From the CEO - May 2021

At the moment of writing, I’ve just walked into the office from one of our Food for Thought Leaders Luncheons on the important issue of aged care. Hosted by Corrs Chambers Westgarth, the conversation was opened by Alan Churley and Rachel King with a keynote address by Graeme Prior, CEO of aged care provider Hall & Prior.

The benefit of these events, which are held under Chatham House Rules, is to hear from industry leaders about issues of relevance to the future of Greater Perth. The intimacy and confidentiality of the environment in which the events are held encourages discussion and prompts attendees to ask questions. In this case, participation was driven by both personal and professional interest.

In 2017, we provided an overview of the ageing trends in Australia and Western Australia in our FACTBase Bulletin No. 56, which is worth reading.

In April, we released the 75th FACTBase Bulletin, which examines the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on Greater Perth and Western Australia. You can download the bulletin and watch a summary of the key findings on our website.

Our advice and comments in relation to COVID-19 impacts on the economy and liveability of our CBD have been sought out by the media and covered by The Australian and The Australian Financial Review. It has been pleasing to provide our perspective on the different impacts the pandemic had in Greater Perth and Western Australia versus other mainland capitals and states.

This bulletin also marks a significant milestone in our research alliance with The University of Western Australia (UWA). Since the first agreement was signed in 2008, researchers have examined many elements of Greater Perth; the results of which create a trusted evidence-base for policy and decision-makers.

In celebrating the occasion, Professor Amit Chakma, the Vice-Chancellor of UWA, commented: ‘The FACTBase research program is crucial to measuring Perth’s liveability and connectedness. Collectively with the Committee for Perth, the research findings are supporting the growth of Perth’s competitiveness on a global scale by providing evidence-based insights on our city’s economic, social, demographic and political character.’

During April, I was delighted to participate in CEO Voice, a lunch hosted by the Australian Institute of Management WA (AIMWA), with the Business Editor of The West Australian. The topic of discussion was business and the newly elected State Government.

We have finalised our submission on the Draft Medium Density Code, which offers our support in the main but cautions the State Government about potential cost increases that could affect housing affordability. We thank all the members of the Reshaping Working Group who provided insight and feedback.

Keeping with planning related issues, it was great to spend time with the Planning students at UWA to discuss the influential role the Committee for Perth plays in urban governance.

Last month, we were pleased to also host Lily Brazel former Australian athlete for the Women’s Hockey team and founder of Stature Clothing at our Executive Women’s Leadership Forum. Lily discussed her career and life journey. At just 26 years of age, Lily has already faced many highs and lows - her presentation, as with all of our speakers in this long-running series, was honest and heartfelt. I have mentored Lily for the last 12 months and have been proud of the way she has handled herself through a very challenging period.

Finally, Promoting Perth, a seven-part series published by Business News and supported by the Committee for Perth, was launched last month. Our Hashtag Perth project found that as locals we are not as good as we should be at promoting Perth as a place to live, work, study, invest and visit.

In Boorloo Kworp ‘Perth is good’ report, Business News took on the action to give us the tools to do better. Promoting Perth will substantiate the claim that Perth punches above its economic and intellectual weight, and introduce you to the innovators, entrepreneurs and businesses that make it so.

There are also plenty of activities planned for May.

Our Future of Work project report is in the draft stages and I look forward to sharing the key findings and shaping the recommendations with our members in mid-May. Also underway is the final FACTBase Bulletin for the project, which will be our first with researchers at Edith Cowan University (ECU).

Professor Tim Bentley and his colleagues at ECU are writing up an analysis of the role of leadership in maintaining employee wellbeing and performance under COVID-19 restrictions. The insights will inform the evolution in leadership required for the hybrid model of working both at home and in the office.

We will be holding a Food for Thought Leaders Luncheon with guest speaker Kevin Brown, CEO of Perth Airport as part of our COVID Recovery & Resilience series. We will also launch a new webinar series Lunch & Learn, which will be open to all to participate.

The kick-off event will be a presentation on the findings of the 2021 Perth Perceptions Survey, which we commission Ipsos to undertake for us every three years. I’m always fascinated by people’s views across Perth and Peel about living, working and playing in the region.

Until next month,

Marion Fulker

CEO & Adjunct Senior Research Fellow at UWA

Left: Marion Fulker at April’s Mentor Walks; Top right: Marion Fulker, Graeme Prior, Rachael King and Alan Churley at the Food for Thought Leaders Luncheon; Bottom right: Marion Fulker, Lily Brazel and event attendees at the Executive Women's Leadership Forum.

Acknowledgement of Country

The Committee For Perth acknowledges the traditional custodians throughout Western Australia and their continuing connection to the land, waters and community. We pay our respects to all members of the Aboriginal communities and their cultures; and to Elders both past and present.