ICT For Life Sciences Forum


Breaking News

ICT for Life Sciences Forum now called Convergence Science Network

Convergence Science Network

After six years as the ICT for Life Sciences Forum, we have decided a little makeover was in order. From today, we will be known as the Convergence Science Network. Promoting convergence science has been our core focus over the past six years, so we thought it is time to raise the profile of convergence science and its importance to Victoria’s future with a clear and appropriate title. We hope you like, and remember it!




The Next Technology Wave: Biologically Inspired Engineering

Donald E. Ingber, M.D., Ph.D. Founding Director, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University Judah Folkman Professor of Vascular Biology, Harvard Medical School & Boston Children’s Hospital Professor of Bioengineering, Harvard School of Engineering & Applied Sciences.

The 2014 Graeme Clark Oration, delivered by Dr Donald Ingber, Founding Director of the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, was an example of science communication at its very best. An inspiring presentation, Dr Ingber discussed some of the incredible advances in science and technology that are shaping the future of medicine and healthcare. If you have any interest in science and technology for healthcare, you MUST watch that 2014 Graeme Clark Oration. An audience of 1,400 people were present to hear Dr Ingber deliver the Oration and were in awe of the advances that are taking place now, not in the near future.

Watch the video on you tube >

Forum supports Victorian technology entrepreneur challenge

The ICT for Life Sciences Forum is pleased to support an initiative to support young Victorian entrepreneurs develop their business and commercialisation skills with a focus on medical technology. An initiative of the Small Technology Cluster and supported by the Victorian Government, the MedTech’s Got Talent challenge aims to develop a more entrepreneurial culture which is driven by promising young entrepreneurs. The challenge is open to Victorian undergraduate, Masters, PhD, post-docs and recent graduates (within 5 years) with prizes of $20,000 vouchers and other support available for challenge winners. Applications are now being accepted and close on 22nd October 2013. For details about this exciting initiative, please visit the challenge website here. You are encouraged to tell friends, colleagues and family about this opportunity to support Victoria’s future entrepreneurial talent. The Forum is proud to be a Marketing and Media Partner of the MedTech’s Got Talent challenge.

ICT Highlights


Emeritus Professor Emeritus Alan Trounson, Monash University

In 2004, California overwhelmingly passed Proposition 71 to raise US$3B to establish a stem cell agency to drive research in California in stem cell biology focussed on turning discoveries into cures and clinical outcomes. Alan Trounson was appointed the President of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) in 2007 to manage the research funding. In view of the success of CIRM, Prof. Trounson’s talk will discuss the initiative in detail and implications for Australia’s research environment.


Never Say Never – The Graeme Clark Story

A new video, launched at this year’s Graeme Clark Oration, outlines the remarkable story of Graeme Clark as he battles against the odds to achieve his goal.

Graeme Clark was inspired by the deafness of his father to pursue a life of inquiry that would see him lead the development of the world’s first multi-channel cochlear implant, or Bionic Ear. Today, the device has been implanted in over 250,000 patients around the world, bringing sound to many of them for the first time and touching the lives of many family, friends and colleagues around them, perhaps in the millions. For the first time, a film biography is now available that tells the remarkable personal story of Graeme Clark’s quest to build a bionic ear.


This production was only made possible through the generous financial support of The Cochlear Foundation, the Melbourne School of Engineering (The University of Melbourne), NICTA and the ICT for Life Sciences Forum. Click the link here to view this remarkable story, now available with closed captioning, enabling subtitles in over 40 languages. WATCH VIDEO If you would like to receive a free a copy of the DVD, please click here to request your copy.

ICT and Life Sciences Convergence in Melbourne Publication

The ICT for Life Sciences Forum is pleased to make available online a booklet it produced last year – Applying ICT to the life sciences challenges of the 21st Century – which explores how ICT and life sciences are converging in Victoria in many areas from bionics to immunology; from motion sensing to cancer detection.Melbourne’s life sciences community has helped make the world a healthier place. Our contributions include: the world’s first drug for a mental illness; the bionic ear; identifying the killer of millions of babies; commercialising the first vaccine against a cancer; the first anti-flu drug; and fundamental immunology discoveries that have underpinned global research. In the 21st Century we are digging still deeper into the complexity of life. We’re building on past discoveries to build a bionic eye; create and interact with virtual viruses; redefine cancer diagnosis; understand the immune system; and make hearing aids much more accessible.We’re building bridges with physicists, engineers, mathematicians and computer scientists. Information and communications technology (ICT) is now central to managing and interpreting the results of life sciences research. ICT is enabling life scientists to tackle deeper and more complex questions and to interpret millions or billions of results. It’s allowing us to model real-life—from a polio virus to the fate of immune cells. It’s allowing us to explore complete living systems. Download the booklet [pdf 2.9Mb]

Professor Graeme Clark AC receives prestigious US award

Australia’s bionic ear pioneer, Laureate Professor Graeme Clark AC, today was announced as a recipient of the prestigious Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award for contributions that have improved the clinical treatment of patients. Professor Clark was awarded the prize for the development of the modern cochlear implant — a device that bestows hearing to individuals with profound deafness. Professor Clark will accept the award at a ceremony in New York on 20 September. Visit The Lasker Foundation website to learn more about the awards, view a video featuring the award recipients, and read Professor Clark’s essay that appears in October 2013 issue of Nature Medicine. Other Australians who have been recognised by The Lasker Awards include Sir McFarlane Burnett (1952), Professor Don Metcalf (1993), Professor Barry Marshall (1995) and Professor Elizabeth Blackburn (2006).

Watch us on YouTube

Watch all our videos on the Forum channel, click on the link below.