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AQ: Australian Quarterly

AQ: Australian Quarterly 89.3 Jul-Sept 2018

For over 90 years AQ: Australian Quarterly has been packing its pages with the debates that have shaped Australia and the world, tackling the big topics in science, politics and society. Grounded in evidence, yet written in a style accessible to everyone, AQ is unique in Australia’s publishing landscape, pushing back against the trends of subjective truth and media spin. If it matters to Australia then it matters to AQ.

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Australian Institute of Policy and Science
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4 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
a word

Excuse me for a moment, I’d like to co-opt a recent Turnbull-ism: It’s an exciting time to be an Australian. I suspect that our PM and I would disagree on the reasons for this statement but hear me out. Yes, our political debate had become increasingly parlous over the last 20 years; yes, trust and faith in government have never been lower; yes, the overarching economic trend from the top-down continues to be tax-and-service-cuts-to-benefit-the-rich… But I’d like to inject a touch of optimism. Around the country the din of protest and genuine debate can be heard. It seems that no topic is publicly broached without the lens of inequality being considered; community and industry-pressure continue to frustrate antiquated energy policy; even some of our political parties are sticking their heads above the…

1 min.
notes for contributors

AQ welcomes submissions of articles and manuscripts on contemporary economic, political, social and philosophical issues, especially where scientific insights have a bearing and where the issues impact on Australian and global public life. All contributions are unpaid. Manuscripts should be original and have not been submitted or published elsewhere, although in negotiation with the Editor, revised prior publications or presentations may be included. Submissions may be subject to peer review. Word length is between 1000 and 3000 words. Longer and shorter lengths may be considered. Articles should be written and argued clearly so they can be easily read by an informed, but non-specialist, readership. A short biographical note of up to 50 words should accompany the work. The Editor welcomes accompanying images. Authors of published articles are required to assign…

11 min.
a nation in pain   can medicinal cannabis help?

With shards of light spreading out over the dark green vista of trees below, Caprio reached into the urn and took out a handful of ash. He leaned over and opened his fingers, eyes welling, as the ashes blew away in the strong westerly wind. “My dad was in excruciating back pain and all he wanted was some relief,” Caprio, 34, told me. “But when he asked his doctors for some medicinal cannabis to help with the pain, the doctors wouldn’t prescribe it. The doctors were like, ‘Have some opioids instead’.” Caprio’s father was living in Canada when the forklift he was operating flipped over, causing a back injury that prevented him from returning to work. “It was a downward spiral after that,” Caprio, who was only 13 at the time, said. “He…

19 min.
a new horizon:   australia in the global space race

“Inspired by the great prospects opening up before mankind as a result of man’s entry into outer space, …” From 1 July 2018 Australia will have its own national space agency, the ASA, with seed funding of $41 million in the first four years and further potential investment through a Space Industry Development Fund and major, national space-related projects on a quadrennial basis. Australia has been deeply involved in space research from the dawn of the space age, even before Sputnik 1 was launched, especially at the Weapons Research Establishment at Woomera. Australia has also previously had a space agency, the Australian Space Office (ASO), and a National Space Program (NSP), from 1987 to 1996. Current circumstances are fundamentally different to those 22 years ago when the ASO and NSP were terminated. There…

8 min.
glasses without dollar signs:   social business as a path to world peace

“Human beings are not born to work for anybody else,” Muhammad Yunus tells me, words tumbling out in a near stream-of-consciousness. “For millions of years that we were on the planet, we never worked for anybody,” he says, his eyes sparkling. “We are go-getters. We are farmers. We are hunters. We lived in caves and we found our own food, we didn’t send job applications.” Professor Muhammad Yunus is a man that genuinely cares about human beings and their experience of living. He believes we are all born entrepreneurs, not mere workers and certainly not just ‘consumers.’ He believes that our modern economic system misunderstands human nature—sells it short—and that this is the cause of many of the problems facing our economic system. And he believes that every person should have access…

12 min.
rural school principals   professional development and getting the 3rs correct

Principals of rural schools are integral parts of their communities. They know everyone. They work twenty-four hours a day in the “fish bowl” environment of a country town. They support our country families: those kind folks who protect Australia’s iconic bush environment, our waterways, and grow our food. Principals address a myriad of needs of all the families in the entire district. I briefly examine 5 of these needs in this paper: domestic violence, juvenile justice, mental health, issues relating to indigenous students and, of course, student learning. Principals often address these issues with only the resources within their community at their disposal. With all the complexities of the job, why would anyone be a school principal, let alone an isolated principal in the country? Rural school principals do an amazing…