Neolife 2015

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The Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts (SLSA) welcomes colleagues in the sciences, engineering, technology, computer science, medicine, the social sciences, the humanities, the arts, and independent scholars and artists. SLSA members share an interest in problems of science and representation, and in the cultural and social dimensions of science, technology, and medicine.


Perth Convention Bureau (PCB)PCB Logo

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Institute of Advance StudiesIAS logo

The Inaugural (Rest of the World) SLSA Conference

The University Club of Western Australia

Perth Western Australia

1-3 October 2015


To register:



Full Registration
Includes morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea daily and attendance to the Exhibition Openings $370.00 AUD

Student/Concession Registration
Includes morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea daily and attendance to the Exhibition Openings $310.00 AUD

Neolife; full of surprises.
From the odd to the mundane, new forms of life are emerging in labs, workshops and studios. With the promise of exploitation for health and wealth we are seeing life as it previously never existed, albeit smothered in hyperbole, rhetoric and speculation. How do cultures such as Indigenous Australia respond to Neolife? On what terms are countries like China, India, Singapore and Japan, who have a rapidly growing biotech industry embracing or rejecting Neolife? How different is it to the west? Neolife: The Rest of the World SLSA 2015 meeting in Perth, Western Australia will attempt to address these questions from a wide range of approaches.

SymbioticA presents the inaugural Rest of the World (RotW) SLSA conference in Perth, Western Australia from 1-3 October 2015. This will be the first time the conference, will be staged outside of Europe or the United States, presenting an excellent opportunity for SLSA members in Australia, Asia and New Zealand to take part in the conference.

Confirmed Keynotes include: Professor Carmen Lawrence, Professor Jill Milroy & Professor Yilin Cao.

2015 represents the 20th anniversary of the public outing of regenerative biology which ushered an ontological crisis and new perspectives into the ways living bodies have been related to.  The last twenty years also seen a shift in (or maybe a return of) the approach of scientists’ attempt to capture the public imagination; public engagement in forms of science on the display and as a spectacle. This meeting will try to get western and non-western perspectives in relation to life on display as well as life transformed into a raw material to be engineered.

The meeting is planned to take place at the beautiful Crawley campus of The University of Western Australia in Perth. SymbioticA will arrange a series of workshops and pre-meeting events, as practical and conceptual build up to the main event via the SymbioticA Lab which was established at UWA in 2000.

About the Keynotes:

Professor Jill Milroy

Professor Jill Milroy is a Palyku woman whose country is in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. She is Dean of the School of Indigenous Studies at the University of Western Australia and has more than 30 years experience in Indigenous higher education, which has included serving on a number of national advisory bodies including three terms of appointments on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Higher Education Advisory Council. In 2011 she was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in recognition of her services to Indigenous education.

Professor Carmen Lawrence

After training as a research psychologist at the University of Western Australia and lecturing in a number of Australian universities, Dr Lawrence entered politics in 1986, serving at both State and Federal levels for 21 years. She was at various times W.A Minister for Education and Aboriginal affairs and was the first woman Premier and Treasurer of a State government. She shifted to Federal politics in 1994 when she was elected as the Member for Fremantle and was appointed Minister for Health and Human Services and Minister assisting the Prime Minister on the Status of Women. She has held various portfolios in Opposition, including Indigenous Affairs, Environment, Industry and Innovation and was elected national President of the Labor Party in 2004. She retired from politics in 2007. She is now a Professorial Fellow at the University of Western Australia where she is working to establish a centre to research the forces driving significant social change in key areas of contemporary challenge as well as exploring our reactions to that change. The centre will also seek to expose for public discussion the processes most likely to achieve social change where that is a desired objective.

Professor Yilin Cao

Dr. Yilin Cao is a Professor of Plastic Surgery at Shanghai 9th People’s Hospital affiliated to Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine. He graduated from Shanghai Second Medical University with a MD degree in 1975 and with a PhD degree in 1991. He currently serves as Vice Dean of Shanghai 9th People’s Hospital, Chairman of Plastic Surgery Department, Directors of National Tissue Engineering Center of China and Shanghai Institute of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. In 1991, Dr. Cao was funded by American Plastic Surgery Education Foundation to go to United States for clinical training as a visiting Professor. In 1992, he joined Dr. Jay Vacanti’s Laboratory as a research fellow for tissue engineering research at Children Hospital, Harvard Medical School. His major contribution is the creation of cartilage in the shape of human ear in nude mouse, and thus he received James Barrett Brown Award in 1998 at the meeting of American Association of Plastic Surgeons. Dr. Cao later became Assistant Professor at University of Massachusetts, School of Medicine (UAMMS) to work with Dr. Charles Vacanti and has served as lab director, and contributed to tendon, cartilage and bone engineering. He was promoted as Associate Professor of UAMMS in 1996. Dr. Cao returned to China since 1997, established first tissue engineering center in Shanghai. This center has received total funding of 10 million US$ equivalent thus far. Later, he launched two national tissue engineering research projects, which were supported, by The Administration of Science and Technology of China and serves as national leader. His major contributions in this period are the tissue constructions of bone, cartilage, tendon and skin etc, in large animal models. Currently, his center has moved to clinical application of tissue-engineered bone with great success.

In 2005, under Chinese national government support, Dr. Cao established National Tissue Engineering in Shanghai. Dr. Cao has gained his international reputation in tissue engineering research and has given more than 30 invited speeches at various international conference. He currently serves as associate editor of Biomaterials, editorial board member of Tissue Engineering, Journal of Biomterial Research, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, International Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery. He serves as the Special World Congress Chair and President-elect of Asia-Pacific Chapter of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine International Society. Dr. Cao was also elected as the fellow of world society of Biomaterials. He has published 50 research papers in international academic journals and contributed chapters to several international textbooks.