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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Brisbane to host prestigious international symposium in 2016

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Saturday, June 13, 2015

    Brisbane to host prestigious international symposium in 2016

    Brisbane has been chosen to host the prestigious 6th McDonnell Academy International Symposium in September 2016, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced following a meeting at the Brookings Institution in Washington DC today.

    Ms Palaszczuk said the Symposium – hosted by the University of Queensland in partnership with the Washington University in St Louis - would enable Queensland to showcase significant achievements in the areas of science, innovation and the creative industries.

    “The University of Queensland will be well-positioned to host the 2016 Symposium,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

    “As one of Australia’s leading research and teaching institutions, The University of Queensland is a leader in research, commercialisation and translation and in knowledge leadership.

    “It is a great honour for our state to play host to the Symposium, which will bring some of the world’s best and brightest to Queensland.”

    The Symposium is expected to attract around 400 delegates to Brisbane next year, including university presidents, faculty members and outstanding graduate students – as well as corporate, government and non-government organisation representatives from around the world.

    The McDonnell International Scholars Academy, founded by the Washington University in St Louis in 2005, is an elite international network of research universities and scholars comprising 28 university partners, including The University of Queensland.

    Washington University in St Louis Chancellor Mark Wrighton was at today’s Brookings Institution meeting with the Premier. 

    Chancellor Wrighton said, “We are grateful to The University of Queensland for their commitment to the partnership with us and other institutions in the McDonnell International Scholars Academy.  I visited Brisbane and UQ earlier this year and found the visit for be of great quality and pleasure.”

    “I am personally looking forward to being in Brisbane with other higher education leaders and students from all around the world to stimulate more international collaboration in education and research to address some of the world’s most challenging problems, from energy and environment, to public health, to the issues surrounding how to provide water and nutritious food to food to a growing population,” Chancellor Wrighton said.

    The 2016 Symposium will be co-sponsored by The University of Queensland, with sessions to be held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre and at the UQ St Lucia Campus.

    “The Symposium provides an invaluable forum to explore the role of research universities in tackling significant global challenges in an uncertain future” said Professor Peter Høj, President and Vice-Chancellor of The University of Queensland.

    “The University of Queensland is pleased to be working with Washington University in St. Louis – one of our most engaged university partners – to host the 2016 Symposium.  We see close alignment of UQ’s vision of providing knowledge leadership for a better world with the broad objectives of the McDonnell International Symposium.”

    Attendees will come from Washington University in St Louis partner institutions in Ghana, Turkey, Thailand, China, Australia, Hungary, Brazil, Israel, Indonesia, India, Hong Kong, Chile, Korea, Taipei, Japan and the Netherlands.

    The McDonnell International Scholars Academy has convened a symposium every two years or so, providing a crucial forum for research universities to address global challenges such as energy and sustainability, public health population and ageing, and food and water.


    Washington University in St Louis – is an independent (private) university located in St Louis Missouri. It is counted among the world’s leading universities in teaching, research, patient care and services to society. Washington University in St Louis is ranked 32 in the Shanghai Jiao Tong global university rankings. Twenty-four Nobel laureates are affiliated with Washington University in St. Louis. 

    The McDonnell International Scholars Academy at the Washington University in St Louis, is an international network of research universities and scholars. The Academy has a mission of recruiting students from around the globe to pursue graduate degrees as McDonnell Academy Scholars at Washington University in St Louis. The Academy provides full tuition and stipend support to some of the most talented students in the world. 

    The Academy is focused and small, involved in a limited number of scholars and with 28 university partners – including the University of Queensland. The University of Queensland joined the Academy in 2011, and has been a very active and engaged partner.