The ADC Future Summit 2012 took place on May 14th-15th 2012 at the Grand Hyatt in Melbourne.

Over 260 established and emering leaders from the business, government, academia and community sectors attended the Summit to explore the theme of ‘Volatility and opportunities for renewal’ over an intensive, two-day program.

Highlights of the Summit included a lively Oxford-style debate on the motion ‘This house believes that financial engineering is the solution to the problems it has caused’; an entertaining keynote address by Gabe Zichermann, CEO, Gamification Co and Dopamine Inc on ‘Gamification’ at the Summit dinner; and a keynote series on ‘Intergenerational dynamics and the Methuselah challenge’ with Professor Sarah Harper, Director, Oxford Institute of Population Ageing and Dr Aubrey de Grey, Chief Science Officer, SENS Foundation.

Attendees also took part in a wide range of panel discussions and symposiums, intimate ‘nightcap’ conversations with key guest speakers, and smaller group discussions. There was a high level of engagement between participants and speakers via social media, with participants submitting questions and comments during several plenary sessions moderated by International Broadcaster Nik Gowing.

The 2012 Australian Leadership Awards were presented at the Summit, and for the first time the successful ADC Investors Circle Breakfast Series was brought to the ADC Future Summit.

Speakers for 2012

  • David Murray AO, Senior Advisor, Credit Suisse
  • Dr Hugh Bradlow, Chief Technology Officer, Telstra
  • Dr Philip Lowe, Deputy Governor, Reserve Bank Australia
  • Nik Gowing, International Broadcaster
  • Professor Ian Harper, Partner, Deloitte Access Economics and Sidney Myer Chair of Commerce & Business Administration, Melbourne Business School
  • Saul Eslake, Chief Economist, Bank of America Merrill Lynch Australia
  • Senator Bob Brown, Parliament of Australia
  • Professor Amitabh Mattoo, Director, Australia India Institute
  • Jackie Korhonen, Chief Executive Officer & Managing Director, Infosys Australia & New Zealand
  • Craig Drummond, Chief Executive Officer & Country Head, Bank of America Merrill Lynch
  • Dr Aubrey de Grey, Chief Science Officer, SENS Foundation
  • Professor Sarah Harper, Director, Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, Oxford University
  • Professor Steve Rayner, Director, Institute for Science, Innovation and Society, Oxford University
  • Gabe Zichermann, CEO Gamification CO & Dopamine Inc.
  • Annabel Crabb, Chief Political Writer, ABC Online
  • Malcolm Thornton, Investment Director, Starfish Ventures
  • Richard Brandweiner, Group Executive, Income and Multi Sector, Perpetual Investments
  • Robert Woods, Chief Executive, Funds Management, Challenger Limited
  • Dr Jeffrey Carmichael AO, Chief Executive Officer, Promontory Financial Group Australasia
  • Luca Belgiorno-Nettis AM, Joint Managing Director, Transfield Holdings
  • Andrew Butterworth, President Australia, New Zealand & Pacific Islands, Alcatel-Lucent

Theme for 2012: Volatility and Opportunities for Renewal.

Today’s world is fragile and uncertain. Our economic and political systems are under increasing strain, and resource consumption and technological developments are challenging the human relationship with nature. Amidst this volatility arise opportunities for renewal and improvement. Rather than advocating wholesale change or replacement, the idea of renewal promotes the restoration and redefinition of the fundamental values, aspirations, rights and entitlements underpinning existing systems. Through the process of renewal, we will be better positioned to adjust, repair or transform our systems appropriately.

We applied this thematic framework to three key areas:

Approaches to generating prosperity — we examined the global and national economy, exploring key risks and trends and strategies for strengthening the economic engine. We also looked at investment strategies and the building of pathways for entrepreneurship; as well as assessing prospects for sustained prosperity through the sharing of wealth between generations.

Engagement and political purpose — we scrutinised the effectiveness of prevailing capitalist and democratic models, the role of the nation state and its formulation of a national agenda, and changes in civic engagement. Throughout, we strived to look beyond divisive categorizations and thinking.

Our relationship with nature — we reviewed our place in the world and the ever-evolving nature/human boundary, particularly in terms of resource use and the ethical implications of environmental and material manipulation and technological breakthroughs.