Last month, over 150 people from UNSW and the broader community gathered at the Roundhouse, UNSW Sydney, for the second MedConnect x Sci-Fi series. The collaboration between UNSW Medicine & Health and UNSW Science focused on the topic "Elevating health in the climate debate."

The event featured a panel discussion on the critical intersection of climate change and public health. It explored solutions for collective action from government, industry, and society, as well as the systemic changes and innovations needed to address the health risks associated with climate change.

The expert panel included Dr Georgia Behrens MD MScPH, Assistant Director, National Health, Sustainability and Climate Unit; Scientia Professor Guy Marks AO, physician and epidemiologist, Woolcock Institute of Medical Research and UNSW Medicine & Health; Professor Ben Newell, Director, Institute for Climate Risk and Response, UNSW Sydney; and Dr Chloe Watfern, research fellow, Black Dog Institute. Tegan Taylor, award-winning health and science reporter at the ABC, facilitated the discussion.

Dr Georgia Behrens, Scientia Professor Guy Marks, Dr Chloe Watfern, Professor Ben Newell and host, Tegan Taylor. Image: Provided

The conversation delved into the health impacts of rising air pollution, collective versus individual action, craftivism and more.  The audience was highly engaged, sharing how climate change makes them feel and asking thought provoking questions.

The Black Dog Institute, in close affiliation with UNSW Medicine & Health, provided valuable resources on climate-related feelings and encouraged guests to engage with an interactive art installation during the networking reception. This was the first time an activation of this kind was introduced at MedConnect, and it proved to be highly effective, interactional, and experimental.

Black Dog Institute Art Display: Image: Provided

For those who may have missed it, or would like to listen to the discussion again, the recording is now available for you to download, watch and share with your friends, family and colleagues.

An audio recording of the panel discussion and photo gallery is available below: