View presentations made at business and community events, and conferences. Presentations from the HRF Centre's functions are listed under the Events tab.

  • 25 ways to spot an expert revealed at New Professors Talk

    Wednesday, 18 October, 2017

    Will-Rifkin-talk-low-res

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    Director of the Hunter Research Foundation (HRF) Centre and Chair in Applied Regional Economics, Professor Will Rifkin, outlined 25 ways to spot an expert. That was part of his recently delivered New Professors Talk exploring breakdowns in communication between experts and non-experts.

    Professor Rifkin described actions and behaviours that ‘push our buttons’ and tell us that we ‘should’ treat someone as an expert.

    One can avoid these pitfalls, he explained, to get expert and non-expert decision-makers in the Hunter ‘onto the same page’.

    “When you are trying to get people from different parties to interact, communicate and understand each other, create something that has a common meaning for them,” he stated. “A map will mean something to a geographer, something else to somebody who lives in the region, and something else to somebody who is new to the region. But it will have very much a common meaning, as well.”

    He proposed that the HRF Centre can create such ‘boundary objects’ to enable people to have conversations about common concerns where they each bring their own insight from knowledge or experience.

    Professor Rifkin outlined his experiences over the past five years when he oversaw a $5-million social science research portfolio. That was funded by the coal-seam gas industry and the University of Queensland.

    “We sought to develop a boundary object that people from government, industry and community would find meaningful and revealing. That was a small set of indicators characterising changes occurring in the region before, during, and after a surge in onshore natural gas development.”

    The research produced the Boomtown Toolkit . That method was employed to create an annual report on trends in socioeconomic indicators measured over a 15-year period for a set of towns in the Darling Downs. See the data and analysis at – https://boomtown-indicators.org .

    “Even just a single indicator – the rent on a three-bedroom house over a 15-year period – helps you to understand cause and effect relationships. This small set of indicators can be the beginning of a sensible, evidence-based conversation within a community about what the needs and opportunities are.”

    He proposed producing Hunter region indicators, identifying data at the town level rather than merely the regional level. The indicators would be determined by asking community members, local businesses and industry, and government to prioritise a small set of indicators that would be meaningful for towns in the region.

    If you missed Professor Rifkin’s presentation and would like to hear more about his research, visit http://www.hrf.com.au/news-events/events

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  • Innovation in regional manufacturing

    Tuesday, 1 September, 2015

    Aust-Regional-Development-Conference-2015

    HRF researcher Anthea Bill presented on lessons learned from HRF's Manufacturing our Future research at the Australian Regional Development Conference, held in Albury in August 2015. View Anthea's presentation or download her research paper

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  • Future of Jobs in the Hunter

    Dr Brent Jenkins
    Thursday, 18 June, 2015

    HRF CEO, Dr Brent Jenkins was guest speaker at the Maitland Business Chamber luncheon on 18 June 2015 and examined the Future of Jobs in the Hunter Region. Contact us for a copy of the presentation

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  • We Need to Talk About the Hunter: Creating a vision for our Region

    Brent Jenkins
    Tuesday, 14 October, 2014

    HRF CEO Dr Brent Jenkins was the guest speaker at the Newcastle Business Club.

    The Hunter is facing new economic, social, environmental and political challenges and we must adapt or face decline. If we collaborate under a shared vision we will be successful.

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  • Regional Manufacturing Research Project

    Jenny Williams
    Tuesday, 12 August, 2014

    Presentation by HRF Senior Research Fellow Jenny Williams to ‘Let’s Talk Tomago’ Hub.

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