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John Menadue Orations

The John Menadue Oration is CPD’s flagship event, named in honour of our founding Chairperson John Menadue AO, who was Australia’s top civil servant under Prime Ministers Gough Whitlam and Malcolm Fraser, before becoming Australia’s Ambassador to Japan and CEO of Qantas.

The inaugural Oration was held in 2017 to celebrate CPD’s 10th anniversary. It was delivered by former Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa, at the State Library of Victoria in Melbourne, who addressed the question, “Can Democracy Deliver?”.

In 2018, CPD presented the second Oration at Carriageworks in Sydney, featuring the Italian-American economist Professor Mariana Mazzucato who addressed the question, “Can the State Deliver?”. Professor Mazzucato spoke to over 2000 people in Melbourne and Sydney as part of her tour.

Most recently, Professor Megan Davis became the first Australian to deliver the Oration, addressing the question, “Can Australia Deliver?” The 2020 Oration was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Can a Wellbeing Economy Deliver? | John Menadue Oration by Sophie Howe | April 2023

Curtis Moore - April 2023

As Australia pursues wellbeing in economic decision-making, the 2023 John Menadue Oration provided an audience with Sophie Howe, the inaugural Future Generations Commissioner of Wales.

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Can Australia Deliver? | John Menadue Oration by Professor Megan Davis | October 2020

communications - October 2020

2020 John Menadue Oration by Professor Megan Davis Can Australia Deliver? The third instalment of CPD’s flagship event, named after our founding Chairperson John Menadue AO, reflected the world in which it took place. With Zoom meetings a way of life due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 John Menadue...

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John Menadue Oration 2020

communications - September 2020

We are delighted to announce that we have rescheduled the John Menadue Oration for 2020 with Professor Megan Davis. Professor Megan Davis will deliver CPD’s third John Menadue Oration on Thursday 15 October 2020. You can register for the event here. Professor Davis will speak on the theme: ‘Can Australia Deliver?’ The...

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Special Covid-19 Roundtable

communications - April 2020

On 30 March, CPD convened a group of leaders from health, business, policy and philanthropy to discuss Australia’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic. We held this roundtable virtually, in lieu of our 2020 John Menadue Oration, which was to be delivered by Megan Davis on the topic “Can Australia deliver?”....

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John Menadue Oration 2020: postponed

communications - February 2020

As I’m sure you will understand, we have decided to postpone the third John Menadue Oration with Professor Megan Davis, that was to have taken place on 30 March in Sydney. This is a natural consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic and a decision fully supported by our hosts, MinterEllison, our...

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Can Democracy Deliver? | John Menadue Oration by Marty Natalegawa | November 2017

communications - November 2017

CPD’s Inaugural Annual John Menadue Oration – “Can Democracy Deliver?” Remarks by Dr. R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa[1] Melbourne, 2 November 2017 Listen to an audio recording of the full oration here. “Can democracy deliver? As one who has traversed Indonesia’s now more than a decade-long transformative democratic journey – such that today it...

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