Welcome to show #49- the second show for 2023!! Show #49 will be on the 26th of April, with three brand spanking new talks including one alumnerd presenter. We will be talking about death sustainability, vaginas and more! Be there. Be square.  

Wednesday, 26 April 2023
Howler (7-11 Dawson Street, Brunswick)
Doors: 7 pm
Show: 7:30 pm
Tickets: $15 – Available now!!!

A Grave Matter: Analysing the Carbon Footprint of Body Disposal

Rachael Roberts

Join us while we tackle a grave topic and examine the impact of different post-mortem body disposal methods, from traditional burial to Viking send-offs to cremation to sci-fi-esque cryogenics using life cycle analysis to examine end of life body disposal options. We’ll bury ourselves in the details of each method’s carbon emissions, land use, water usage, and chemical pollution, to understand how they affect our environment. This talk will also dig into the dirt of alternative methods, such as natural burial and green cremation, to see if they’re pushing up daisies or growing in popularity.

BIO: As an engineer and circular economist, Rachael has made it her mission to transform the world’s trash into valuable resources, from composting food waste to recycling plastic into new products. She’s a true innovator, always looking for creative solutions to tackle the waste crisis and to help others choose the best environmentally-friendly options. Rachael is always up for a challenge when it comes to analysing the environmental impacts of our daily lives. From calculating the carbon footprint of a Four’n Twenty Pie to examining the life cycle of goon bags, there’s no sustainability puzzle too big (or too small) for Rachael to tackle. She’s a true trash connoisseur, with a passion for turning what others might consider garbage into something new and amazing.

Drones, Instagram, and swimming with sharks

Rebecca Olive

Swimmers and surfers have always known we share the ocean with sharks. Most of what we hear about big sharks like Great Whites, Bulls and Tigers has comes through media reporting after fatal bites or attacks of people using the ocean for leisure. These incidents also often lead to culls or the installation of nets that kill all kinds of animals. But drone footage of oceans on social media offers evidence of how often we are in encounter with sharks, and other critters, without noticing. My research suggests that drone footage is changing how people think about oceans as ecologies, and the kinds of expectations we should have about what swims with us.

BIO: Dr Rebecca Olive is a surfer, swimmer, and Senior Research Fellow at RMIT University, where she studies how sport and leisure shape our relationships to coasts and oceans. You can read about her work at www.movingoceans.com

Vulvas, Vaginas, and Mansplaining.

Jarrod McKenna

In a previous NerdNite talk, Dr Jarrod McKenna spoke all about fantastic phalluses and where to find them, so it’s only fair we talk about the other side of the genitalia coin, right? Well, in this talk, Dr McKenna will continue the deep dive into the weird and wonderful world of genital diversity across the animal kingdom, but this time focusing on females: Why do some species only have 1 ovary? Do all animals have clitorises? And what the hell is a pseudopenis? There will be photos, analogies, and the occasional mansplaining. But, hopefully, the mansplaining will be overshadowed by the amazing genital treasures of the natural world and you’ll come away knowing a thing or two about the female reproductive tract.

BIO: Dr Jarrod McKenna is a science communicator and, in a previous life, a reproductive biologist. Dr McKenna loves taking boring scientific ideas and concepts and making them fun and interesting – it just so happens genitals are quite a fun topic to begin with. Dr McKenna has presented on radio, podcasts, television, and written several articles all about the fascinating natural world to hopefully inspire the next generation of nerds of how amazing science can be!