engagement in science

Shoalhaven Science Hub

Together with South East Local Land Services, Landcare Australia, the University of Wollongong and local schools, the Shoalhaven Science Hub is reaching out to engage the community in science learning. In 2016 we turn our attention to what lies beneath.


Ghosts surround us. Everything that has happened leaves traces. Buried pasts, half-remembered stories, hidden life and cryptic clues - Siteworks this year lifts the veil to uncover what lies within.

Michael and Tim Cohen worked together to dig to the point of the Medieval Climatic Anomaly, a warm period that happened between 950 and 1250 CE. After sharing scientific evidence from the dig during the day, at dusk the site was transformed to stage a performance work. This work was part of SITEWORKS 2016 GHOSTINGS. See the video below

Siteworks is Bundanon’s annual spring event which brings scientists, artists and community voices together to share knowledge and ideas arising from the Bundanon sites through a series of discussions, presentations and experiences.

The NSW Regional Science Hub initiative is supported by Inspiring Australia and the NSW Government

read a report by Inspriring Australia's Jackie Randles about the project

National SCience Week 2016

Southern Bass Club News

Our Bio Blitz partner, the Southern Bass Club, is an angling club devoted to conserving and enjoying sport with the Australian bass. These fish are small to medium sized, primarily freshwater native fish found in coastal rivers and streams along the east coast of Australia. The fish are a member of the Percichthyidae family and Macquaria genus, the scientific name being Percalates novemaculeata

Southern Bass has participated in Bundanon's Siteworks events and invited a filmmaker to join them at Tallowa Dam in February 2016 to video the restocking of the reservoir, with newly hatched, 3-month old bass. The reservoir forms part of the Shoalhaven River as it passes through the canyons of Morton National Park.

Science Week 2015

Thanks to Bundanon for your hospitality, great company and sharing of knowledge. Everyone had a great time (and thanks for organising the weather). Terry Crockford, U3A Shoalhaven

Regional high school science students and science teachers spent a day participating in field work activities during Science Week involving: geology, bush regeneration, species preservation, biodiversity mapping, led by specialist facilitators. This program was supported by Inspiring Australia

These field days give the participants an opportunity to contribute to scientific surveys, learning scientific methods and processes. The participants were mentored through a sequence of survey and field work activities, which include flora surveys of riparian transects and geological mapping.

An additional program for adult learners from the University of the 3rd Age was held at Bundanon on October 29th, with orchid expert Alan Stephenson leading participants around the property to view native orchids and discuss orchid habitats. A film of this can be viewed below.

About the Hub

Shoalhaven Science Hub was successful in their application for funding for 2014 and 2015 NSW National Science Week Grants program which supported events presented by NSW Regional Science Hubs during National Science Week. The program is funded by NSW Trade & Investment and the Commonwealth Department of Industry and Science and managed by Inspiring Australia (NSW).

Partnership activities

Landcare Australia, Bundanon Trust and South East Land Care are partnering to increase biodiversity and reconnect native habitat in the Shoalhaven River catchment of NSW with the Living Landscape project, which focuses on lantana clearing and revegetation. The University of Wollongong conducts field work with their students which feeds data and research into the knowledge base of the properties.

Bundanon Trust successfully conducted the Siteworks for Schools event and Bio Blitz in 2014, delivering a series of programs connecting arts and sciences including flora and fauna surveys, and education programs about biodiversity and land regeneration.

Bundanon’s Touched by the Earth program involves hundreds of Shoalhaven school students in a cross-curricular arts and sciences program informed by nature-based education, working with scientists and artists.

The partners have worked together in 2015 with high schools to create the Living Landscape Case Study, which enables school students to learn through site-based field activities. Bundanon works with a numbers of tourist groups and seniors organisations to encourage cultural and environmental participation.

Find out about Bio Blitz 2014 here

Inspiring Australia

Inspiring Australia showcases scientific activity in NSW and create opportunities for community engagement, particularly in regional areas.

NSW Trade & Investment and the Commonwealth Department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education drives the NSW component ofInspiring Australia, the Australian Government’s national strategy for engaging communities with the sciences. Inspiring Australia seeks to build a strong, open relationship between science and society, underpinned by effective communication of science and its uses. As part of this national strategy Inspiring Australia's mission is to:

  • Strengthen science communication networks in NSW
  • Support initiatives that are engaging, transformative and locally relevant across the community, business and government sectors
  • Motivate and inspire Australians from all walks of life to get involved with science and science-related issues.