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The Peter Karmel Lecture in Public Policy honours the late Professor Peter Karmel AC, CBE (1922–2008), who had a profound impact on higher education and public policy in Australia over many decades. Professor Karmel was President of the Academy from 1987–1990. The lecture, which was presented for the first time in 2013, is intended to provoke public discussion of a particular policy of an Australian government, the policy-making process itself, or comparisons of policies or policy processes found in Australia with those found in other jurisdiction. The Academy therefore welcomes attendance at the Peter Karmel Lecture by policy makers government agency staff and the general public. The inaugural Peter Karmel Lecture in Public Policy was presented by Professor Gary Banks AO, FASSA, Dean of the Australia and New Zealand School of Government on the theme ‘Public inquiries and public policy: some reflections’.

Can Good Policy Rescue Politics?

Australia has a strong history of good policies built on well-researched evidence, but in this ‘post truth’ world, it is clear that evidence-based policy making has fallen on hard times. It’s widely accepted that good policy should be based on the careful analysis of the very best evidence. Instead, populist, short term policy-making seems to be the […]

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Public inquiries and public policy: some reflections

Public policy can be hard, both technically (what to do?) and politically (how to get it done?). Australian governments have often made use of public inquiries or reviews to assist them in these respects. The results, however, have been mixed. Based on theory and evidence, including insights gained at first hand, Professor Gary Banks addressed two key questions: Why might public inquiries contribute to better policy outcomes? And what determines their ‘success’? With much contention surrounding recent policy initiatives, and links being drawn to current electoral fortunes, the inaugural Peter Karmel Lecture in Public Policy proved to be highly topical, and was well recieved.

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Creating an Overarching Retirement Income Policy Framework

2015 Peter Karmel Panel Discussion is a Free Public Event, however, booking is essential.

The Peter Karmel Panel Discussion is being organised in conjunction with Committee for Sustainable Retirement Incomes (CSRI), as part of their two day event: Sustainable Retirement Incomes Leadership Forum, on 2nd and 3rd June 2015 at Hyatt Hotel Canberra. (The two day CSRI event is at a charge)

Link to the CSRI Event: CSRI event

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Why hasn’t the mental health of Australians improved?

Despite two decades of investment in improving mental health services, the mental health of Australians has not improved. This lecture argues that we have used a one-pronged approach to improving mental health, where a two-pronged one is required. There are two broad ways of decreasing the number of people with mental disorders in the population. One is to reduce the number developing mental disorders (prevention) and the other is to shorten the length of time people have a disorder once it has developed (treatment). In Australia, as well as other countries, we have invested primarily in the treatment prong, but neglected the prevention prong. It is argued that the next wave of mental health reform in Australia needs to focus on the second prong. Prevention of mental disorders can be carried out in many settings, including families, schools, tertiary institutions and workplaces. Some possible elements of a national prevention strategy will be outlined.

An article based on this lecture has been published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry.

Professor Jorm’s interview Radio Australia Interview Link.

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Contact Information

Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia

  • Location: 26 Balmain Crescent, Acton, ACT 2601
  • Postal: GPO Box 1956, Canberra, ACT 2601
  • +61 .2 62491788
  • +61 .2 62474335

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