Sunday 22 Jul 2018 | 07:24 | SYDNEY
Sunday 22 Jul 2018 | 07:24 | SYDNEY

Ian Macfarlane: Australia in a changing financial world


Allan Gyngell

4 December 2008 12:30

The Institute last night hosted its fourth annual Lowy Lecture on Australia in the World. This is our major public event for the year and the idea is to get a distinguished figure to reflect not just on the changing world but on Australia’s interaction with it.

The preceding three lectures each dealt with a different aspect of Australia’s international engagement: In 2005, John Howard talked about foreign policy (still one of the best speeches he delivered on the subject); in 2006 the distinguished Australian strategic thinker, Professor Robert O’Neill, looked at international security; and last year the Australian-born biologist Lord Robert May spoke about global environmental issues. 

So at the end of 2008, where else could we look but to the global economy? Ian Macfarlane, the former Governor of the Reserve Bank (and Lowy Institute Board member) delivered a terrific, measured, insight into the global financial crisis to more than 500 people. You can read or listen to his lecture here. I was particularly taken by his comment on calls from the financial community for more self regulation: 'As one astute commentator observed, self regulation is to regulation as self importance is to importance'.