Home News & Events Seminar
CCH Seminar – 17th April – Carolyn Holbrook and Brad Underhill

Join us online or in person for a seminar with Associate Professor Carolyn Holbrook and Dr Brad Underhill.

Creating a Culture of Cancer Prevention

The Cancer Council of Victoria is a world-leading cancer prevention advocacy organisation. Established in the 1930s, the Cancer Council has effectively utilised science and behavioural psychology to change public attitudes and cultural norms as well as to push for an assertive government policy and legislative reform to limit the harm of preventable cancers such as lung and skin cancer. In this presentation we trace the history of how this organisation tried to balance public demands for improved treatment facilities with the desire to do research that might improve treatment, and even point to cure and prevention. By focusing on two case studies – the establishment of the Peter McCallum Institute and Tobacco control advocacy in the 1960/70s- we explain how the Cancer Council made cancer prevention a primary goal of government public health policy. To do this, the Cancer Council  incorporated a multi-fold strategy of high profile campaigns of public advocacy such as the banning of tobacco advertising but also funding research and lobbying policymakers behind the scenes. What we will demonstrate in this presentation is an organisation which is both open to new and innovative ideas and relentless in its pursuit to minimise the threat of cancer.

11am, 17th April

Burwood: C2.05.01
Waurn Ponds: IC2.108
Zoom: Click here

Associate Professor Carolyn Holbrook writes about Australian cultural, political, and policy history—and has a particular enthusiasm for the ways that history can inform and improve contemporary society. Carolyn is the Mid-Career Researcher representative on the CCH Executive.


Dr Brad Underhill completed his PhD at Deakin University in 2022. His thesis, New Deal on the Ground in Papua New Guinea was awarded joint winner of the Hank Nelson Memorial award. His first book will be published by ANU Press.