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Event Details

The Science of Fate: Hannah Critchlow

10 March 2020
6.30pm – 7.30pm AEDT
Roundhouse, UNSW Sydney
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Photo of Hannah Critchlow

Are we really the masters of our own destiny?

The concept of fate has been around since the ancient Greeks, inspiring literature and folklore for thousands of years. However, the science of fate is just getting started. 

In her new book The Science of Fate: Why Your Future is More Predictable Than You Think, internationally acclaimed neuroscientist Hannah Critchlow explores the current state of neurological and genomic research. She breathes new life into the concept of fate by situating it at the core of what we all increasingly believe makes us who we are – the brain. 

Drawing vividly from everyday life, Critchlow illustrates just how much our decisions – from what we eat, to whom we love, to how we vote – are hardwired and predetermined by genetics. 

This fascinating talk will challenge everything we know about ourselves, as well as empowering us to help shape a better future.

Chaired by Joel Pearson, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at UNSW Sydney.

This event is presented by the UNSW Centre for Ideas. Supported by Adelaide Writers' Week.


Wheelchair Accessible

The Roundhouse is located at UNSW Sydney's Kensington Campus, E6 on this map (PDF). You can be dropped off close to the Roundhouse north entrance (D5 on map). Vehicles need to arrive via High Street, Gate 2, follow the road to Third Avenue and turn onto 1st Ave West. The closest accessible parking is available in the Western Campus Car Park on Anzac Parade (G2 on map). 

Hearing Loop Available


The Centre for Ideas can provide Auslan interpreting services for selected talks upon request. 


For event enquires or to discuss your access requirements, please call the Centre for Ideas on 02 9385 9844 or email

The Centre for Ideas is happy to receive phone calls via the National Relay Service. TTY users, phone 133 677, then ask for 02 9385 9844. Speak and Listen users, phone 1300 555 727 then ask for 02 9385 9844. Internet relay users, visit, then ask for 02 9385 9844.

Photo of Hannah Critchlow

Hannah Critchlow

Hannah Critchlow is the science outreach fellow at Magdalene College, University of Cambridge, and has been named a Top 100 UK scientist by the Science Council for her work in science communication. She is listed as one of the University of Cambridge’s inspirational and successful women in science and appears regularly on TV, radio and at festivals to discuss and explore the brain. Critchlow has co-presented on the BBC, helped judge the Wellcome Trust Book Prize and is the author of Consciousness: A Ladybird Expert Book and The Science of Fate: Why Your Future is More Predictable Than You Think. 

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