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Event date and time

Tuesday 1 May 2018
9.00am - 5.00pm


CSIRO Discovery Theatre, CSIRO Black Mountain
North-science Road, Acton ACT

Cutting Edge Science Symposium


  • Free

Dates and Times

Event date: May 2018

Tuesday 1 May 2018

CSIRO Discovery Theatre, CSIRO Black Mountain

9.00am - 5.00pm

North-science Road, Acton ACT
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About the symposium

This symposium will cover some of the most advanced global and national research on factors associated with the risk of emergence of infectious diseases.

The symposium will also explore how mitigating this risk requires careful consideration of interactions between key goals of the United Nations Agenda for Sustainable Development: human health, biodiversity conservation, climate change mitigation and food security.

Emerging infectious diseases such as Zika, Ebola, H1N1 and SARS have dramatic impacts on human health and global economies, with millions of deaths each year and billions of dollars spent to control outbreaks.

The vast majority of recent emerging infectious disease events were caused by zoonotic (animal) pathogens, most of which originated in wild species.

Preventing future zoonotic disease emergence is a cost-effective strategy to anticipate and prevent disease spread, but this requires modelling a number of interacting factors that influence disease emergence risk.

Ecological modelling is essential in this context, given the strong links between expansion of humans and livestock into biodiversity hotspots and the risk of disease emergence, especially in tropical countries.


Dr Paul Bertsch, Acting Director Land and Water Business Unit (CSIRO), will open the meeting, followed by a keynote address from Dr Peter Daszak, President of EcoHealth Alliance, USA. Dr Daszak's research has been instrumental in identifying and predicting the impact of emerging infectious diseases across the globe.

A series of presentations will explore more in-depth the various aspects related to disease emergence prediction and the relation with sustainable development, followed by open discussions with the audience.

Speakers for these presentations include: Dr Michelle Baker (CSIRO), Dr Simon Ferrier (CSIRO), Dr Cadhla Firth (University of Melbourne), Ms Cecile Godde (CSIRO), Dr Mario Herrero (CSIRO), Prof Raina MacIntyre (University of NSW), Dr Anna Okello (ACIAR), Dr Mark Stafford-Smith (CSIRO), Dr Carlos Zambrana-Torrelio (EcoHealth Alliance, USA).

A series of early career researcher speed talks and open discussion session will conclude the day.