The Wheeler Centre

The Wheeler Centre is Melbourne’s home for smart, passionate and entertaining public talks on every topic.

Across 200+ events each year, and a unique collection of videos, podcasts and original writing, you’ll find some of our finest local and international writers and thinkers sharing their expertise, their imaginations and their ideas.

From inception, the idea grew with the passion, belief and support of the Victorian State Government, gaining unstoppable momentum. In 2008, when Melbourne was designated a UNESCO City of Literature, this heralded the establishment of the Centre of Books, Writing and Ideas – a vibrant new hub for a diverse range of literary and ideas based organisations and activities. The aim: to provide a home and important focal point for the conversations that matter to Victoria and indeed Australia. As the Centre itself took its physical shape within a newly renovated and dedicated wing of the State Library of Victoria, its position was secured ahead of the official opening with the commitment of patrons, Maureen and Tony Wheeler of Lonely Planet. From that day, the Centre of Books, Writing and Ideas became The Wheeler Centre.

Since the first public event in February 2010, the Centre's story and journey has continued to unfurl and grow. In over five years of existence, The Wheeler Centre has established a reputation for ambition, variety and quality. It is firmly established as a leading arts organisation, dedicated to the dual purpose of being both a vibrant hub for the writing and literary sector and producing a diverse programme of public conversations and events.

Over 1800 speakers have participated in more than 1100 public conversations since 2010.

Solid Air: Australian Spoken Word Poetry

23 October 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Anne-Marie Te Whiu, David Stavanger, PiO, Laniyuk...

If poetry is enjoying a resurgence of interest right now, it's partly...


24 October 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Judith Ryan, Bridget Caldwell, and Laniyuk

Consider community and country as inspiration in the work of Indigenous...

Charlotte Wood

25 October 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Charlotte Wood and Elizabeth McCarthy

How do we maintain friendships as we age?

Lost and Found Edition

28 October 2019
The Wheeler Centre
Stella Charls, Tyson Yunkaporta, Kathryn Hind,...

In October at The Next Big Thing, we’ll explore themes of escape and...

Digital Writers' Festival

29 October 2019 to 2 November 2019
Emerging Writers

Digital Writers' Festival is an online festival dedicated to making conv

William Dalrymple: Corporate Violence and the East India Company

30 October 2019
The Wheeler Centre
William Dalrymple and Clare Wright

Historian William Dalrymple ­­believes the stunning greed and violence of...