Writing as Discovery: Investigating a Hidden Component of Method

Robert Delaunay, Rythme No.1

One-Day Cross-Disciplinary Symposium


When scientists and scholars compose papers, articles and monographs, is it really only a matter of “writing up” what they by then already know? Could it also be that in the attempt to articulate our knowledge new discoveries are made?

Our aim is to consider the possibility that, far from being simply ancillary, the act of writing constitutes a key plank in scientific and scholarly method.

Co-hosted by the A.N.U.’s Humanities Research Centre and the University of Canberra’s Centre for Creative and Cultural Research, this symposium brings together major thinkers from across the disciplines. Presentations will include panel discussions, a live interview and an open workshop.

All are invited to attend and contribute their own disciplinary and creative perspectives to the discussion.




9.00     Tea/coffee

9.10     Introduction to the Day

Associate Professor Paul Magee

9.30     Perspectives from the Sciences

Laureate Professor Peter C. Doherty
Professor Yvonne Paterson

11.00   Morning tea

11.30-12.30     Interview with a Social Scientist

Professor Alison Booth
Interviewed by Dr Lucy Neave

12.30-13.30     Lunch

13.30-15.30     Perspectives from the Humanities and Creative Arts

Professor Ross Gibson
Associate Professor Saskia Beudel
Professor Will Christie
Associate Professor Paul Magee
Dr Lucy Neave

15.30-16.00     Afternoon tea

16.00-17.00     Workshop and Plenary Discussion



  • Nobel Laureate in Physiology and National Trust Australian Living Treasure, Professor Peter Doherty
  • Author of over 35 U.S. patents for the treatment of cancer, Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, Microbiologist, Professor Yvonne Paterson
  • Filmmaker, Cultural Studies Scholar and Former Creative Director of the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Professor Ross Gibson
  • Labour Economist, former editor-in-chief of Labour Economics and novelist, Professor Alison Booth
  • Winner of the NSW Premier’s Biennial Prize for Literary Scholarship and Head of the Humanities Research Centre, Professor Will Christie
  • Non-fiction writer, novelist, former fellow at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society at Ludwig Maximillians University and 2018/2019 Environmental Humanities Fellow at the University of Edinburgh, Associate Professor Saskia Beudel
  • Novelist, creative writing researcher and former Fulbright scholar in Veterinary Science, Doctor Lucy Neave
  • Poet, critic and scholar in poetics, Associate Professor Paul Magee



Date & time

Fri 09 Nov 2018, 9am–5pm


Sir Roland Wilson Building


Associate Professor Paul Magee
+61 2 6125 4357


Updated:  30 October 2018/Responsible Officer:  Head, Centre/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications