While NUPSA ran an all-day live stream of this year’s TEDxSydney event here at Callaghan campus, PhD researcher in Education Susan Grimes was able to attend in person. Here are her thoughts from the day.


As a PhD student entering the last few months of the long, long journey that is postgraduate study, my arrival at TEDxSydney had all the feel of a hibernating bear exiting the cave into the bright spotlights of intellectual and physical stimulus overload. In short, what an amazing way to remind yourself that there are lots of wonderful, engaging, hopeful, enjoyable and exciting things happening, and that you can be a part of it!

The day was absolutely jam-packed. Fortunately, this event has been organised and run before and the importance of coffee has not escaped the organisers. So after a fortifying caffeine fix, it was into the fray.

The HUB had some interesting and interactive displays that included VR experiences, urban gardens, demonstrations of sustainability, and various ideas come to life. I had my energy levels analysed, was offered insects to eat, enjoyed the see-saw, and also had great vegan food. With over 5000 other people I listened to 18 speakers, watched 9 films produced for the event and enjoyed live performances from some fantastic local and international artists.

If you are thinking this sounds like a maelstrom of colour, noise and debate – you would be right.

The highlights for me were the poet Solli Raphael, Father Rod Bower, the beat box artist Tom Thum and the views of his throat as he performed (thanks to the marvels of a flexible endoscope), Magda Szubanski reflecting on courage, and the five audience members who offered ‘ideas’ for the future (my favourite was a booking system to connect international travellers with room in their luggage with Australians wanting to transport cookies and other foods from overseas for individuals who missed family cooking). I also laughed at David Capra and his dog Teena.

All these talks and performances are online at tedxsydney.com/live/


Canine collaborators: David Capra and Teena.

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