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Between Humans & Machines - 54th Annual Symposium of the Australian Academy of the Humanities

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Event description

Between Humans & Machines

Join us on 16 and 17 November in Melbourne for our 54th Annual Academy Symposium as we explore the possibilities and hazards of automation, and the complexities of human-machine relations.

Since the late eighteenth century, the changing ‘machinery question’ has continued to spark deep social divisions and to stimulate new fields of imaginative thinking, creative speculation, and social and cultural enquiry (including political economy, cybernetics, STS, AI ethics, critical data studies, and digital ethnography).

Recent advances in artificial intelligence have generated new interests, methods, problems, and capabilities across an array of humanities and creative arts disciplines. These have complicated conventional narratives of technological transformation, enabling a deeper understanding of the possibilities and hazards of automation, and the complexities of human-machine relations.

Our 54th Annual Academy Symposium will explore some of the most exciting work underway on these issues across the humanities with related institutions and industry fields, in Australia and elsewhere.

Topics will include:

  • Virtual autopsies and automated morgues,
  • The automation of cultural production and cultural taste,
  • Human accountability for the actions of machines,
  • The ‘explanatory imperative’
  • Questions of Indigenous data sovereignty
  • Digital human rights
Return to Symposium Website
Symposium Program

Note: online tickets are available for this event, onsite tickets are fully booked.

Event details

Symposium Convenors: Professor Jean Burgess FAHA and Professor Julian Thomas FAHA
Symposium Dates: 16-17 November 2023, Registration will commence at 8.30am Thursday 16 November and the Symposium will end on Friday 17 November at 2.30pm. There will be an informal social gathering after the Symposium, all welcome.
Venue: Kaleide RMIT Union Theatre 

Hancock Lecture: 
Dr Thao Phan, Monash University
Title: Artificial figures: gender-in-the-making in algorithmic culture
Lecture Date:
4.00pm, 16 November 2023
Venue: Kaleide RMIT Union Theatre 

Fellows Signing Ceremony and Annual Academy Dinner
Event Date:
5.45pm for the Signing Ceremony and 6.45pm for Dinner, 16 November 2023
Venue: State Library of Victoria 

Our Symposium is open to all – bringing together a large cross-section of Fellows, scholars, early-career researchers and representatives from government, education, peak bodies, industry, media and the community.

Diversity & equity at our events

SHAPE Futures EMCR First Annual Convention: Speaking Up and Leading Change

SHAPE Futures are holding their Annual Convention in Melbourne. SHAPE Futures is a free, early- and mid- career network for the humanities, creative arts and social sciences in Australia. 

At the 2023 convention, panellists will discuss the ARC Review, the University Accord and other policy processes currently in train, focussing on the impact of, and opportunities for, EMCRs to inform sectoral changes, and how, through advocacy networks like SHAPE Futures, EMCRs can contribute to ‘shaping’ the future of Higher Education in Australia.

  • Date: Wednesday, 15 November 2023
  • Time: 2pm –4pm (with drinks, canapes and networking to follow from 4pm –5pm)
  • Location: North Theatre, Old Arts Building, the University of Melbourne
  • Registration essential

100% of Humanitix booking fees associated with this event will go towards funding education projects for the world's most disadvantaged children to close the global education gap. 

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Refund policy

Cancellations before 6 November 2023 are fully refundable. Refunds for cancellations after this date are at the discretion of the Academy.