Upcoming Alumni Events


Wednesday 12 November 2014

Earlier this year in the UK, an independent Commission on Wellbeing and Policy published its report with the objective of explaining the concept of wellbeing and to suggest how it can be used to improve policy making.

The Chair of the Commission, Gus O’Donnell will discuss the Commission’s report, and review its findings and some of its implications for policy making, especially in human and social services. The lecture will also explore the relationship between wellbeing, measures of wellbeing and the use of behavioural economics as a key policy instrument.

Gus O'Donnell is the Chairman of Frontier Economics, a Strategic Advisor to TD, the second largest Canadian bank, non-Executive Director at Brookfield Asset Management, a visiting Professor at the London School of Economics (LSE) and University College London (UCL) and a member of the Economist Trust. He is also Chair of the Advisory Board of the Behavioural Insights Team at the Cabinet Office.

Gus was the Cabinet Secretary and Head of the British Civil Service from 2005-2011 under Prime Ministers Blair, Brown and Cameron. In 2010, Gus oversaw the introduction of the first coalition government since the Second World War. Before that, he was Permanent Secretary of Her Majesty's Treasury from 2002-2005. He has served on the Boards of the IMF and the World Bank. Gus studied Economics at Warwick University and Nuffield College, Oxford, before lecturing at Glasgow University and then began a long career in the Treasury.

He was knighted in 2005 and was appointed to the House of Lords in 2012 where he sits as a crossbencher (i.e. is not affiliated to any political party). Most recently he chaired a group which produced an influential report on Wellbeing and Policy. In 2014, he was elected as an Honorary Fellow of the British Academy.

To RSVP to this event visit the Sydney Ideas website.