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Selection Panel 2015

The selection panel for the UC Book of the Year 2015 comprised of eminent academics, authors, scholars and critics charged with the challenge of choosing the most appropriate novel from a short-list of great books.

The University of Canberra appreciates the work of all the panel members:

Professor Nick Klomp, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), University of Canberra

Professor Nick KlompProfessor Nick Klomp is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) at the University of Canberra, responsible for academic policy, teaching and learning quality and enhancement, and student support and equity. He has a Bachelor of Applied Science degree from Curtin University, First Class Honours from Murdoch University and a PhD in ecology from Glasgow University.

Prior to his appointment as Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Klomp was the Dean of the Faculty of Science at Charles Sturt University, leading one of the largest and most diverse science faculties in Australasia. Under his leadership the Faculty enjoyed enormous growth in its research and teaching programs, underpinned by multi-million dollar grants and many new collaborations with government, industry and education providers.

Professor Klomp has won the Vice-Chancellor's Award for Teaching Excellence, was a weekly Science Correspondent for ABC radio for more than eleven years, and has thrice been nominated for the Eureka Prize for the Promotion of Science.

In addition to his extensive teaching career, Professor Klomp is recognised internationally for his research in applied ecology and environmental science, having authored two books and hundreds of publications, successfully supervised more than a dozen doctoral students, and attracted several large nationally-competitive grants.

Professor Jen Webb, Professor of Creative Practice, University of Canberra

Professor Jen WebbJen Webb studied in South Africa, New Zealand, Canada and Australia. She holds a PhD in cultural theory (art and society) and a DCA in writing (creativity and embodiment). She is Professor of Creative Practice in the Faculty of Arts and Design, where she leads research in creative writing. Her academic interests focus on the relationship between artistic practice and society, including how representations are made of human rights issues, conflict and crisis, and how individuals perceive themselves and their lived experience. She also investigates the links between creativity and knowledge, and particularly about how research training can best be conducted in art disciplines.

Jen's research has resulted in a variety of outputs, both creative and critical. Her books include titles on the works of Michel Foucault and Pierre Bourdieu, and on the topics of globalization, visual culture and representation, as well as the collection of poems, Proverbs from Sierra Leone (Five Islands Press, 2004) and the short story collection Ways of Getting By (Ginninderra Press, 2006). Her academic essays, articles and reviews, and her poems and short stories, have been widely published in Australia and overseas, and her artist books exhibited in Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong. Jen is currently writing a book titled Understanding the body (with Dr Jordan Williams; for Sage Publications, London), and a volume on creative research (for P&H Publications, Cambridge).

Margaret Pomeranz, Renowned film critic and book lover

Margaret PomeranzMargaret Pomeranz AM, is a co-presenter of At The Movies on ABC Television. After beginning her career in the media as a journalist and screenwriter, she joined the newly established Special Broadcasting Service as a writer/producer where she became the producer and presenter of The Movie Show, and went on to executive produce Front Up, Subsonics, the AFI Awards and the If Awards.

She is past president of the Film Critics Circle of Australia, a past member of the Advertising Standards Board and past president of Watch on Censorship.

'As a movie person, I was thrilled to be invited to be on the panel to select the UC 'Book of the Year' 2014. The books selected for the shortlist were a revelation to me. I immersed myself in the range of cultures and narratives presented and recommend all of the shortlisted books to everyone. The subsequent discussion with my immensely impressive fellow panelists was robust, insightful and fun and I think, despite individual passions for individual works, we were happy to reach a consensus in our final decision. 

Emma Donoghue's Room is a fascinating, at times thrilling book which challenges one's notions of cognitive development and of displacement from the world. It is a completely original work and I hope all those who read it at the University of Canberra will be as touched and intrigued as I was.'

Professor Anthony Eaton, Associate Professor, University of Canberra

Anthony EatonAssociate Professor Anthony Eaton has been writing  professionally for children, young adults, and adults since the late -1990s. He  has published eleven novels, twice won the Western Australian Premier's  Literary Award for young adult fiction, for his first novel The Darkness (2000) and for Fireshadow (2005). Fireshadow was also an honour  book in the Children's Book Council of Australia Book of the Year Awards.

At the end of 2005 he travelled to Antarctica to research  his novel Into White Silence which received critical acclaim, including  an Honour Book Prize in the 2009 CBCA awards and a shortlisting in the  Queensland Premier's Literary Awards. In late 2011, Random House Australia  re-published a literary edition of Into White Silence for the adult  marketplace.

His Darklands Trilogy have been shortlisted and  awarded in the Aurealis Awards for Australian Speculative Fiction. The  final book of the trilogy, Daywards, was released by UQP in March 2010,  and was a CBCA notable Australian Children's book in 2011

He works as an Associate Professor of Creative Writing  and Literary Studies at the University of Canberra, where he researches the contemporary influence of Young Adult fiction, and the realities of creative  practice at the nexus of professional academic life. He is currently working on  a Cyberpunk trilogy.

Ms Bronte Cleary, President of the University of Canberra Student's Association (UCSA)

Bronte Cleary photoBronte Cleary was recently elected as the President of the University of Canberra Students' Association (UCSA) for 2015.  In her previous role of Education Vice President at the UCSA last year Bronte was involved in the promotion of the winner of the UC Book Project; Room by Emma Donoghue. Growing up surrounded by books and even being named after one of the greatest authors of all time, Charlotte Bronte, she has been an avid reader and lover of literature.

Bronte is also studying a double degree at the University of Canberra in Politics and International Relations with Communication in Media and Public Affairs. Bronte's particular interest in this field of study is the role of e-democracy and the role it has played in social revolutions in the international sphere in the 21st Century.