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Acclaimed social researcher and bestselling author Hugh Mackay AO launches Big Ideas, a new quarterly forum engaging the local community in the robust exchange of ideas.

Drawing on six decades experience in social research, Hugh Mackay argues that social fragmentation is the greatest challenge we now face, because fragmentation leads to isolation and, since we are essentially social beings, isolation leads to a heightened risk of anxiety and depression. He suggests we need to become 'ambassadors for compassion', rebuilding trust in our local neighbourhoods and communities through a disciplined commitment to the exercise of kindness and respect - especially towards those we don't agree with. He describes compassion as the only rational response to an understanding of what it means to be human.

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