EDWIN TURNER AND RACHEL WEBSTER Co-Chairs, Scientific Organizing Committee lAU Symposium 173, Astrophysical Applications of Gravitational Lenses, was held in Melbourne, Australia from July 9-14, 1995. The Symposium was sponsored by lAU Commissions 47 and 40. With the discovery by Walsh and collaborators of the first instance of a gravitational lens, the multiply imaged quasar 0957+561, the area of grav- itational lensing moved from speculative theory to a major astrophysical tool. Since that time, there have been regular, approximately biennial in- ternational meetings both in Europe and in North America, which have specifically focussed on gravitational lensing. On this occasion, with the blessing of the lA U, the meeting was held at the University of Melbourne in Australia. It was the first international astronomical meeting to be held at the University of Melbourne, and hope- fully has given the astronomical community some enthusiasm for trekking half-way round the globe to Australia to discuss their latest work.