Nicola Bright: Te Ahu o Te Reo – The Health of the Māori Language

Ko tēnei te wiki o te reo Māori. Nā, ko te tikanga o tēnei wā (otirā mō te tau katoa) me whakanui tātou i tō tātou reo rangatiranga. Nā reira, e tika ana e matapaki ana tātou i ngā kaupapa reo Māori. Ko tētahi o ngā pātai nui, me pēhea te reo e ora ai i roto i ngā kura katoa o Aotearoa? “If the language is to survive as a vernacular for another generation, radical steps will have to be taken to give the language… Read more
Logo for Te Ahu o te Reo report

Louise Phillips: Giving voice to the young: survey shows people want under-18s involved in politics

Young people are largely excluded from consultation and contribution to government decision-making. Both Australia and New Zealand are signatories to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and are obliged to honour children’s rights to freely express their views in all matters affecting them. However, neither country has mandated mechanisms to ensure children’s views are heard within their civic institutions.… Read more
Teenager in uniform addressing a group at a symposium

Maria Temming: Machines are getting schooled on fairness

You’ve probably encountered at least one machine-learning algorithm today. These clever computer codes sort search engine results, weed spam e-mails from inboxes and optimize navigation routes in real time. People entrust these programs with increasingly complex — and sometimes life-changing — decisions, such as diagnosing diseases and predicting criminal activity. Machine-learning algorithms… Read more
Digital image of brainwaves going through a robot's mind

Kate Grayson: Addressing the gender gap in Australia’s intelligence community

Traditionally, the realm of intelligence-gathering and espionage has been associated with men. Perhaps we can thank Ian Fleming’s characterisation of James Bond for that. However, the recently released review of administration and expenditure (2015–16) by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security (PJCIS) paints a different picture and gives an insight into an area that’s rarely… Read more
Pile of badges with a red female symbol on a white background saying "Mind the Gap"

Briahna Joy Gray: The Question of Cultural Appropriation

The trouble with Elvis’s version of “Hound Dog” is not that it is bad. It’s that it doesn’t make any goddamn sense. Big Mama Thornton’s original 1952 version of the song is sleazy and defiant. In a bluesy growl, she tells off the low-down guy who keeps “snooping round her door.” It’s a declaration of independence by a woman who is sick and tired of having a “hound dog” of a man take her for granted. The… Read more
Cartoon of Elvis singing while pushing aside Big Mama Thornton

Joshua Forstenzer: Missing from the tuition fees debate: student well-being and the public benefits of higher education

As the summer comes to an end and a new academic year approaches, another wave of soon to be university students are eagerly awaiting the next stage in their educational journey. For many of these students, it will have been a summer of firsts: first time on holiday with their friends, first time preparing to move away from home, and the first time voting in a general election. This was an election that saw youth turnout reach… Read more
Students in Britain protest for free education

Reeves and Rodrigue: The century gap: Low economic mobility for black men, 150 years after the Civil War

he legacy of American racism is dominating the headlines again. One of the arguments used against the removal or relocation of Confederate symbols is that “it is simply part of our history”. This is not the case. The results of the enslavement, disenfranchisement and exclusion of black Americans remain visible and vivid in 21st century America. Take the economic gap between black and white Americans, which is… Read more
Black man wearing a business suit in a sea of white business people

Paul Constant: Hurricane Harvey and the Failure of the Free Market

Two days ago, libertarian-leaning Forbes blogger Tim Worstall published a post titled “Hurricane Harvey Is When We Need Price Gouging, Not Laws Against It.” I would link to the story, but Forbes seems to have pulled it after the post received tremendous blowback from people who were outraged by Worstall’s pro-price-gauging post. Luckily, because mistakes live forever on the internet, you can read a cache ofRead more

Sui Huang: Bland peer review needs a pinch of salt

Research funding agencies face a daunting task when deciding which proposed research project to fund. It takes a great deal of expertise to distinguish between what investor Warren Buffett once called the “three I’s”: innovators, imitators and idiots. The anonymous peer review system that has emerged as the universal and unquestioned tool for assessing research grant applications reliably eliminates… Read more
Dilbert and manager discussing peer review

Johnson and Maddox: Talk of same-sex marriage impinging on religious freedom is misconceived: here’s why

Conservative religious organisations and politicians have played a major role in preventing the introduction of same-sex marriage in Australia and hope to do so again. John Howard cited conservative religious views when he banned same-sex marriage. Labor’s fear of losing religious voters to the Liberals contributed to concessions to the religious right, and saw it oppose same-sex marriage until 2011. Even… Read more
Melbourne marriage equality rally, 2017