Keith Hancock Lectures

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The Keith Hancock Lecture is named in honour of Emeritus Professor Keith Hancock AO – a Fellow of the Academy since 1968, Academy President for the period 1981–1984 and one of two Australians who are Honorary Fellows of the London School of Economics. The annual lecture was inaugurated in 2009. The Academy Fellows are invited each year to nominate distinguished social scientist to present the Keith Hancock Lecture. As part of the Academy’s Outreach Program the lecture is presented twice—first at the lecturer’s home university and then at another venue, usually in a different city.

Keith Hancock Lecture 2016- A Model of Confusion

Economic Modelling now plays a significant role in the development of public policy development and the conduct of public debate in Australia. Modelling has been central to the case for and against the carbon tax, the mining tax and industrial relations reform. But the widespread use of economic modelling is not matched with widespread understanding […]

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Keith Hancock Lecture 2014- Resilience and fragility in the Asian Century

Behind every policy strategy, of government or business, lies a narrative that contextualises and justifies a course of action.  Restrictive immigration policies are necessary to prevent an oversupply of labour and a taxing of our natural resources… allegedly. Who develops these narratives and how well informed are they? Often they derive from the thinking of influential foreign and supranational organisations, or the conventional wisdom and philosophies of domestic political parties and powerful media organisations. In this lecture, Simon Ville argues that the design of narratives that best shape our future must draw deeply upon our national historical experience.

The newly-published Cambridge Economic History of Australia provides a modern statement of our past experience to guide our economic narratives for the Asian century, highlighting our sources of resilience and exposing our potential frailties. 

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Keith Hancock 2013- Retirement income design with an ageing demographic

  The Academy in conjunction with UNSW and CEPAR, is pleased to present the 2013 Keith Hancock Lecture by Scientia Professor John Piggott, a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia. Population ageing has challenged the standard 20th century retirement income paradigm, which relies on ever-growing payrolls to finance retirees. These structures […]

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Keith Hancock Lecture 2012- A case for pluralism in economics

Economics is unique among the social sciences in having a single monolithic mainstream, which is either unaware of or actively hostile to alternative approaches.

In this lecture Professor John King of La Trobe University will present a case for pluralism in economics, derived from the complex and ceaselessly changing nature of the world in which we live. Professor King argues that ‘Economics is unique among the social sciences in having a single monolithic mainstream, which is either unaware of or actively hostile to alternative approaches.’

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Keith Hancock Lecture 2010- The poor relation

What are the social sciences? What do they do? How are they practised in Australia? This lecture considers the place of the social sciences in the teaching and research conducted by Australian universities. The social sciences were constituted as academic disciplines to meet urgent needs as Australia fought the Second World War and prepared for […]

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Keith Hancock Lecture 2009- Wage inequality

Wage inequality has been increasing in most industrialized countries over the last three decades. There are, nonetheless, major differences across countries in terms of the timing and magnitude of the growth in inequality. A large number of explanations have been suggested for these observed changes, including technological progress and the computer revolution, labour market institutions […]

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