2020 Conference

Melbourne Grammar School
27 – 29 March 2020

Our current age has been described as volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous. We seem to be preparing our young people for a future of unparalleled change and uncertainty.

The environmental crisis, artificial intelligence, advances in gene editing, rising wealth inequality, the evolution of social media, fake news, geopolitical tensions, challenges to democracy … The list can go on … and, amidst all of this, young people struggle with questions as ancient as human civilization – Who am I? and How shall I live? – and many struggle to find meaning and purpose in a world that can seem individualistic, competitive and shallow.

There are clearly larger questions here about schooling and life-long education – how best to equip students with the critical and emotional skills they will need to make good decisions and live fulfilling lives.

Religious Education and Philosophy can play a significant role in this broader educational landscape and this Conference will bring together international academics and successful classroom teachers to explore these important issues.


  • Justice in an Unequal World
    The Reverend Tim Costello AO (Former Chief Executive of World Vision Australia)
  • Teaching Ethics v. Preaching Ethics
    Dr Luke Russell (Lecturer in Moral Philosophy and Critical Thinking, University of Sydney)
  • For Goodness’ Sake: The Fundamentals of Human Flourishing
    Dr Felicity McCutcheon (Head of Teaching and Learning, Melbourne Grammar School)
  • AI and Ethics: Why all the Fuss?
    Professor Toby Walsh (Scientiua Professor of Artificial Intelligence at the University of New South Wales and Data61)
  • From Principle to Practice: The why, how and what of teaching ethics in high school
    Mark Case (Deputy Head, Oxley College, NSW)
  • Ethical Diversity at the Frontiers: The Case of Voluntary Assisted Dying
    Dr Rosalind McDougall (Senior Lecturer in Health Ethics, Melbourne School of Population and Global Health)
  • ‘Climate Justice Shall You Pursue’ – a rephrasing for our time!
    Rabbi Jonathan Keren-Black (Leo Baeck Centre, Melbourne)

Webinar: Climate Justice in RE
Lat Blaylock (National RE Adviser, UK)

Practical workshops led by experienced classroom teachers
Topics include: global citizenship, peace education, science and religion, post-truth politics, Ignatian Spirituality …