Kirby Institute researcher announced as one of Australia's Top 5 Under 40

Congratulations to Kirby Institute research fellow, Dr Denton Callander, who was today selected for the Top 5 Under 40 program.

The Top 5 Under 40 initiative gives voice to the next generation of researchers in the fields of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medical research. The winners will undertake a two week media residency in Sydney at RN, the ABC's national ideas network.

Supported by UNSW Sydney and ABC RN, the Top 5 Under 40 recognises Australia’s top early-career science communicators and nurtures their communication skills and media awareness.


Dr Denton Callander


Dr Denton Callander is a medical science researcher in the Sexual Health Program at the Kirby Institute. He studies the intersection between sex, sexually transmissible infections and technology.

“I want to demystify the nexus between sex, and by extension sexual health, and technology,” said Dr Callander. “People are very interested in the way that technology is shaping our sexual behaviour, and for me, it's one of the most interesting questions that we face.

I think there are so many profound facts that should be more broadly discussed, like the fact that half of the people in Australia that have chlamydia right now don't know it. For me, a fact like that highlights the cleverness of these infections: the fact that, despite our pretty deep knowledge of them, they persist.

Their tragic beauty is that they have managed to exploit the great human irrationality: sex. And if you add technology to that mix — the fact that we can now find sex whenever and however we want it with relative convenience — you start to stir the pot even faster.”

Following their mid-year residencies, the Top 5 Under 40 will be among ABC’S representation during National Science Week, 12 – 20 August 2017.

Date published: 
Thursday, 8 June 2017