Melbourne Connect's very first


A five-day innovation festival delivered by the community who call Melbourne Connect home.

Discover the people, projects, and possibilities making Melbourne’s newest innovation precinct a place for curious conversations and bringing together the most brilliant minds to tackle some of the most pressing problems facing our society.

Connect with a community of researchers, industry, startups, SME’s, government, students, artists and the new Science Gallery Melbourne, with over 30 events to choose from ranging from panels to pitches, exhibits to entrepreneurial expos, so join us for this action-packed week.



A connected community committed to creating change.

From pitch events to panels, exhibits to entrepreneurial expos, this five-day festival is a chance to explore this new purpose-built innovation precinct powered by the University of Melbourne.



All events are free to attend and the majority are available with both in-person and hyrbrid tickets available.


Connect with a community committed to creating change and meet the people who call this precinct home.


Visit the Melbourne Connect cafe on the Superfloor and be immersed amongst the event spaces where the festival is being held.



Science Gallery Melbourne

Under the cover slip

Anatomy & Physiology Society

Emerging Tech Pitch Night

YBF x Melbourne Connect

Scaling for Impact with Prof Paul Tracey

Menzies Oration x UniMelb

Plugged in or Unplugged? Exploring tech in meditation practices

Contemplative Studies Centre

Harnessing the power of AI to transform your business

Faculty of Engineering & Information Technology

Technodystopia: Are we heading towards Blade Runner?

Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Digital Ethics

Science in the balance: how universities can manage research and education

Faculty of Science


Community Partners

Interactive Live Streams




Day One
Day One 13 August
Day Two
Day Two 15 August
Day Three
Day Three 16 August
Day Four
Day Four 17 August
Day Five
Day Five 18 August
Faculty of Science

Faculty of Science

  • Science
  • Education
  • The Forum
  • Friday 8am - 10.30am

Science in the balance: how universities can manage research and education

Join an expert panel discussing the vital role of scientific research and education, and the challenges universities face in delivering both.
Science Gallery

Science Gallery

  • Art
  • Science + Tech
  • Science Gallery, Melbourne
  • Daily 10am - 4pm

MENTAL at Science Gallery

Part exhibition, part experiment, MENTAL is a welcoming place to confront societal bias and stereotypes around mental health. MENTAL presents over 20 experimental projects from local and international artists and research collaborators that reflect a range of different perspectives on mental health and ways of being. A place to explore, empathise and question what it means to be human using science, technology and creativity.
  • The Studio
  • 13, 14, 15 August

InnovatEd Bootcamp

Are you ready to test an idea and learn the skills it takes to build an education technology innovation? Roll up your sleeves and join us for a fun weekend bootcamp where you can gain the tools and know-how to develop your education technology ideas.
  • The Lab
  • Friday 4:30pm

Under the Coverslip 2021

Under the Coverslip is a unique exhibition that showcases the incredible images captured by students in the field of biomedical science research. The event aims to draw attention to the beauty and intricacy of biomedical science by magnifying images of cells and molecules that are usually invisible to the naked eye. These are captured using high resolution microscopes and will be displayed in the medium of images, both still and moving. For 5 days only, these images will be on display at Melbourne Connect!
  • Forum
  • Monday 9am - 9:45am

The Conversation: Behind the Curtain

See the team from The Conversation in action through one of their unique editorial meetings where they show how they pick and edit stories and work with experts to create them.
  • Melbourne Connect, Superfloor
  • Monday 11:00

50 Words Project

The 50 Words Project is an online research project that aims to put together 50 words from every Indigenous language in Australia.
  • The Forum
  • Monday 12:00 - 1pm

Plugged in or Unplugged? Exploring technology in meditation practices

A stimulating discussion around the ancient practice of meditation and whether apps help or hinder their goals. Featuring a stellar line up of panelists representing everyone from app CEOs, researchers, meditations teachers and a Buddhist monk.
  • The Forum
  • Monday 6pm

MAXONIQ@Melbourne Connect Launch Event

The MAXONIQ@Melbourne Connect will launch the new MAXONIQ brand in our new home at Melbourne Connect. The invitation only event will host 60 to 70 guests including Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, academics, suppliers, government representatives and investors to showcase MAXONIQ innovations as a precinct partner.
YBF Ventures

YBF Ventures

  • Startups
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Launchpad
  • Monday 5:30pm

Emerging Tech Pitch Night at Melbourne Connect

Join YBF, Silicon Beach Australia, Women in Emerging Tech and Algorand Foundation to pitch your emerging tech startup at Melbourne Connect Innovation Week.
  • Blackbox Theatre
  • Monday, 6pm

Science Dean’s Lecture – Is scientific exploration worth the cost?

Join us during National Science Week as we ask the question - 'is scientific exploration worth the cost?'
Rockwell Automation

Rockwell Automation

  • Automation
  • Technology
  • The Forum
  • Tuesday 8:00am

Digital Perspectives – Rockwell Automation

Industry leaders are invited to discuss how innovation can drive productivity and efficiency of people, processes, and products across enterprises. This event is by invitation only.
  • Forum 2 & 3
  • Tuesday 09:30 - 1:30pm

Future Cities Symposium: How Regenerative Urban Design & Placemaking Will Restore Us

Regenerative Design is mooted as the Next Big Thing, but what does it look and feel like, how does it challenge existing ideas about sustainability, and how can it restore us and our cities? Join Urban Designers Dean Landy and Haley Hooper from ClarkeHopkinsClarke Architects as they explore this question in a half-day symposium with leaders in research, design, planning and urban strategy.
  • Online
  • Tuesday 10:30am

ONLINE: Little Scientists Free Virtual Incursions

National Science Week virtual incursions with Little Scientists Simultaneous morning tea — Inspiring children to explore and discover food For National Science Week, we invite parents, early childhood educators, teachers and children to join us for morning tea to explore this very diverse and interesting topic in a playful way. Our presenters will explore the food we eat for morning tea, guide you through fun investigations and share some surprising observations with you.
  • The Deck
  • Tuesday 12pm - 2pm

Lunchtime Board Games

Started in 2015 by small group of inclusive and enthusiastic gamers ‘lunchtime board games’ offers a a casual space for new and experienced players to connect and meet people from across the University.
  • Online
  • Tuesday 12:30pm

Childcare at Melbourne Connect. An introduction to FROEBEL Carlton Early Learning Centre

Meet FROEBEL, the incoming childcare provider at Melbourne Connect! “We believe that every child should have the opportunity to grow into a curious, capable, caring and contributing global citizen, beginning with an empowered childhood.”
  • Forum 2 & 3
  • Tuesday 2pm

Technodystopia: Are we heading towards Blade Runner?

Join us for this screening of Blade Runner and panel discussion. In 1982, Blade Runner floored audiences with its technodystopian predictions of the future. Almost 30 years on, some of the projections of Blade Runner seem absurd, yet others seem eerily accurate. How successful is art and film at predicting our future? Should we pay more attention to the artists that creatively explore what might come to be?
  • Melbourne Connect, Superfloor
  • Tuesday 14:30

Meet the Neighbours 2: Meet the students

This event is an opportunity for University of Melbourne students and residents of the University’s new innovation precinct, Melbourne Connect, to meet and connect.
  • Studio
  • Tuesday 5:30pm

Careers in Startups (Engineering)

StartUp Link’s Careers in Startups Event seeks to inform students on the opportunities that exist in the exciting world of startups. If you are an engineering student, join us to hear about career paths and opportunities in the startup space through a panel discussion and Q&A session featuring prominent software engineers and developers from various Melbourne startups.
  • Launchpad
  • Tuesday 5:30pm

Aging 2.0 Meetup: The Future of Care

Join Live and in person, FireSide Chat. Aging2.0 global founder Stephen Johnston (135+ chapters) with Kyall Walker, Head of Venturing BUPA ANZ. This will be supported by three local startup pitches and National Insights from Dementia Australia facilitated by Melbourne patron Marc Niemes.
  • Boardroom
  • Tuesday 5:30pm

Arts Connections: Chat with Professionals

The Arts Connections is our regular series that aims to provide students with chances to connect with industry professionals. In this 1-hr session, we will invite Tim Bright, an experienced festival manager and creative producer, as our guest to have a close conversation and share his career insights/experience with 10-15 students.
  • Forum 2 & 3
  • Wednesday 08:00

Morning Yoga

Welcome to your morning yoga session hosted by Melbourne University Sport. This session is designed to get your morning started in the right way with your body moving and your blood flowing.
  • Forum
  • Wed 12:00pm

Innovating Complex Mental Health Care with SANE Australia

From pivoting to digital care and support, to changing the narrative around complex mental health needs and living well, SANE Australia is innovating its services, and tackling stigma head-on.
  • Launchpad
  • Tuesday 5:30pm

Maxipaedia & MAXONIQ the founder story of health tech commercialisation

The Five year Startup. What's next and what does it take to translate medical experience, research and innovation into a commercial product?
  • Forum
  • Wednesday 5:30pm

Menzies Oration – Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s)? Scaling for Impact

Menzies Foundation in collaboration with the University of Melbourne, is delighted to announce that Professor Paul Tracey will deliver the 2021 Menzies Oration.
Melbourne Entrepreneurial Centre

Melbourne Entrepreneurial Centre

  • Networking
  • Startups
  • Launchpad
  • Wednesday 5:30pm - 6:30pm

Speed date a founder

Hosted by the Melbourne Entrepreneurial Centre, 'Speed date a founder' is an opportunity to meet a bunch of friendly founders and get to know them, their startup/project, and find out how you might be able to help each other. You'd be amazed at how many great connections can be made in a couple of minutes over a quick drink!
  • Forum, Melbourne Connect
  • Tuesday 6:00pm - 8:00pm

Harnessing the power of AI to transform your business

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is used ubiquitously to address complex business challenges like fraud, customer support, data analysis and personalisation. AI can create opportunities to unlock new efficiencies, increase productivity and decrease costs. It can also offer well-considered decision-making, risk mitigation, forecasting, logistics optimisation and insights to better understand your customer.