Cutting the financial sector down to size: the brave new economic world

Date: 22/07/2009

The global financial sector needs to be cut down to size and constrained in ways that would prevent future economic crises from developing, says Professor John Quiggin, Australian Research Council Federation Fellow in Economics and Political Science, University of Queensland.

Professor Quiggin will elaborate on his vision for a post Global Financial Crisis economy that is robust and stable in a special public forum to be convened later this week by the Whitlam Institute and the University of Western Sydney School of Economics and Finance.

Professor Quiggin has recently been one of the group of six economists calling for a decisive and comprehensive change to Australia's financial system.

"The challenge facing governments and regulators is to construct a new global financial system and a regulatory architecture strong enough to prevent a recurrence of the bubble and meltdown that has largely destroyed the existing unregulated system," says Professor Quiggin.

The public will have a unique opportunity to hear first hand the bold thoughts of Professor Quiggin at the final session of the 'Getting to Grips with the Economy' series on Thursday 23 July 2009. The session also features leading economist Professor Steve Keen from the University of Western Sydney, and Dr Guy Debelle, a Reserve Bank Assistant Governor.

This session provides the opportunity for thought and debate about what awaits the Australian economy beyond the GFC - whether we're on the right track, or whether we need to pursue new options for strengthening Australia's economy. It's a chance to consider where we want to be and what type of economy we want when we emerge from the GFC tunnel.

Eric Sidoti, Director of the Whitlam Institute, says it's a rare opportunity to hear expert opinions - unfiltered and unedited - in a live forum and to be able to question the experts directly.

"The global financial crisis is never out of the headlines but few of us truly understand the detail. The conflicting information can also make it difficult to see a way forward," says Mr Sidoti.

"This forum provides a chance for the public to access the information directly, to question the experts and to ultimately engage in the debate as better informed citizens."

This is the second series of public forums organised by the Whitlam Institute, following up on the popular Energy Security discussion series in 2008.

The Whitlam Institute within the University of Western Sydney is a leading national centre for the dialogue and debate on public policy - it is a bipartisan think-tank for the people, working to ignite debate, strengthen discussion and enrich policy development in Australia.

Professor Quiggin's presentation follows up on An Agenda for Social Democracy, an essay he wrote for the 'Perspectives' series, which was commissioned by the Whitlam Institute within the University of Western Sydney earlier this year.

WHAT: 'Getting to grips with the economy' - public information series
WHEN: Session 3, Thursday 23 July, 2009, 5pm to 7pm
WHERE: Riverside Theatres, cnr Church and Market Streets, Parramatta
DETAILS: $10 per session (incl. GST)
BOOKINGS: or ph: 02 8839 3399
More information and school bookings: or ph: (02) 9685 9187



Senior Media Officer

Paul Grocott
02 9678 7083, 0406 429 304