State of the Nation 2018

State of the Nation 2018

Jun 25
State of the Nation is Australia's premier public policy discussion forum, bringing together decision makers and leaders from government, business, industry and community organisations for an intensive, day-and-a-half of presentations and discussions on Australia's future prosperity.


The Hon. Bill Shorten, Federal Leader of the Opposition

Event overview

How can we “shift the dial” on Australia’s economic and social reform agenda? How do we build resilience and lay the foundations for future prosperity?

Drawing on CEDA’s network and latest research, the annual State of the Nation brings together business, government and community leaders for important conversations on the issues that matter. 

We will discuss:
  • The current and future policy agenda in Canberra and across the nation;
  • How to build consensus on a new economic reform agenda;
  • Case studies of what works to improve economic and social outcomes; and 
  • Opportunities for new thinking and approaches in the digital age.
For more than 35 years CEDA has hosted its annual State of the Nation conference in Canberra, bringing together the best public policy minds from politics, business, academia and community organisations for open discussions on the key issues facing Australia's economic and social development. Described in the media as "Australia's premier policymaker conference", State of the Nation attracts ministers and shadow ministers, public servants, commentators and industry analysts for an insider's view of the Federal Government's policies.

Meet the keynote speaker

The Hon. Bill Shorten
Federal Leader of the Opposition

Session themes and confirmed speakers

Community attitudes to growth 

This session will discuss how to re-engage all Australians in the critical issues and policy challenges that will shape our future prosperity, informed by the findings of the research into community attitudes.

Creating a resilient workforce for the future

How do we ensure that we have the right skills, training and regulatory frameworks to adopt new technologies to make jobs more productive, safer and more meaningful, while realising opportunities in emerging industries?

Resilient regions: the regional communities that are working and why 

This session will discuss the key ingredients of successful regional economic development with those who have been most effective at delivering it on the ground including local mayors and entrepreneurs.

  • Jack Archer, Chief Executive, Regional Development Institute 

Collaboration and innovation for social change 

How can technology, innovative social ventures and cross-sectoral collaboration solve entrenched social issues that have challenged traditional government policy and program approaches?

  • Rosemary Addis, Chair, Impact Investing Australia and OECD Expert Group on Impact Investing
  • Cath Brokenborough, Justice Reinvestment Project Bourke NSW, Lendlease

Keynote dinner - State Treasurers’ Panel

Delivering policy outcomes for the community across a range of areas requires more effective Commonwealth-State collaboration and healthy budgets. This session will involve a discussion between Australia’s Treasurers on how governments face up to these challenges across the federation.

  • The Hon. Dominic Perrottet, Treasurer of NSW 

Empowering consumers in the new economy 

From the different perspectives of regulators, consumer advocates, business and technology firms, what are the critical tools to empower consumers in the digital age? What are the respective roles of technology and regulation?

The crossbench panel 

Support for Australia’s major parties continues to slide, and crossbench and minor parties are increasingly influential in our national politics. What is their vision for Australia, and what role can they play in re-engaging citizens in the critical policy issues ahead?

  • Senator Derryn Hinch, Senator for Victoria, Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party 

Supported by CEDA member

Major sponsor

Further sponsorship available:

Align your brand with CEDA and communicate with hard-to-reach business, government and policy leaders by sponsoring this event. Contact Sharon Braun on 03 9652 8409 or email

Accommodation options: