Richard Denniss to deliver 16th Manning Clark Lecture

Dr Richard Denniss, Executive Director of The Australia Institute, delivered the 16th Manning Clark Lecture.

Tuesday 3rd March, 6pm at Manning Clark Centre Lecture Theatre 1, Australian National University, Canberra

Past Manning Clark Lecturers have included former Prime Ministers, High Court Justices, and internationally renowned authors (see list below).

In his Manning Clarke Oration, Dr Richard Denniss asked: What will Australia be when it grows up?

While such questions are often asked of our children they are rarely asked of our country. This lack of inquiry about our future could reflect widespread acceptance that rapid population growth and economic growth constitute our ‘growing up’. Or the relative silence on our future might also reflect the narrowness of political leaders whose vision for our future is confined to the size of the budget deficit. 

In the 100 years since Manning Clark was born Australia has changed dramatically. But while change is one of the few constants in our history, modern economic and political debate is mired in efforts to maintain the status quo, at least when it comes to the interests of powerful groups. Efforts to tackle climate change, for example, are resisted on the basis that jobs may be lost. This excuse for inaction is made despite the fact that, over the last century, millions of jobs have been lost in industries ranging from whaling to photo development laboratories. Change is the constant.

Manning Clark Lecturers

2015 – Richard Denniss

2014 – Geoff Gallop

2013 – Germaine Greer

2012 – Ramona Koval

2011 – Gareth Evans

2010 – Chris Masters

2009 – Robyn Archer

2008 – Julian Burnside QC

2007 – Barry Jones

2006 – Frank Brennan

2005 – Hugh Mackay

2004 – Sir Gustav Nossal

2003 – Judy Davis

2002 – Paul Keating

2001 – Justice Michael Kirby

2000 (inaugural) – Janet Holmes a Court


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