurred on
August 10, 2013
10:00am - 4:00pm AEST
(UTC +10hrs)
Brisbane, QLD

We will be inspired by amazing people who despite obstacles to their ideas, they have made change possible through sustained determination and positive action. Their ideas have the power to change the world.

TEDxQUT aims to inspire and engage the community around ideas to change the world. Our vision is to provide a platform for the propagation of great ideas, storytelling, creativity and innovation that inspires our community to take part in the conversation and be part of solutions to make a positive change in our world.Ideas that lead to conversation. Conversation that leads to collaboration. Collaboration that leads to action.

We are looking forward to Jack Andraka being part of this event inspiring us with his work in pancreatic cancer detection but also his enthusiasm for sharing his ideas and making a difference to the world.

The Science and Engineering Centre
2 George St
Brisbane, QLD, 4000
Event type:
University (What is this?)
See more ­T­E­Dx­Q­U­T events


Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.

Jack Andraka

At the age of 15 Jack is an inspiration to our future scientists, techonologists, engineers and mathematicians. In his determination to find a cure for pancreatic cancer, he developed an early detection test that has the potential to save many lives. The test costs three cents,  takes five minutes, and appears to have almost 100% accuracy, which could potentially detect pancreatic cancer in its early stages, when a person has a much better prognosis. Even better, Jack thinks the test could potentially be used to detect ovarian and lung cancer too. By switching a protein the test reacts to, it could be used to detect diseases as varied as heart disease and HIV/AIDS. Jack received the Intel International Science Fair award of $75,000, and presented at TED2013.

Joel Fernandes

Joel Fernandes is a Mechanical Engineering student, who is currently in his fourth (and final) year at QUT. Joel has a strong passion for social and community development, and is heavily involved in on campus student groups, including the QUT College of Excellence and the student run Mechanical Engineering Social Society. He has been involved in both amateur stand-up comedy and public speaking, and is looking forward to presenting at TEDXQUT, and having the opportunity to meet a new generation of innovators and leaders.

Rachel Smith

Named by The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation as an ‘Emerging International Talent’, described by News Limited as ’One of Australia’s brightest thinkers on the perpetual challenge of urban planning’ and shortlisted as a 2012 TED Global Fellow Rachel Smith is one of Australia’s leading active/sustainable transport planners and urban thinkers. Rachel is a Principal Transport Planner at AECOM, part of the international mobile think-tank the BMW Guggenheim Lab, co-creator of Brisbane’s Lazy Sunday Cycle and a blogger at ThisBigCity in London.

Emily Haigh

Emily is the Co-founder and Director of Impact Leaders, a youth-led social enterprise which aims to help companies generate new sources of profit or growth via social impact initiatives. A marketing strategist with solid experience in stakeholder engagement, business model development and brand management. Emily has worked with some of Australia’s leading brands and is also a senior committee member of ADMA’s national marketing body, 30Below. Emily has qualifications in Business Management and International Business (including French and Norwegian) and has experience in strategy consulting for a number of start-up to mid-sized organisations across a range of industries. Emily has a comprehensive strategy acumen and strong skills in project implementation, striving to consistently look to instigate innovation by keeping up to date with international best practice.

Robert Perrons

Prior to joining the Queensland University of Technology as an Associate Professor of Technology Management and Strategy in 2011, Rob worked in a wide variety of roles and locations for Shell International’s Exploration & Production division. He started his career in Shell’s Strategy & Economics team in 1997, and then worked for several years as a production engineer in the company’s overseas operations (offshore and onshore). He then left for three years to work as an Industrial Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge, but re-joined Shell again in 2004 to become the company’s Executive Coordinator of R&D. Rob has a B.Eng. in mechanical engineering from McMaster University in Canada, a Master’s degree in Technology & Policy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a PhD in engineering from the University of Cambridge, where he was a Gates Cambridge Scholar. He is a Fellow of both Engineers Australia and the UK’s Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

Fred Watson

Fred Watson has been Astronomer-in-Charge of the Australian Astronomical Observatory since 1995, but is best known for his radio and TV broadcasts, books, and other outreach programmes. He is a musician, too, with both a science-themed CD and an award-winning symphony libretto to his name. Fred was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 2010. He has an asteroid named after him (5691 Fredwatson), but says that if it hits the Earth, it won’t be his fault.

Ruben Meerman

Ruben Meerman is a reporter on ABC television's Catalyst program and Play School's first ever ‘resident scientist’. Young audiences know him as the ABC's Surfing Scientist through his books and television science demonstrations. Ruben’s scientific career began as a physicist producing optical coatings for industrial, medical and military lasers. He eventually found his true calling in schools and kindergartens where he brings science to life for children. He is passionate about literacy, numeracy, science education and public schools of which he is a proud product… and (safe) explosions!

Andrew Sorensen

Andrew Sorensen is an artist-programmer, whose interests lie at the intersection of computer science and creative practice. Andrew is well known for creating the programming languages that he uses in live performance to generate improvised audiovisual theatre. Andrew has performed around the world, and is the author of the Impromptu and Extempore programming language environments.

Paul Seymour

Paul Seymour is the Co-Founder of One Week Job Australia – An inspiring project that saw him work 52 Jobs in 52 Weeks around Australia throughout 2012 to discover his passions in life. Paul worked as a Beef Farmer, Journalist, Basketball Coach, Producer, Landscaper, Charity Worker, Band Manager, Social Worker, Photography Assistant, Hairdresser, High School and Primary School Teacher, Toilet Cleaner, Event Manager, Cook, Stage Hand for the Foo Fighters, Youth Worker and even a Chocolate Maker, just to name a few.…and to think he only ever completed 1 day of University!

Lubi Thomas

As Senior Curator-Digital Media at QUT Brisbane, Lubi Thomas has extensive experience in the development and delivery of digital media exhibitions and associate public and educational programs. Lubi curates across two major location-based programs - the creative industries precinct & the Cube, with her curatorial scope traversing the digital arts landscape and STEM. She works locally, nationally and internationally on projects and consultancies. Lubi also developed the ever-growing curatorial internship program at QUT, focused on mentoring the next generation of digital media curators.

Peter Corke

Professor Peter Corke is the Research Theme Leader for Intelligent Environments at the Institute for Future Environments and a lecturer in the Science and Engineering Faculty at QUT. Peter is an international expert on robotics and has spent much of the past 15 years developing robotic systems and sensor networks, such as very large robotic systems and autonomous trucks for mining operations, small flying robots, and underwater robots for environmental monitoring. Before joining QUT in 2010, Peter was a Senior Principal Research Scientist at CSIRO, where he founded the Autonomous Systems Laboratory, a 50-person team undertaking research in mining, ground, aerial and underwater robotics, as well as sensor networks. He subsequently led a major cross-organizational “capability platform” in wireless sensor networks.

Janelle Kerrisk

Janelle is the Queensland and Northern Territory President of the not for profit organisation, National Association of Women in Construction as well as a Partner in one of the largest specialist Construction and Infrastructure practices in Queensland.She sits in a small 17.1% of women equity partners in Australia and an even smaller number that work exclusively in the construction industry.

Jane Andraka

A practicing anaesthetist Jane says in their home they have created an environment that values ideas. Encouraging her sons to follow their passion has led them to build levels of knowledge in their areas of interest.

Excerpt from "Traces"

This dance piece looks at the idea of ‘emotional residue’, the belief that people’s emotions leave traces in the physical environment, which can later influence others or be sensed by others. Choreography: Lisa Wilson (QUT Alumnus). Dancers: Asher Bowen Saunders and Matthew Nguyen (QUT Students).

Dominic Kauter

Dominic is a research student and sessional academic at the QUT business school, currently exploring the importation of wines and ciders, and how small business owners leverage their networks and language skills to remain competitive in niche markets. He is also an active member in the QUT College of Excellence, and is enthusiastic about education, leadership, anything Evernote related, and the art of the traditional wet shave. At the age of 12, Dominic relocated to Switzerland and developed a passion for international affairs and learning about other cultures. Following his return, he studied International Business and French at QUT. In his spare time, he enjoys reading the McKinsey Quarterly, donating at the Red Cross Blood Service, and connecting with other bright minds.

Organizing team


Brisbane, Australia
  • Novella Moncrieff
    Communications Director
  • Helen Todd
    Marketing Assistant and Student Engagement
  • Sue Sweet
    Partnerships Coordinator
  • Sara Sheather
    Marketing and Promotions Coordinator