Networking, science communications, public engagement and advocacy for convergence science



Our Partners

The Convergence Science Network is an initiative supported by leaders in science research and recognised innovation companies as well as pre-eminent academics and industry leaders.

Melbourne School of Engineering

The Melbourne School of Engineering (MSE) at the University of Melbourne has a well established international reputation for its research and teaching, as well as engagement with its community at large. The School boasts an incredibly talented pool of people that thrive on delivering outstanding research and education, and attracts some of the best and brightest students from around the globe. It is one of the largest providers of PhD education in the engineering and IT space in Australia, with well over 500 PhD students in training.


MSE is recognised for excellence in engineering and IT as may be gleaned from its position in world rankings such as published by The Times Higher Education. MSE’s research activities are focussed to benefit society in areas of global importance – biomedical engineering, information and communications, materials and sustainability. In order to tackle some of the global challenges in a meaningful way, MSE collaborates with leading national and international industry partners, medical research institutes and governmental agencies to construct meaningful partnerships that can deliver impact.




The Bionics Institute

The Bionics Institute is an independent, not-for-profit medical research organisation specialising in the field of medical bionics. Medical Bionics is a multidisciplinary field of research combining bio(logy) and (electro)nics in order to develop implantable devices designed to provide sensory or motor function following damage to neural or muscle tissue.  These devices have the potential to offer solutions to a wide range of debilitating conditions where other treatments are either unavailable or have been unsuccessful.


Based in Melbourne, the Institute has an international reputation for scientific rigour and research excellence. Bionic ear (cochlear implant) research began in the late 1960s at The University of Melbourne and the Bionic Ear Institute was established in 1986 by Professor Graeme Clark to ensure that research and development of this pioneering device continued.


In June 2011, under the directorship of Professor Rob Shepherd, we changed our name to the Bionics Institute to reflect fully the breadth of our research in three key areas:


Bionic Hearing. This research program aims to improve the performance of the cochlear implant and hearing aids, and enable their application to many more adults and children with hearing impairment. Specific projects include: research to enhance the perception of music and speech in noise; the development of techniques to promote the survival of the hearing nerve which slowly degenerates with deafness; and understanding how the brain responds to the long-term electrical stimulation provided by cochlear implants.


Bionic Vision. As part of the Bionic Vision Australia consortium of research institutions, we are developing a bionic eye to provide sight and independence to people with degenerative and genetic eye diseases. We are using our expertise in perception and engineering, as well as our experience in safety and biocompatibility studies, to establish safe surgical procedures and effective electrical stimulation strategies for the prototype bionic eye. The first clinical trials of this device are scheduled for 2013.


Neurobionics. The aim of this research is to develop implantable devices to detect, predict, and suppress abnormal brain activity. Over the next 5 years, we aim to develop a medical bionics platform – a flexible implantable device that can be used to treat a wide range of intractable conditions by tailoring the device to suit each application. These applications include drug-resistant epilepsy, motor disorders (e.g., Parkinson’s disease and essential tremor), and severe psychiatric disorders (e.g., obsessive-compulsive disorders).


The Institute focuses on the clinical applications of its innovative technology, as well as strong commercial outcomes that benefit people from all walks of life. We’re constantly seeking for new ways to improve medical bionics devices, and strengthen the Australian economy through innovation and training the next generation of researchers.


The Institute is accredited by the NHMRC as an administering institution and is formally affiliated with the University of Melbourne.





Phillips Ormonde Fitzpatrick

Phillips Ormonde Fitzpatrick (POF) is a specialist intellectual property (IP) firm advising technology companies at all stages of product development, from early stage development through to utilisation and enforcement.  We provide a complete suite of IP services from drafting patent applications and pursuing patent monopoly rights, to patentability and freedom to operate searching, IP auditing, patent litigation and agreements.

As one of the few Australian businesses that solely focuses on IP, our clients have access to a diverse team of attorneys with technical qualifications and experience ranging from defence electronics and ICT, to molecular and cell biology, physical sciences, chemistry and mining. Our clients include leading multi-national corporations, universities and research organisations, as well as small to medium enterprises, clinicians and start-ups.


For more information about the services we offer to clients, visit





RMIT University

RMIT University is one of Australia’s original and leading educational institutions, producing some of Australia’s most employable graduates. As an innovative, global university of technology, with its heart in the city of Melbourne, RMIT has an international reputation for excellence in work-relevant education and high quality research, and engagement with the needs of industry and community.


With more than 70,000 students studying at RMIT campuses in Melbourne, in Vietnam, online, and at partner institutions throughout the world, the University is one of the largest in the country. It has built a worldwide reputation for excellence in professional and vocational education and research. A vibrant alumni community now stretches across more than 100 countries.


The College of Science, Engineering and Health has internationally-recognised expertise in a diverse range of disciplines and incorporates the fields of Sciences, Engineering, IT and Health and Medical Sciences. Comprising ten academic Schools (eight Higher Education schools and two TAFE schools), the College delivers a broad range of programs at apprenticeship, certificate, bachelor, masters and PhD levels. Many programs articulate between TAFE and Higher Education, creating pathways for further study.


The College is focused on providing practical solutions to real-life problems, developing and applying new knowledge and new ways of thinking about the environment and sustainability, health and wellbeing, and advanced technologies through education, research and projects, in collaboration with a wide range of partners. As an internationalised university of technology and design, RMIT brings unique capabilities and solutions to research through a trans-disciplinary approach that considers both the technological and social dimensions of the work at hand. Research at RMIT is particularly focused on solving the critical global problems affecting communities and the environment in the following areas: designing the future, smart technology solutions, sustainability and climate change challenges, and the future of cities. For information on current research see:






IBM is a global technology and innovation company that stands for progress. In 2011, IBM commemorates 100 years of innovation, bold risks and transformative breakthroughs. With operations in over 170 countries, IBMers invent and integrate hardware, software and services to help forward-thinking enterprises, institutions and people everywhere succeed in building a smarter planet. Working with government departments, Australian companies and equipping a legion of entrepreneurs, IBM makes a significant contribution to the Australian economy. Widely recognised as an employer of choice, IBM holds numerous awards for its industry-leading employment practices and policies.


IBM Research pushes the boundaries of science, technology and business to make the world work better.  Our global network of scientists work in an open collaborative environment on a range of applied and exploratory research projects to help companies, governments and universities apply scientific breakthroughs to solve real-world business and societal challenges.


IBM Research and Development – Australia was established in October 2010. Located in close proximity to the University of Melbourne, the lab will grow to 150 technical and research staff over five years.  Lab researchers are focused on the themes of Smarter Planet and Life Sciences.  Within these areas, research projects in natural resources, disaster management and computational biology are being explored.  The lab encompasses the IBM Research Collaboratory in Life Sciences – Melbourne, which is part of the Victorian Life Sciences Computation Initiative (VLSCI). Collaboratory researchers work with life sciences and medical researchers from the University of Melbourne and across Victoria, applying high performance computing to research problems in the biological sciences.





Melbourne Convention Bureau

By partnering with Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) to bid for and host an international conference, local bid partners have the opportunity to: raise their profile; focus government attention on their field of interest; attract sponsors, government funding and new association members; and stage an event which delivers a revenue surplus to their association. MCB provides free assistance to academics and universities to secure international meetings by helping to obtain financial support, produce bid documents, arrange and conduct site inspections for key decision makers and more.


MCB’s core function is to secure international and national conferences for the state of Victoria by working with associations, corporate organisations and event planners from around the world. MCB is a full service bureau with staff and representation in five countries – Australia (Melbourne and New South Wales), China, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States – with an unequalled reputation for facilitating the delivery of high quality conferences.


For more information contact Ms Bev Williamson, Director Business Development
on (03) 9693 3344.






ARMI is an international centre for regenerative medical research, with over 20 different nationalities represented amongst our growing staff of over 200 scientists. The Institute fosters a dynamic, highly collaborative culture, encouraging cross pollination of ideas among scientists of different disciplines and years of experience. We rely heavily on advances in basic research to develop novel clinical applications of stem cell biology, cellular therapy and tissue engineering.


We are carrying out studies to understand the fundamental principles of regeneration biology aimed at developing treatment strategies for such conditions as heart disease, muscular dystrophy, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, brain injury and autoimmune disorders. We train the next generation of basic and clinical scientists and act as a focus for public engagement and source of advice for policy makers.


ARMI contributes to Monash University’s undergraduate teaching program and is a major site of postgraduate training and access for external scientific visitors through research collaborations.


ARMI is an integral part of the newly formed Monash University Faculty of Biomedical and Psychological Sciences, located at one of the world’s largest regenerative medicine and stem cell research centres. Established through a joint $153M venture between Monash University, the Victorian and Federal Governments, ARMI builds on the University’s existing strengths in biomedical research, and supports the critical infrastructure required to deliver the next generation of discoveries in regenerative medicine





St Vincent’s Hospital

St Vincent’s Melbourne is a leading A1 tertiary hospital providing medical and surgical services, sub-acute care, aged care, correctional health care, mental health services and a range of community and outreach services. St Vincent’s is the largest metropolitan provider of hospital services to rural and regional Victoria and has an outstanding reputation in post graduate education and training. The hospital has a comprehensive research program involving basic and translational research. Additionally, bioengineering research leading to many successful clinical outcomes has been specifically fostered throughout the hospital’s research community in combination with associated Institutes co- located on the campus.









Club Melbourne Ambassador Program

The Club Melbourne Ambassador Program is a proud sponsor of Convergence Science Network and the Graeme Clark Oration. Owned and led by Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, with collaboration and support from the Melbourne Convention Bureau and Victorian State Government, Club Melbourne brings together leaders in diverse fields including medicine, science and technology to establish, secure and host international conferences in Melbourne. Since its inception in 2005, Club Melbourne Ambassadors have delivered over 100 international conferences worth in excess of $600 million to become one of the world’s most influential Ambassador programs.


Find out more about us and how to collaborate with us at:







Melbourne Health


Melbourne Health is one of Victoria’s leading public healthcare services, with a strong tradition of providing the best possible care for our patients, excellent teaching and training for staff and future health professionals, and a commitment to biomedical research to improve outcomes for all. Serving a population base of more than

one million Melburnians, as well as regional and rural Victorians and interstate patients, our world-class reputation has its beginnings in The Royal Melbourne Hospital – Victoria’s first public hospital – established in 1848 to answer the need for public health services for a rapidly growing town.


Today, we are a partner in the internationally renowned Parkville Precinct, with our services involved in vibrant research programs turning biomedical research into clinical

improvements for our patients. Melbourne Health comprises The Royal Melbourne Hospital, North-Western Mental Health and the Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory.


Melbourne Health at a glance:

•       Almost 100,000 inpatient services in one year

•       More than 645,000 outpatient appointments annually

•       More than 57,000 emergency presentations each year

•       More than 8,000 staff employed across 33 sites

•       About 1,400 beds across hospital and community settings

•       One of two major adult trauma services in Victoria

•       More than 800 staff involved in clinical research across all disciplines



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About the Convergence Forum

The Convergence Science Network will announce a series of events in early 2015.  Our program will include presentations from science thought leaders and practitioners, events where we explore topical issues in more depth and we¹ll be presenting some of our brightest scientists who will share their exciting work in convergence science.

Convergence Science Symposium

The Convergence Science Network is an initiative that promotes an understanding of convergence science to the community, why it is important and how it is helping researchers and businesses realise their visions in delivering improved health and well-being.

Graeme Clark Oration

Join our community

The Graeme Clark Oration is delivered by global leaders in science in honour of Prof. Graeme Clark’s pioneering work in developing the bionic ear in Melbourne in the 1970’s.  It is recognised as Australia’s most prestigious free public science event and is attended by secondary school students.

The Convergence Science Network is excited about its networking activities and is inviting organisations to join this unique science communication and engagement initiative.

Contact us to find out the exclusive benefits available to Network sponsors.  We also offer an  Individual Membership package of benefits.

We Engage with the community to share developments in convergence science and how these advances impact medicine and health care.

We Inspire the research community, start-ups, existing businesses,  government agencies and schools to take advantage of the opportunities offered by convergence science.

We Create the environment and opportunities for new ideas, knowledge and resources across different science disciplines to come together to improve health.