ESOC 2014

Pathways to Growth: The Reform Imperative

The Melbourne Institute and The Australian held their ninth Economic and Social Outlook Conference at the University of Melbourne on Thursday, 3rd and Friday, 4th July 2014.

Conference Program

About the Conference

A new government has taken over an economy that is under-performing. Employment is growing more slowly than the working-age population; both Commonwealth and state budgets are in deficit and the great boom in resource investment is starting to wind down.

Globally, both growth and world trade have been disappointing, frustrating the efforts of the industrialised world to close massive budget deficits.

There are no simple solutions to either the global or the local problems, but creative thinking about the issues it confronts can give the new government an edge.

Pursuing policy reform

The consistent thread running through our previous conferences has been that continued policy reform can enrich Australia’s overall well-being while providing opportunities for all.

ESOC is Australia’s premiere economic and social outlook policy event, a unique forum that brings together leading politicians, bureaucrats, academics and representatives from non-government organisations.

Invited speakers

  • Cabinet Ministers and Shadow Cabinet Ministers.
  • National and international experts.
  • Business leaders and representatives from community groups and trade unions.
  • Major figures from the Productivity Commission and other important organisations in Australia.
  • Leading researchers from the Melbourne Institute and the University of Melbourne.
  • Top journalists from The Australian.

Themes and issues

Issues explored by the two-day conference included budget sustainability, education, infrastructure, trade with Asia, aged care, federalism, the labour market and employment.

Climate change and energy, social disadvantage and exclusion, and the end of the age of entitlement were also key themes.


Grand Hyatt Melbourne
123 Collins Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3010

Previous conferences

The Economic and Social Outlook Conference is held by the Melbourne Institute and The Australian every 18 months.