Future Shapers

Bringing together the capable, innovative and engaged next generation of Australian leaders.

Bringing together the capable, innovative and engaged next generation of Australian leaders.

Future Shapers connects the next generation of Australia’s leaders from Government, business, research, advocacy, social enterprise and the media.

A series of unique, tailored activities will be offered to each participant that will provide them with real opportunities to make a difference. The forum’s core activities will expose participants to leading thinkers from across the country and around the world and will equip them with tools to imagine and create a future of their choosing.

Future Shapers is an initiative of the Sir Roland Wilson Foundation, Australian National University and is supported by the ANU Crawford Leadership Forum.

Key Dates

  • 26th June: The Future of the Internet (Vinton G. Cerf in the Crawford Oration)


The Future Shapers two day program features a series of thought provoking discussions, hands on workshops, intimate dinners with current leaders and meetings tailored to our participants interests and needs.

The Sir Roland Wilson Foundation

The Sir Roland Wilson Foundation was established with a donation from the Wilson family estate to the Australian National University. The Foundation’s purpose is to honour his contribution to the nation by advancing the study and development of public policy in Australia, its regions and the rest of the world.



Professor Genevieve Bell
Professor and Director, Autonomy, Agency and Assurance Institute The Australian National University

Professor Bell is the Director of the 3A Institute, Florence Violet McKenzie Chair, and a Distinguished Professor at the Australian National University (ANU) as well as a Vice President and Senior Fellow at Intel Corporation. Prof Bell is a cultural anthropologist, technologist and futurist best known for her work at the intersection of cultural practice and technology development. Prof Bell heads the newly established Autonomy, Agency and Assurance (3A) Institute in building a new applied science around the management of artificial intelligence, data, technology and their impact on humanity.

James Deverell
Director, CSIRO Futures

James is the Director of CSIRO Futures, the strategic advisory arm of Australia’s national science agency. He leads a team that builds on CSIRO’s deep research expertise to help clients create sustainable growth and competitive advantage by harnessing science, technology and innovation. As a trusted advisor, he works with senior decision makers in some of Australia’s largest companies and government to develop evidence-based strategies to address significant long-term opportunities and challenges. James has over 20 years of experience leading high-impact strategy projects with a focus on the role that science, technology and innovation play in creating competitive advantage and sustainable growth.

Professor Sharon Friel
Director, School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet) and Professor of Health Equity

Sharon Friel is Director of the the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet) and Professor of Health Equity, Australian National University. She is also Director of the Menzies Centre for Health Policy ANU. In 2014 she was named by her international peers as one of the world’s most influential female leaders in global health. She is also the Co-Director of the NHMRC Centre for Research Excellence in the Social Determinants of Health Equity.

Dr Ken Henry
Chair, National Australia Bank

Dr Ken Henry has been one of Australia’s most outstanding public policy contributors, especially as Secretary to Treasury from 2001 – 2011. He was also a member of the Board of the Reserve Bank of Australia and a member of the Board of Taxation during this period. He was made a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2007 and received the Centenary Medal in 2001. He is Co-Chair of NAB’s Indigenous Advisory Group.

Kon Karapanagiotidis
CEO and Founder of Asylum Seeker Resource Centre

Kon Karapanagiotidis is the CEO and founder of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC) and a fierce advocate for the rights of people seeking asylum, refugees and Indigenous Australians. Kon is also a human rights lawyer, social worker, Board Member for Children’s Ground and philanthropist. Today, the ASRC is the largest independent human rights organisation in Australia, and has supported and empowered over 12,000 people seeking asylum and refugees in the last 15 years. Kon was awarded a Churchill Fellowship in 2010 and an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) in 2011.

Melissa Leong
food writer, media consultant, television presenter, stylist and cookbook editor

A background in digital advertising working with brands such as Coca Cola, Nokia and LG gave Melissa her start in the food industry as a freelance food critic before moving into PR, Marketing and Digital Media consulting. Melissa has worked with some of the highest profile and most respected names in the Australian food scene. In 2009, Melissa co-founded the young gun hospitality group Toys Collective alongside leading chef Morgan McGlone, which was recognised and awarded for its contribution to industry innovation. Melissa’s work as a television host and judge can be seen on SBS Television’s The Chef’s Line.

Jessica Matthews
Distinguished Fellow Carnegie Endowment for Peace

Jessica Tuchman Mathews is a distinguished fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. She served as Carnegie’s president for 18 years. Before her appointment in 1997, her career included posts in both the executive and legislative branches of government, in management and research in the nonprofit arena, and in journalism and science policy. Matthews co-founded the Surface Transportation Policy Project and is an elected fellow of the American Philosophical Society. Since 2001 she has served as a director of SomaLogic, a leading biotech firm in the breakthrough field of proteomics. She is also a director of HanesBrands Inc. and a member of the governing board of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

Daniel Moss
Bloomberg View

Daniel Moss is a columnist for Bloomberg View, the commentary and opinion pages of Bloomberg News. Immediately prior to that, he was executive editor for global economics. Moss joined Bloomberg in 1994 and led teams in Asia, Europe and the U.S. A regular contributor to Bloomberg Television, he is co-host of Benchmark, a weekly economics podcast. Moss is a graduate of the Australian National University. He is a member of the Asia Society, Aspen Institute, the Economic Club of New York and the National Association for Business Economics. He is a director of ANU Foundation USA, which supports the activities of his alma mater.

Dr Martin Parkinson
Secretary, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

Martin Parkinson commenced as Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in January 2016. Prior to this Martin was a professional Non-Executive Director, serving on a number of boards including ORICA, O’Connell Street Associates, and the German-Australian Chamber of Industry and Commerce. From March 2011 to December 2014, Martin served as Australia’s Treasury Secretary and before this he served as the inaugural Secretary of the Department of Climate Change from its establishment in December 2007. Martin is a member of the Male Champions of Change and was made a Companion in the Order of Australia (AC) in 2017.

Paul Ronalds
CEO Save the Children

Paul Ronalds is one of Australia’s leading voices on poverty eradication and international development. Paul joined Save the Children Australia as Chief Executive Officer in July 2013 and is responsible for leading the organisation to increase its impact for vulnerable children and their families. Prior to joining Save the Children, Paul was First Assistant Secretary responsible for the Office of Work and Family in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. In the NGO sector, Paul worked for World Vision Australia as Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Director of Strategy. He was also Chief Operating Officer of Urban Seed, an innovative and dynamic NGO that provides a range of services to marginalised people in Melbourne’s inner city.

Olympia Yarger
Managing Director, GoTerra

Olympia is the founder and CEO of GoTerra. Based in Canberra with a global vision, GoTerra is committed to creating solutions for waste management, redefining the culture of food waste within our communities and providing sustainable and stable livestock feed options for our farmers. It is an innovative business which turns food waste into livestock feed using insects, producing a product that is comparable to fish and soybean meals. Olympia has a wealth of experience in communications and marketing as well as sustainable development.



Canberra, ACT

The nation’s capital is not only home to the nation’s leaders, but is also home to some of the best food, coffee and attractions that the country has to offer. Participants will be able to experience these as part of the program and will be able to explore many more.
Winter in Canberra can be a glorious season with crisp, clear sunny days. Be warned though, it can be very chilly and it’s not uncommon for the mercury to drop below zero in the early morning and late evening, so remember to pack your woollies.


General enquiries

Jennifer Andersson
Future Shapers Convener
+61 2 6125 4938

Media enquiries

ANU Media
+61 2 6125 7979