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Monash University to host 11th biennial ANZALS Conference

Monash University to host 11th biennial ANZALS Conference
November 18, 2013

The Australian and New Zealand Association of Leisure Studies (ANZALS) 11th Biennial Conference is to be staged at Monash University's Peninsula Campus from 4th to 6th December 2013.

With a theme 'Understanding leisure in a complex world: Promoting a Critical Leisure Studies', the conference aims to examine how leisure academics, policy makers and practitioners can develop and harness their subject area to help address significant issues in an increasingly complex world, with its varied and contrasting challenges.

Explaining the theme, statement from ANZALS reads "at present, for example, while affluent countries confront the obesity 'epidemic', those in low income countries are addressing malnutrition, HIV/AIDS and malaria.

"In the rich but 'minority' world, our ageing population are considered by some to be staying alive for 'too long', creating concerns about how society can provide and care for them, while in the impoverished majority they are dying too soon creating a void of wisdom and support to nurture and develop future generations.

"Both scenarios bring hardship for individuals, communities and societies creating disruptions to social relations, and present challenges for policy and industry."

In this context, the ANZALS Conference theme addresses two intertwined issues:

That social, cultural and economic diversity and polarisation is increasing across, between and within global regions; and

That this complex environment presents an opportunity for leisure academics to develop a more critical and inclusive leisure studies.

The statement continues "the key question we have for delegates of this conference is where does leisure fit among these significant issues and what can leisure studies offer in response to the challenges our society is now facing?

"We have argued for many years the importance and benefits that can be accrued to society from leisure at a community, family and individual level. How does this now fit within societies affected by such extensive social problems?

"Can leisure itself, in the form of 'dark' or 'deviant' leisure, be part of the problem? Through this conference, we call for a critical interrogation of the place and value of leisure within a rapidly changing global society."

Aquatics and Recreation Victorian (ARV) is working with the conference organisers to sponsors a tailored stream of the conference on Wednesday 4th December entitled 'Community Recreation and Sports Venues' Role in Leisure Services".

This stream will see leading practitioners suggest how universities can partner with industry to provide effective research. Presentations will include:

• Researchers' insights about aquatic centre service quality
• Satisfaction metrics for fitness club research
• Leisure centre adaptations to climate change
• Retention of gym members
• Assessing the community benefits of aquatic and recreation centres.

For more conference details and other information go to


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