2012 Economic and Social Outlook Conference: Program and Speakers

Thursday 1 and Friday 2 November 2012

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DAY ONE, THURSDAY 1 NOVEMBER 2012

8.45 - 9.05am Session 1: Opening - Listen to the recording
Speaker Professor Glyn Davis AC, Vice-Chancellor, The University of Melbourne
9.05 - 10.40am Session 2: Two speeds, two worlds: the domestic and global economic challenges for Australia - Listen to the recording
 

After 21 years of uninterrupted growth, has our economy finally run out of luck? Setting the scene for the conference with a look at the opportunities and risks for Australia as Asia slows, Europe slips back into recession and the US recovery is not yet assured

Chair: Professor Judith Sloan, Professorial Fellow, Melbourne Institute, and Contributing Editor, The Australian

Speakers:

Professor Ian Harper, Partner, Deloitte Access Economics - View presentation

Mr Gary Banks AO, Chairman, Productivity Commission - View presentation

Professor Deborah Cobb-Clark, Ronald Henderson Professor and Director, Melbourne Institute - View presentation

10.40 - 11.00am Morning Tea
11.00 - 12.30pm

Session 3: International financial developments: implications for the Australian economy - Listen to the recording

 

What is happening, exactly, in the international economy? Can Europe get its fiscal house in order? Is there another global financial crisis we should worry about?

Chair: Dr John Handley, Head of Department, Department of Finance, The University of Melbourne

Speakers:

Professor Fariborz Moshirian, Professor of Global Finance and Director of Institute of Global Finance, Australian School of Business, The University of New South Wales - View presentation

Mr Adam Boyton, Chief Economist, Deutsche Bank (Australia)

Mr Alberto Calderon, Group Executive and Chief Executive Aluminium, Nickel and Corporate Development, and Member of the Group Management Committee, BHP Billiton - View presentation

12.40 - 2.00pm Lunch - Listen to the recording
Chair Mr Gary Banks AO, Chairman, Productivity Commission
Speaker Mr Ted Evans AC, Former Treasury Secretary and Westpac Chairman
2.10 - 3.40pm Session 4: Concurrent
  Session 4A: Asia - Listen to the recording
 

Just when we were getting used to the idea of the Asian century, the short-term economic outlook for our neighbourhood is suddenly fraught. Is this a blip, or the warning of more volatility in the years to come?

Chair: Mr Paul Kelly, Editor-at-Large, The Australian

Speakers:

Dr Michael Wesley, Strategic Analyst and Commentator

Professor Ross Garnaut AO, Vice-Chancellor's Fellow and Professorial Research Fellow, The University of Melbourne

Dr David Gruen, Executive Director, Macroeconomics Group, Department of the Treasury - View presentation

  Session 4B: Health - Listen to the recording
 

Will health reform work? This year has seen major changes to hospital funding and performance management. How will these reforms affect service delivery and deal with the costs? Is there more that needs to be done?

Chair: Professor James Angus AO, Dean, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, The University of Melbourne

Speakers:

Professor Stephen Leeder AO, Professor of Public Health and Community Medicine, School of Public Health and Director, Menzies Centre for Health Policy, The University of Sydney - View presentation

Professor Anthony Scott, Professorial Research Fellow, Melbourne Institute - View presentation

Dr Tony Sherbon, Acting Chief Executive Officer, Independent Hospital Pricing Authority - View presentation

  Session 4C: School education - Listen to the recording
 

David Gonski had reported, Julia Gillard has replied and the coalition is up in arms. What is the way forward for school reform?

Chair: Adjunct Professor Alison McClelland, Commissioner, Productivity Commission

Speakers:

Ms Lisa Paul AO PSM, Secretary, Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations

Mr Richard Bolt, Victorian Secretary, Department of Education and Early Childhood Development - View presentation

Associate Professor Chris Ryan, Director, Economics of Education and Child Development, Melbourne Institute - View presentation

4.00 - 5.00pm Session 5: Federal financial relations - Listen to the recording
 

All levels of government confront the paradox of a revenue squeeze and increasing demands from voters for better services. Is it time to rethink the federation to break the reform impasse between governments and voters? What do we do about state tax reform? Should we recast the spending responsibilities between the federal and state tiers?

Chair: Dr Lynne Williams, Independent Economics Consultant

Speakers:

Mr Nigel Ray, Executive Director, Fiscal Group, Department of the Treasury - View presentation

Professor Miranda Stewart, Director, Tax Studies, Melbourne Law School, The University of Melbourne - View presentation

Professor John Freebairn, Ritchie Chair in Economics, Department of Economics, The University of Melbourne - View presentation

5.30pm

Book Launch - 50 Years of the Melbourne Institute

Dean's Boardroom, 12 Floor, Faculty of Business and Economics Building

7.00 for 7.30pm Conference Dinner, Melbourne Aquarium - Listen to the recording
Chair Mr Paul Kelly, Editor-at-Large, The Australian
Speaker The Hon Wayne Swan MP, Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer - Read the Speech

DAY TWO, FRIDAY 2 NOVEMBER 2012

8.40 - 10.10AM Session 6: Making our cities more productive - Listen to the recording
 

We tell ourselves we are one of the most urbanised nations in the world. But cities are routinely overlooked in the reform debate. How can we make them better serve our nation? Can government and the private sector share the infrastructure load and make our housing stock more responsive to our needs?

Chair: Mr George Megalogenis, Author and Journalist, The Australian

Speakers:

The Hon Greg Hunt MP, Shadow Minister for Climate Action, Environment and Heritage - View presentation

Professor Henry Ergas, Senior Economic Adviser, Deloitte Australia and Professor of Infrastructure Economics, SMART Infrastructure Facility, University of Wollongong - View presentation

Ms Jane-Frances Kelly, Program Director - Cities, Grattan Institute - View presentation

10.10 - 10.40am Morning Tea
10.40am - 12.10pm Session 7: Concurrent
  Session 7A: The demographic dilemma - Listen to the recording
 

Our population is not only ageing, but shifting in its composition. What are the implications for the long-term reform debates of our changing national mix? Can, or should we alter our demographic destiny?

Chair: Mr Michael Woods, Deputy Chairman, Productivity Commission

Speakers:

The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP, Shadow Minister for Communications and Broadband - Read the Speech

Professor Graeme Hugo AO, Director, Australian Population and Migration Research Centre, The University of Adelaide - View presentation

Professor Judith Sloan, Professorial Fellow, Melbourne Institute, and Contributing Editor, The Australian - View presentation

  Session 7B: Restoring the balance - Listen to the recording
 

The era of big surplus budgets ended with the global financial crisis in 2008-9. With both sides committed to paying down public debt, how quickly can the government move from borrower to saver? How do we best restore the balance?

Chair: Professor Paul Kofman, Dean, Faculty of Business and Economics, The University of Melbourne

Speakers:

Senator the Hon Penny Wong, Minister for Finance and Deregulation - Read the Speech

The Hon Nick Greiner AC, Chairman, Infrastructure NSW

Professor John Daley, Chief Executive Officer, Grattan Institute - View presentation

  Session 7C: Trade and industry policy - Listen to the recording
 

How does Australia remain open in its dealings with the region and the rest of the world when our major trading partners are turning inward, and against one another? Is there anything we can do to reduce the risk of a trade war between China and the United States?

Chair: Professor Peter Lloyd, Emeritus Professor, Department of Economics, The University of Melbourne

Speakers:

The Hon Dr Craig Emerson MP, Minister for Trade

Mr Tony Shepherd AO, President, Business Council of Australia

Ms Patricia Scott, Commissioner, Productivity Commission - View presentation

12.20 - 2.00pm Lunch
 

Professor Glyn Davis AC, Vice-Chancellor, The University of Melbourne

The Hon Tony Abbott MHR, Leader of the Opposition

2.10 - 3.50pm Session 8: Concurrent
  Session 8A: Fiscal future shock - Listen to the recording
 

There are a number of big spending proposals on the table to carry us into the next decade. Yet both sides are reluctant to talk about how to fund them. Meanwhile, the revenue base continues to erode because of changes in consumption patterns and the restructure of the economy. What are the reforms we need to talk about now, before the next bust leaves a deficit too big to close?

Chair: Mr Tony Cole, Business Leader for Investment Consulting in Asia Pacific, Investment Consulting, Mercer (Australia) Pty Ltd

Speakers:

The Hon Andrew Robb AO, Shadow Minister for Finance and Debt Reduction

Mr Innes Willox, Chief Executive, Australian Industry Group - View presentation

Mr Chris Richardson, Director, Deloitte Access Economics - View presentation

  Session 8B: Homelessness - Listen to the recording
 

We were the last rich nation standing during what the rest of the world called the Great Recession. But our macro success masks deep-seated social problems. Has there been any progress in reducing homelessness? What more can be done to assist our most vulnerable citizens?

Chair: Mr Robert Fitzgerald AM, Commissioner, Productivity Commission

Speakers:

The Hon Mary Wooldridge MP, Minister for Mental Health, Women's Affairs and Community Services

Dr Rosanna Scutella, Senior Research Fellow, Melbourne Institute - View presentation

Mr Tony Nicholson, Executive Director, Brotherhood of St Laurence

  Session 8C: Productivity and innovation - Listen to the recording
 

Australia enjoyed a productivity boom in the 1990s, but the statistics over the past decade do not flatter us. What are the causes of our declining productivity? How do we improve our performance and are there any new reforms we should consider to create an innovation culture in the 21st century?

Chair: Mr Gary Banks AO, Chairman, Productivity Commission

Speakers:

The Hon John Brumby MP, Director, Huawei Technologies (Australia) Pty Ltd - View presentation

Dr John Edwards, Board Member, Reserve Bank of Australia and Visiting Fellow, Lowy Institute for International Policy - View presentation

Professor Beth Webster, Professorial Research Fellow, Melbourne Institute, and Director, Intellectual Property Research Institute of Australia - View presentation

3.40 - 4.00pm Afternoon Tea
4.00 - 5.00pm Session 9: Wrap-up - Listen to the recording
  Chair: Professor Judith Sloan, Professorial Fellow, Melbourne Institute, and Contributing Editor, The Australian
 

Panellists:

Mr Paul Fletcher MP, Federal Member for Bradfield

Dr Andrew Leigh MP, Federal Member for Fraser

5.15pm Close