BEYOND BELIEFS: Muslim and Non-Muslim Australians Deliberate

Australian Premiere documentary screening

Jointly presented by: Issues Deliberation AustraliaAmerica and The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre, UniSA and supported by the Equal Opportunity Commission

'Untitled' by Shirin Neshat
Friday 21 September 2007

The relationship between Muslim and Non-Muslims in Australia as seen through the eyes of four very different Australians.

What happens when a slice of Australia gets together to talk and think and deliberate about possibly one of the most divisive issues of our times?  'Beyond Beliefs' follows four people through this journey as they question what it means to be Australian in an increasingly diverse society.

The screening will commence at 6.15pm with light refreshments being served in the Town Hall from 5.30pm

Hosted by Nine Network's Ray Martin and including special guest speaker the Hon. Bob Hawke AC.

Ray Martin, in his unique style, will also take some time during the evening to question and explore this important issue further with guests who represent both the Muslim and Non-Muslim perspective in the documentary including Sheikh Mohammed Jamal Omran, Ms Amira Hassan and Mr John McMillan.

For our Muslim guests, a small iftar will be available.

With special guest speakers

  • Mr Ray Martin - MC
  • The Hon Bob Hawke AC
  • Professor Peter Hoj, Vice Chancellor and President, University of South Australia
  • Dr Pamela Ryan, Managing Director, Issues Deliberation AustraliaAmerica

A Closer Production.

Directed by Sophie Hyde and Bryan Mason and Produced by Sarah Wishart, Bryan Mason and Sophie Hyde.

Equal Opportunity Commission logo


Dr Pamela RyanDr Pamela Ryan

As a psychologist, political scientist, organizational consultant and academic, Dr Pam Ryan has helped numerous private and public organizations successfully handle a diverse range of strategic, psychological, organizational, cultural and political issues. Dr Ryan has shared her time between Australia and Texas for almost twenty years. During her first decade in Texas, Dr Ryan conducted award-winning research into the escalation of commitment by venture capitalists, and consulted in the venture capital industry on strategic human resource and organizational culture issues. In 1998, Dr Ryan shifted her focus to the public policy/political arena, to establish Issues Deliberation Australia / Issues Deliberation America, and has been Managing Director of IDA since its inception. As Managing Director of IDA, Dr Ryan has headed the team of psychologists, sociologists, researchers and over 100 volunteers to ensure the success of numerous political psychology and public policy projects: national Deliberative Polls on whether Australia should become a Republic and Reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians; a �future perfect� Economic Growth Summit and a Constitutional Convention on parliamentary reform for the South Australian government; a cross-country comparative study of True Believer voters in Australia and the USA; and the first International Assembly on Managing the Psychology of Fear and Terror. This unprecedented event brought 90 of the world�s experts on fear and terror to Austin, Texas to collaboratively build strategies for global, national, local and individual application.

In March 2005, Dr Ryan founded Psychologists, Psychiatrists and Social Workers Without Borders (PWOB) as a direct outcome of the first International Assembly on Managing the Psychology of Fear and Terror. In May 2005, Dr Ryan joined a team of psychologists from Israel, Australia and Texas for a PWOB pilot project in Sri Lanka doing tsunami relief work. PWOB is involved in planning similar mental health work for survivors of Hurricane Katrina in the US Gulf coast.

Dr Ryan has authored and co-authored several conference papers and journal articles relating to the academic aspects of IDA projects. Dr Ryan serves on several Boards, including a term on South Australia's Premier's Council for Women. Dr Ryan is also co-founder and co-author of Board Women, an international program to assist women to serve most effectively on Boards of Directors, both private and public. Dr Ryan earned her PhD at the University of Texas. She has taught graduate and undergraduate classes in the psychology of decision making, qualitative research methods, entrepreneurship, organizational behaviour and politics.

Issues Deliberation Australia logoIssues Deliberation AustraliaAmerica

Issues Deliberation AustraliaAmerica (IDA) is a not-for-profit, non-partisan political psychology and public policy think tank. IDA was established to facilitate the conduct and dissemination of high quality research, public consultation, education and public debate on topical social and public policy issues impacting Australia, America and the world.

IDA uses a number of leading edge methodologies from other parts of the world for research, public consultation, education and public debate on social and public policy issues. These include: Deliberative Polling, International Assemblies, National Assemblies, Future Perfect Thinking, Qualitative Research and Quantitative Research.

  • Deliberative Polling encompasses the full spectrum of research methods, utilising random sample surveys, personal interviews and focus groups to facilitate the informed voice of the people. That informed voice can then inform policy. IDA has conducted Deliberative Polls on whether or not Australia should become a Republic, relations between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples, human rights, constitutional reform and the relationship between Muslim and Non-Muslims in Australia.
  • Future Perfect Thinking is an innovative method of strategic planning known to enhance the quality and quantity of ideas generated. For example, in 2003, IDA designed and implemented an Economic Growth Summit for the South Australian Government set in 2013.
  • National and International Assemblies bring the experts together in order to develop a comprehensive solution set for targeted social and public policy problems. IDA designed and convened the first International Assembly on Managing the Psychology of Fear and Terror in Austin Texas in August 2004. One of the key outcomes of this Assembly was the establishment of the international non-profit organization, Psychologists, Psychiatrists and Social Workers Without Borders (PWOB). IDA spearheaded this initiative.

Qualitative and Quantitative research is conducted for all of the above methodologies, both academic and applied. Other leading edge research, for example the cognitive mapping of true believer voters in two countries, exemplifies IDA�s commitment to rigorous cutting edge research that can contribute to both the political psychology field, as well as the real life political arena.

IDA is also committed to significant public education on findings resulting from the above methodologies. Research findings are disseminated to Members of Parliament, government agencies, the general media, professional organizations and directly to the public through publications, presentations, training programs and other educational forums.

While the views presented by speakers within the Hawke Centre public program are their own and are not necessarily those of either the University of South Australia or The Hawke Centre, they are presented in the interest of open debate and discussion in the community and reflect our themes of: strengthening our democracy - valuing our cultural diversity - and building our future.