New South Wales Grant Round Recipients 2024

  • by National Office
  • 11 June, 2024
New South Wales Grant Round Recipients 2024

The Inspiring NSW Executive Committee is delighted to announce the 19 successful recipients of grants from Inspiring NSW for activity in 2024 National Science Week.

Our regional centres continue to embrace National Science Week and we are thrilled to support events across NSW, from Armidale in New England, Bellingen on the Mid North Coast, Newcastle and Cessnock in the Hunter, Wyangala in the Central West, Nowra and Illaroo in the Shoalhaven, Ulladulla and Mystery Bay in the Eurobodella, to Wagga Wagga and Wollongong. These include multiple opportunities for the public to either get involved in citizen science with field walks and iNaturalist training, interact with scientists and experts in research relevant to local landholders at community forums, or enjoy place-based programs that celebrate science, art and culture.

Acknowledgement of connection to Country and Culture of our First Nations’ peoples is embedded in many activities. ERTHWX24 will discuss indigenous perspectives on land stewardship, biodiversity conservation, and sustainable living practices in the Central West, while the Indigenous Science Experience @ Redfern showcases the richness of First Nation Australians’ knowledge in the centre of Sydney. The Sydney Institute of Marine Science (SIMS) will host a knowledge exchange workshop involving First Nations peoples, scientists, community members and students, looking at species conservation in Sydney Harbour and Gamay.

In suburban Sydney, diverse STEM activities range from robotics workshop in Campbelltown, to ‘brain camps’ and a celebration of astronomy at Ryde, with a special appearance by Indigenous astrophysicist and science communicator Kirsten Banks and a portable planetarium. Rhodes Science Fair 2024 hosts another fabulous day of STEM with robots, demonstrations and shows. A new series of STEM talks, Science in the Suburbs, heads to Macquarie Park and Parramatta for informal science in pub style events. The Westmead Medical Institute of Research opens its doors with a free seminar series, and at Western Sydney Parklands there is whole day of community STEM with stalls, shows, and maybe a roaming dinosaur, at Science in the Scrub. Back in the city, The Love Lab provides a fun speed dating matchmaking experiment using science, or scientifically backed research at least.

National Science Week is the time to celebrate our scientists and scientific achievement in NSW, foster an interest in science in the next generation, connect communities with research that matters to them, and feed the natural curiosity and wonder for the world in us all.  

These grants are in addition to the grants from the Commonwealth for 2024 National Science Week activity. They are listed on this page.


Grants for 2024 National Science Week activity in NSW


Armidale Art, Walks and a Library Science Show
UNE Discovery
The University of New England outreach team will host a series of innovative events for National Science Week. These will include ‘Adaptations: Threatened Species’, a regional art competition to highlight the extraordinary abilities of our Australian animals, birds and insects as they adapt to their ever-changing world due to human and climate factors; ‘Stayin’ Alive: Discovery Walks’ – a ranger, a botanist and an ecologist wander in the New England . . . and the community will be invited to join them; and late afternoon interactive science shows at Armidale’s main town library for families and adults.

Brain Camp: How to keep your brain healthy and happy
Rethinking the Brain Pty Ltd
Brain Camp will provide a free STEM-based neuroscience activity for young people aged 8-12 years and their parents at Ryde Library for 2024 National Science Week. At Brain Camp, kids learn what it is like to be real scientists exploring how the brain works and how to keep their brains healthy. Through innovative learning activities, they have the opportunity to play, discover, learn and create. Presented by cognitive neuroscientists Dr Mark Williams and Dr David Kaplan.

Empowering Coastal Communities: engaging citizen scientists in biodiversity surveys
Budawang Coast Atlas of Life Inc.
Budawang Coast Atlas of Life is a non-profit community network dedicated to the exploration and conservation of the natural environment on the NSW South Coast. For 2024 National Science Week they will provide a program of free citizen science activities to engage the whole community. These will include: a plant identification walk and iNaturalist training in Nowra; a Gondwana Coast Fossil Walk in partnership with Ulladulla Fossil Museum; and a Mystery Bay Bioblitz that will include plant/animal identification and iNaturalist training.

The CORRIDOR project  – convenors of the Orange Cowra Cabonne Science Hub 
ERTHWRX24 is an inaugural multi day community event involving a series of panel-talks, exhibitions, presentations, performances, installations and workshops presented during National Science Week 2024. The program will focus on ‘environmentalism’ delivered through the nexus of science, arts, culture, social, historical, geo-political and activist discourse. The program will bring together community, scientists, cultural knowledge holders, architects, ecologists, traditional medicine, global explorers and artists to ideate, create, share and explore humanity’s entangled relationship with the climate emergency. Panel topics will include indigenous perspectives on land stewardship; biodiversity conservation and sustainable living practices; global wildlife disease; soil management and health; renewable technologies and circular economies; land and water sustainability; ocean micro-plastic research; and bio-fuel technology.

Hunter Science Festival 2024
Hunter Innovation and Science Hub (HISH)
Dr Birutė Galdikas, the world’s foremost authority on orangutan biology and behaviour, is the special guest of Hunter Science Festival this year.  The festival will culminate in a day of family activity at the Newcastle Museum including hands-on opportunities to race mini solar electric vehicles or climb though the popular giant inflatable, the Poo Place, and special shows on the science of bush fires

Indigenous Science Experience @ Redfern
National Indigenous Science Education Program (NISEP)
The Indigenous Science Experience @ Redfern will showcase the richness of First Nation Australian’s knowledges, as well as the relevance of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to everyone in our community. Coordinated by the National Indigenous Science Education Program (NISEP), the event will bring together First Nations peoples, academics and outreach organisations to provide a range of immersive STEM activities for the broader community at the iconic Redfern Community Centre. Indigenous secondary students from NISEP partner schools  in Western Sydney and regional NSW will lead STEM engagement activities, building pride and growing role models for other Indigenous youth.

Integrating Traditional Knowledge and Marine Science: collaborative efforts for species conservation in Sydney Harbour and Gamay
Sydney Institute for Marine Science (SIMS)
For 2024 National Science Week SIMS will host a knowledge exchange workshop involving First Nations people, scientists, community members and local secondary and tertiary students. The theme of the event will be ‘catchment to coast’ and will build a narrative around species survival and the direct interventions being undertaken by SIMS and partners. These include the Sydney Seahorse Project, Operation Crayweed, Project Restore (on Posidonia seagrass) and projects looking at Sydney rock oysters and native corals.

Into the Wild: Immersive science programs in the field at Bundanon
Bundanon’s focus on landscape, education and the arts include a commitment to exploring local environmental issues and sharing knowledge of natural resources management in the Shoalhaven. Within the 1,000 hectares site there are 11 different vegetation communities with an abundance of flora and fauna species. For 2024 National Science Week Bundanon will host a family friendly program including a specially designed Ecology Discovery Map, walks and talks on the disappearing Broad-headed snake project with local scientists, and creative field workshops with artists in residence.

Rhodes Science Fair 2024
City of Canada Bay Council
Rhodes Science Fair is a free community event where families can learn, experience, and create together! Engage with hands-on stations and activities for all ages, including nature exploration, stargazing astronomers, AI robots, circuit building, and treasure hunting. Also, don’t miss captivating presentations like robot storytime, local ecosystem insights, liquid nitrogen experiments, and a hilarious archaeologist. This a must-attend event promotes lifelong learning and inspires a love for science through engaging activities and interactive exhibits.

RiverScienceFest will foster community engagement in a regional community with citizen science initiatives while creating an interactive space for all. Taking place on a Friday afternoon at Jarret Park in Bellingen, the event will feature keynote talks by local scientists and interactive citizen science STEM activities. These will be alongside musical performances and interactive activities by the river at sundown to encourage participation from the broader community and young people.

Robotics Show at Campbelltown
Young Innovators Australia
For 2024 National Science Week Young Innovators Australia (YIA) will host a community workshop in Campbelltown for children, young people and families, drawing on their experience running regular STEM learning workshops and working with STEM professionals. The day will include a hands-on workshop on how machines and robots work, talks about careers in robotics, and access to experts to ask questions. Robotics touches on nearly all aspects of STEM, and these workshops are an ideal way to introduce and inspire young people to experiment, learn and touch on a large variety of STEM topics.

Ryde to the Stars
City of Ryde Libraries
Presenting a mixture of talks, workshops and immersive experiences, the Ryde to the Stars program is designed to bring all ages and abilities together to experience new technologies, learn about the universe, and inspire the next generation of budding scientist stars. The flagship talk will be delivered by astrophysicist and proud Wiradjuri woman, Kirsten Banks, exploring the mysteries of the universe while honouring the rich knowledge of her ancestors. The program will include a visit by a mobile planetarium and an opportunity to experience outer space with virtual reality.

Scats, Scratches and Screams: the science and technologies helping to find and protect koalas
Cessnock City Council
In response to community questions about the impact of the NSW Government’s Koala Strategy in their regional area, Cessnock City Council will bring together a panel of experts for a community forum at Laguna Community Hall for National Science Week. Expert speakers will include scientists and researchers from the University of Newcastle, NSW Local Land Services, and NPWS, along with local landholders and representatives of Hunter Wildlife Rescue.

Science Comedy Inner Regional Shows
Future Science Talks
Future Science Comedy Edition provides scientists from all sectors and disciplines with training in comedy techniques to help them improve their presentation skills. The scientists then perform a 10-minute talk that is 80% science and 20% humour to a local audience. The highly successful formula will head to Armidale, Newcastle, Penrith, Port Macquarie, Wagga Wagga and Wollongong for National Science Week to connect regional audiences to the next generation of scientists and their fascinating research.

Science in the Scrub
Western Sydney Parklands
Science in Scrub is set to return in 2024, promising a jam-packed day of science in Western Sydney Parklands – Sydney’s biggest backyard. This year’s theme is Dinosaurs and Superpowers, celebrating our fascination with prehistoric creatures and the breakthroughs of cutting-edge research projects from the local and broader scientific community. Peer through solar telescopes, interact with robots, or learn about the Cumberland Plain Woodlands’ flora and fauna. Investigate the adaptations our Australian animals have inherited from their prehistoric ancestors with various live animal displays and meet scientists from the Australian National Maritime Museum, Australian Botanic Gardens, universities, and research centres. With over 30 stalls, a live stage show, performances, and science presentations all day, food trucks, and a roaming dinosaur, the day is a perfect family science experience.

Science in the Suburbs
Jack Foster
Science in the Suburbs is a new series of events that will aim to promote and encourage an interest in STEM to those in metropolitan Sydney, outside the traditional venues for science events in the CBD of Sydney. One event is being held at Macquarie Park, partnering with Macquarie University, and the other will be held at Parramatta, partnering with Western Sydney University. These events give universities a platform to showcase their research, scientists, and science communicators to the local community.

SciFest 2024
Virtual Excursions
SciFest 2024 is a celebration of science through a series of free online events open to all for National Science Week. The live virtual events are delivered in a webinar format to retain interactivity and enable two-way participation. Content is sourced from the network of Virtual Excursions Australia members, our leading science, environmental and research institutions.  The virtual events target a range of audiences through a series of engaging formats including lunchtime trivia, live science shows, panels on careers in STEM for students and afternoon science shows for the whole family. This festival of online learning provides an opportunity for you to connect with exciting science, experts and experiments without leaving your classroom or home. SciFest topics, dates and times will vary throughout the festival to provide variety and flexibility. There is something for everyone.

The Love Lab
Dr Naomi Koh Belic (she/her) and Shu Ezackial (they/them)
Finding love is hard, but The Love Lab is here to help. This speed dating match making experiment will be led by Dr Naomi Koh Belic (she/her) and Shu Ezackial (they/them) at The Library Bar. As you mingle, you’ll learn what your matches really think about the things that matter–like sex, climate change and wearing shoes inside the home. You’ll then hear what the research has to say… We’re not saying there’s a right answer, but there is a scientifically backed one. Come along, have your ideas challenged and hopefully find love.

WIMR Science Week Seminar Series
Westmead Institute for Medical Research
WIMR Science Week Seminar Series for National Science Week include presentations from researchers on their cutting-edge medical research, all  free and open to the general public. This year, Adjunct Professor Ruby Lin will delve into the realm of infectious diseases, while Associate Professor Kristina Kairaitis will explore the fascinating domain of sleep disorders, each sharing insights from their research in their respective fields. The events will be filmed to allow broader accessibility, allowing both attendees and those unable to attend to view the presentations at their convenience.

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