The Australian Leadership Retreat 2014 took place from August 15 to 17  2014 on the One&Only Hayman Island.

The Retreat is the country’s premier gathering for business, political, academic and community leaders. It is a forum that promotes the fearless exchange of ideas concerning Australia among an exemplary cast representing myriad strands of domestic and international leadership. The Retreat has built its formidable reputation on substance over celebrity, and its durable appeal is only partly owed to the high-powered roll call of speakers and attendees.

The Retreat sets rather than follows the agenda through open, robust, and confidential debate, with a deliberate focus on the long term.

The program included keynote addresses, expert panels, a series of parallel workshops, thematic working lunches and a range of informal discussions.

Australia has enjoyed exceptional prosperity over recent decades, but economic and geopolitical changes are raising questions about how we can best position ourselves for the future. The Retreat will enable participants to look at what are the attributes which have made Australia great, how can we leverage these for the future and what are the threats?

The Retreat will look over the horizon in exploring issues impacting on Australia’s development, including demographic shifts in the workforce, technological changes and the geopolitical landscape and economic environment.

The program is designed to present participants, drawn from the highest levels of business and other sectors, with broader insights to inform their strategies, through a series of exclusive and confidential briefings and discussions led by a distinguished group of Australian and international speakers.


  • Virgin Australia
  • Etihad Airways
  • Accenture
  • Monash University
  • RMIT University
  • University of Melbourne

Supported by

  • Bank of Queensland


  • Maile Carnegie, Google Country Director Australia and New Zealand. Former Managing Director of Procter and Gamble Australia/New Zealand.
  • Hon Andrew Robb AO MP Minister for Trade and Investment. A former federal director of the Liberal Party, Robb had a successful business career before entering parliament.
  • Professor Paul Romer, an economist and policy entrepreneur, is a University Professor at NYU and director of the Marron Institute on Cities and the Urban Environment.
  • Douglas Zhihua Zeng is a senior economist at the World Bank. His areas of expertise include macroeconomics, innovation and Special Economic Zones.
  • Professor Daniel C. Esty is an environmental lawyer, with a joint appointment in the Yale Law School, and director of the Yale Center for Environmental Law & Policy.
  • Jonathan Medved is an investor, serial entrepreneur and one of Israel’s leading high tech venture capitalists. Medved is founder and CEO of OurCrowd, a crowd-funding hybrid that backs Israeli start-ups.
  • Dr Francis Gurry is Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). He is chair of the UN High-Level Committee on Management.
  • Professor David E. Bloom  is Professor of Economics and Demography at the Harvard School of Public Health, and director of the Program on the Global Demography of Aging.
  • Nik Gowing is the main presenter of BBC World News. During a distinguished thirty year career, Gowing has been deeply involved with major world news events.


  • Andrew Liveris, President, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The Dow Chemical Company. Co-Chair of President Obama’s Advanced Manufacturing Partnership steering committee.
  • Professor Dan Kahan, Professor of Law and Professor of Psych-ology at Yale Law School. International expert on cultural cognition, risk perception, communication and decision making.
  • Stian Westlake is Executive Director of research at Nesta, the UK’s innovation foundation. Worked in social venture capital. Author  founder of an innovative health venture. Previously at McKinsey in Silicon Valley and London.
  • Andrew Abercrombie, Following several years in property investment and tax consulting, founded the Flexirent business. Experi-enced commercial and tax lawyer.
  • Geraldine Chin Moody, Group Executive, People, Culture and Sustainability at Virgin Australia. Former COO, Baker & McKenzie Australia. In 2011, named Young Global Leader by the WEF.
  • Tessa Court is a leading technology entrepreneur. She co-founded Intelligence Bank, an award-winning online information manage-ment company. Previously managed the global expansion of Hitwise into Asia, the US and UK.
  • Dr Philip Lowe is the Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia. He is also Deputy Chairman of the Reserve Bank Board. Previously with the Bank for International Settle-ments working on financial stability issues.
  • Dr Jana Matthews is one of the world’s leading experts on entrepreneurial business growth. The author of seven books, she has been named one of 18 Women Business Gurus in the world.