H.R was born and grew up in Tasmania and returned to live there in2000. He worked at James Cook University in Townsville for thirty years. His wife Margaret was a Senator for Queensland from 1983 to 1999. He taught both Australian history and politics. He is best known for his pioneering work on the history of settler-indigenous relations which became widely known with the publication of The Other Side of the Frontier in 1981. Many books followed. They have been widely read and have received many literary prizes including two Queensland Premier's Prizes. His book Drawing the Global Colour Line, co-authored with Marilyn Lake won the Prime Minister's Prize for non-fiction.
He has contributed widely to public discourse with many articles in national newspapers and frequent appearances on television and radio.
Currently Professor of Geography at the University of the Sunshine Coast, Patrick Nunn formerly taught and researched for 25 years at the international University of the South Pacific, based at its Fiji campus. It was here he developed interests in Indigenous knowledge and particularly in ancient stories, some of which he considers recall observations of memorable events long before written records began.
For the last decade, Patrick’s research interests have extended to Australian Indigenous stories. His analysis of ‘drowning’ stories from 22 sites along the Australian coast suggest that Aboriginal Australians kept alive memories of post-glacial sea-level rise - when the ocean rose across the continent’s fringes - for more than 7000 years.
His new book, The Edge of Memory, discusses these stories and similar ones from Europe and India. For sustained service to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Patrick shared its award of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. He also received the Gregory Medal of the Pacific Science Association in 2003 and, in May 2018, was awarded the Gold Medal of the Royal Geographical Society of Queensland.
Patrick is a prodigious writer with over 250 peer-reviewed publications to his credit including six books.
Billy Griffiths is a writer, historian and research fellow at the Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation. His latest book, Deep Time Dreaming: Uncovering Ancient Australia, explores the extraordinary deep history of the Australian continent. He is also the author of The China Breakthrough and co-editor with Mike Smith of The Australian Archaeologist’s Book of Quotations.