It’s Time for Change – New Perspectives on Body Image

Anna Dennis
Events Manager
03 7043 7390

Date & Time

September 07, 2023
5:30 - 7:00pm


Lecture Theatre, The Betty & John Laidlaw AO Alfred Innovation & Education Hub, Alfred Hospital 75 Commercial Road Melbourne, VIC 3004 Australia

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It’s Time for Change – New Perspectives on Body Image
Associate Professor Gemma Sharp
2023 Paul Bourke Lecture

About the Lecture

Body image concerns are unfortunately very common. More than 43 percent of people in Australia are dissatisfied with their physical appearance. Negative body image can lead to extreme dieting, excessive exercise, the pursuit of risky cosmetic surgery, as well as overall poor self-esteem.

Body image concerns are also one of the strongest risk factors for the development of eating disorders, which impact more than 1 million Australians of all ages, genders and backgrounds. Unfortunately, less than one in four people ever receive treatment.

Monash University’s Associate Professor Gemma Sharp will speak on her innovative strategies to use the latest technology to address body image concerns and eating disorders. This includes her pioneering use of conversational artificial intelligence to provide thousands of people with the help they need to feel better about their bodies.

She will also share how our mobile phones can be a useful tool to both ‘sense’ when we are experiencing body image distress from our app usage, and deliver highly personalised support whenever and wherever we need it – essentially personalised medicine delivered through your phone.

About the Speaker

Associate Professor Gemma Sharp is a National Health and Medical Research Foundation Emerging Leadership Fellow at Monash University, and Research Lead and Senior Clinical Psychologist at the Statewide Women’s Mental Health Service at Alfred Health. She leads the Body Image and Eating Disorders Research Group in the Department of Neuroscience at Monash University’s Central Clinical School. Her research team focuses on understanding the causes of body image-related disorders and developing novel treatments for these disorders. She is the winner of over 55 awards in her career, including the prestigious Paul Bourke Award for Early Career Research (2022) from the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia. Her research has been cited and influenced the development of clinical practice guidelines both nationally and internationally.

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