Accolades to Professor Julian Thomas, Advisory Committee Member, Dr Henning Trüper, Collaborating Scholar, and Professor Annie Clarke, forthcoming Visitor

Major grants have been awarded to two outstanding scholars associated with Rediscovering the Deep Human Past Program/Research Centre for Deep History.

Professor Julian Thomas, a member of the Centre’s Advisory Committee, received ARC funding to establish and lead the Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making and Society. Based at RMIT, this major new research centre will investigate how rapidly emerging decision-making technologies can be used safely and ethically. It brings together national and international experts from the humanities, and the social and technological sciences. Professor Thomas said the global research project would help ensure machine learning and decision-making technologies were used responsibly, ethically and inclusively. Noting that automated systems are changing our everyday life, he added, “We urgently need a much deeper understanding of the potential risks of the new technologies, and the best strategies for mitigating these risks”.

Dr Henning Trüper has been awarded a European Research Council Consolidator Grant, which provides funding for Henning and four postdoctoral research positions to undertake the project “Archipelagic Imperatives: Shipwreck and Lifesaving in European Societies since 1800”. Henning joined the Laureate team as a visitor early in 2019, leading a workshop on Claude Levi-Strauss and mentoring team members. The Archipelagic Imperatives project is using the historical painting by Danish realist painter, Michael Ancher, as its website image (see below).

In other good news, Annie Clarke, from Sydney University, was promoted to Professor. Annie is shortly joining the Program/Centre as a visitor. Annie is a leading figure both in Australia and internationally in the broad fields of community and contact archaeology, ethnographic collections research and critical heritage studies. Her research profile and interests both connects and adds to the research being undertaken by Ann McGrath and her team. Annie’s record of cross-disciplinary research and public engagement connects directly to the initiatives of the Laureate Program. Her current re-engagement with community-based archaeological research on Groote Eylandt intersects specifically with the research of Laura Rademaker, a post-doctoral fellow with the Program/Centre.

We extend congratulations to Julian, Henning and Annie on these outstanding achievements.