SXSW Sydney taps local and global thought leaders to solve the problems of the future

Reveals a taster of the Session Select conference sessions for the 2023 event

SXSW Sydney

October 15 – 22, 2023

Sydney NSW, Australia

More Information Here

In collaboration with the NSW Government Via Destination NSW, TEG & SXSW®

 Sydney, NSW – Friday, 12 May: South by Southwest Sydney 2023 (SXSW Sydney) today announces the first Session Select programming to be featured at October’s futurist conference.

The sessions shared today are just a sample of the results of the SXSW Sydney 2023 Session Select intake, a key part of SXSW Sydney’s 2023 conference format. Over 1,400 submissions were made from the global creative community, which garnered over 100,000 votes from members of the public.

SXSW Sydney’s inaugural Session Select programme is made up of local and global talent, exploring and reshaping the very-near and distant futures, answering tomorrow’s issues today; featuring topics to rewire thinking, redirect sustainability policy and change the way you work.

“Known as PanelPicker at SXSW in Austin, it’s a popular part of the conference, offering industry professionals the chance to tell us what they want to hear about,” said Colin Daniels, SXSW Sydney Managing Director. “We’ve received an unbelievable number of incredible sessions – shortlisting them down to 300 for the conference is proving tough – but what a great problem to have. The sessions presented today are just a taste of some of the incredible conversations at SXSW Sydney that will shape our future,” Daniels continued.

From Sunday, October 15 to Sunday, October 22, 2023, Sydney will be the first city outside of Texas to become a hub for future-gazing, as the Asia-Pacific’s pre-eminent creative industries come together across content pillars of Tech and Innovation, Gaming, Music, Screen and Culture within a stacked week-long program. To access what SXSW Sydney 2023 has to offer, you need a badge. SXSW Sydney 2023 Platinum and Industry badges are now available for purchase HERE.

First look Session Select content for SXSW Sydney 2023:

This sample of sessions covers topics like AI, robotics, the future of work, tackling climate change, new approaches to creativity and the future of marketing. More to be announced soon.

It’s 2050 and The Robots are Among Us

The world robot population is already in the billions: where will it be in 2050? Distinguished Professor Fang Chen, an internationally-recognised leader in AI and data science, will be joined by Ed Santow (Co-Founder, Human Technology Institute) and other to demonstrate robots in action, tackle the ethics behind robots, the impacts of ChatGPT and how to make robots and AI more culturally diverse to reflect our population.

 Thriving in the Future (of Work)

Have changes in ways of working and technology made us more adaptable to our modern work environment? The future promises a more rounded and fulfilling work life with AI doing the grunt work and remote working making our lives supremely flexible. What do we need to realise our potential, improve productivity and create value at work? Join our star panel including Derek Laney (Slack from Salesforce), Dominic Price (Atlassian), Mary Lemonis (REA Group) and Ross Dawson (Advanced Human Technologies Group) as they take stock of where we are going and how we guide our organisations to best drive productivity.

The Full Stack Human

Full Stack Humans are diverse by design, collaborative by nature and the future belongs to them. Adaptability is becoming more important than singular expertise and will be essential in solving humanity’s biggest challenges. A term inspired by computer programmers, Full Stack Humans will be explored in this talk from the team at Future Crunch, to expand our horizons, harness the strength to overcome our biggest challenges and inspire new ways of thinking to foster human progress.

 Finding work life balance: Can we achieve the ultimate goal?

Ben Crowe has been changing people’s mindsets for 30 years. Here he will take you on an inspiring and unexpected journey to discover the magical and counterintuitive principles behind some of the world’s most successful athletes, CEOs, teams and executive teams, how they balance work and life, and ultimately achieve success.

 What can we learn from the skies of alien planets? Astrophysicists tell all

What do the skies of other planets tell us about whether we could live there? Join astrophysicists Dr Elisa Quintana and Dr Thomas Barclay from NASA Goddard Space Flight Centre, proud Wiradjuri woman and rising star in the Astrophysics field, Kirsten Banks, and UNSW’s Dr Benjamin Montet as we explore how current scientific research compares to what we’ve seen in films, TV and books.

Our Moonshots to Net Zero by 2030

To achieve Net Zero by 2030, we need to electrify our society, remove the plastic from our oceans, protect our biodiversity and feed 9 billion people. That’s where ‘moonshots’ come in – ambitious goals that require innovation, collaboration and dedication to achieve. Explore how to reach for the moon with Kylie Ahern (STEM Matter/The Brilliant), Jehan Kanga (RUX Energy) and Courtney Hohne (Storyteller, X: The Moonshot Factory).

Rage with The Machine: Harnessing AI creativity in Music and Songwriting

Sonic Technologist Justin Shave and Uncanny Valley cofounder Charlton Hill discuss their pioneering foray into the use of AI and machine learning in the songwriting and music production process. Join their fantastic conversation that dissects the latest breakthroughs in the use of digital tools around the world and assess what’s in store in the not-too-distant future.

New Music Trends Across Greater China

Across Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, younger artists are challenging the supremacy of legendary Mandopop stars. Take a deep-dive into new music coming out of both Greater China and the Mandarin-speaking diaspora around the world with Grammy-nominated Mix engineer Matthew Sim, Lydia Yi (Head of A&R China, Outdustry), Cindy Gu (Managing Director, Fabled Records) and Marcus Rowland (General Manager China, Outdustry).

The Secret Benefits of Universal Design

How can disability make innovation unique? With a captivating storytelling style, dark sense of humour and razor-sharp wit, join speaker, DJ, entrepreneur and quadruple amputee Tom Nash in a perspective-changing hour about how Universal Design has the ability to solve problems that can help the individual and have unintended positive consequences for the wider population.

 Sports Marketing: How do we guarantee the future of sports entertainment?

The sports industry faces new challenges from Gen Z’s waning interest in sport to platform viewing proliferation and increased competition from sports globally. We need to understand the new rules to cut through and engage the next generation of fans. Here, Joe Weston (We Are Social), Kim McConnie, (Kayo Sports) and Olympic Gold Medallist Chloe Dalton will explore the changing landscape of sports marketing, the cultural impact it has on our lives, and how we can ensure we’re mastering the new arenas for sports viewing and conversation.

CSIRO and Main Sequence announced as 2050 Conference Track Partner

Today Australia’s national science agency, CSIRO and Main Sequence are officially revealed as co-partners of the 2050 Conference Track at SXSW Sydney 2023.

What will 2050 look like? The programming in this conference track will dive deep into the most exciting scientific and technological solutions to the biggest challenges we face.

“CSIRO and Main Sequence Ventures are proud to partner with SXSW Sydney on their ‘2050’ Conference Track, which will take a big-picture perspective on how innovative science and technology can help solve intractable problems from climate change and health to space exploration and food security,” said Professor Elanor Huntington FTSE, Executive Director – Digital, National Facilities & Collections, CSIRO.

“The power and impact of combining science and creativity is well understood, but often forgotten. SXSW Sydney echoes our commitment to using these addressing the world’s biggest challenges in this way by 2050,” said Phil Morle, Main Sequence Partner.

How to attend SXSW Sydney 2023

A SXSW Sydney 2023 badge provides access to the week-long conference, expo, festivals and networking sessions, with each badge type granting varying levels of access. SXSW Sydney 2023 Platinum and Industry badges provide core access to more than 1,000 ground-breaking events and networking sessions with some of the world’s leading thinkers, performers and industry professionals, and are available for purchase now. Platinum badges secure the holder primary access to all programming, while Industry badges secure priority access to all conference events and industry-specific festivals, talks, workshops and parties. Learn more and buy your badge today at

Sydney is the leading connector to innovation and creativity in the Asia-Pacific; the events and theatre capital of the region, and ranks second in Asia for fin-tech development and sixth globally*. Further SXSW Sydney conference, festival, exhibition and event line-ups will be revealed across 2023, with opportunities to attend over 1000 sessions, screenings and performances, immersive activations, unforgettable parties and dynamic networking events across the city. This October, discover the unexpected ideas and diverse discussions SXSW Sydney makes possible when creative people come together.







OCTOBER 15 – 22, 2023






Famous for its sparkling harbour and golden beaches, Sydney is Australia’s most diverse and inclusive city and is home to a thriving arts and culture scene and buzzing 24-hour economy. As the gateway for international arrivals and major events capital of the Asia Pacific – there is no better city than Sydney to host SXSW’s next chapter. For more information on the host city of SXSW Sydney and things to see and do in Sydney, visit Share your favourite Sydney experiences on social media using @sydney #FeelNewSydney

SXSW SYDNEY, SOUTH BY SOUTHWEST SYDNEY and other SXSW, LLC marks used under license

We acknowledge the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation as the Traditional Custodians of this land we now call Sydney, where this event will take place. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging for their continuing connection with cultural, spiritual and educational practices, and extend this respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. Always was, always will be.

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