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Welcome to the Te Waihanga ‘Infrastructure for a Better Future’ podcast – a series where we talk to experts both from here and overseas about the infrastructure challenges we are facing. The episodes focus on the key areas of Rautaki Hanganga o Aotearoa – New Zealand’s Infrastructure Strategy. Find out more about the strategy at strategy.tewaihanga.govt.nz
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A Better Future For All

Griffith University/HOTA, Home of the Arts

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Presented by Griffith University and HOTA, Home of the Arts. This series of critical conversations is helmed by master broadcaster and journalist Kerry O'Brien. Intimate discussions with influential commentators, business leaders, scholars and authors to understand the intersection of ideas and actions affecting our daily lives.
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The rising cost of food is impacting on people around the world, with up to 1 billion people, who live on the edge of poverty in 30 countries, at risk of hunger because of food shortages. This lecture series explored the causes and impact of the global food crisis, covering food policy, malnutrition and the importance of diet and nutrition in healthy minds and bodies.
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A podcast about eating better for ourselves and for the planet. We interview change-makers, consult with medical authorities and journalists, and highlight innovative restaurants and food services. Lee Schneider anchors Season 3, focusing on how restaurants will survive in pandemic times. We are part of the FutureX Network.
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The Better World Challenge's sole focus is to educate, empower, and inspire the next generation of leaders who want to make the world a better place. In the amount of time it takes you to commute to work, class, or cook a meal; you'll feel inspired about the change you can make in your community. The Better World Challenge Podcast: Conversations Creating Change. 🌎🎙🗣
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show series
 
How does local government debt finance infrastructure? What are the options and what situations should they be used? In this podcast episode, Te Waihanga Senior Communications Advisor Shelly Biswell speaks to Principal Economist Graham Campbell about our recent research that looks into if local government is debt constrained. We unpack this researc…
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In this episode of Infrastructure for a better future, we look at the Carbon Neutral Government Programme, which aims to accelerate emissions reduction in the public sector. In particularly, we look at the work being undertaken by the Ministry of Education. As part of this programme, the Ministry has baselined its emissions across two and a half th…
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Population growth is one of the biggest drivers of infrastructure services. More people, means more transport connections, more housing and more jobs. Last year, Infrastructure Victoria published research titled Choosing Victoria’s future that sketches out five urban form scenarios and makes the case that when it comes to an urban footprint, we hav…
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We know that teams that reflect our communities can listen better, understand better and better engage with our communities, and together can build better more resilient infrastructure. So why is it that only 11% of infrastructure workers identify as women? In this episode, Te Waihanga Director - Leadership Nicola Richardson speaks to Stacey Mendon…
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How are researchers currently seeking to understand the role that indigenous communities play in infrastructure development including post-disaster recovery? How has engineering teaching changed to consider these issues? As part of our research into Māori engagement in infrastructure, Clare Sinnott, Writer and Researcher at Te Waihanga spoke to Dr …
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Is our critical infrastructure vulnerable? What does New Zealand need to do to ensure that it has the planning capabilities to effectively deal with natural disasters and other events when they occur? In this episode, Te Waihanga Senior Communications Advisor Simon Thomas speaks to Chair of the New Zealand Lifelines Council Roger Fairclough about t…
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In this instalment of Griffith University’s conversation series, A Better Future for All, distinguished journalist and author Kerry O’Brien talks with Professor Kristy Muir, CEO of the Paul Ramsay Foundation, about the role of philanthropy in realising important social outcomes. Philanthropic partnerships are proving pivotal in improving social out…
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The future is uncertain. While we can do our best to predict what will happen next month, next year, or fifty years from now, we can’t be sure what will actually happen. In this episode, Te Waihanga Senior Economist Nadine Dodge catch up with Brad Singh, to learn about how the transport team at Wellington City Council is dealing with uncertainty in…
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While the future is uncertain, when done well, corridor protection – designating or acquiring land for infrastructure in advance of when it’s needed – can have benefits for day and tomorrow. In this episode of ‘Infrastructure for a better future’, Nadine Dodge, Senior Economist – Strategy at Te Waihanga talks with KiwiRail representatives David Gor…
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For Griffith University's A Better Future for All series, in partnership with HOTA, Home of the Arts, Kerry O'Brien welcomed Senator the Honourable Penny Wong Faced with deteriorating relationships in the Pacific and increasing tension with our biggest trading partner, China, Penny Wong has spent her first year as Foreign Minister travelling at whi…
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With no presence in Australia’s mainland government, the country’s conservative political forces face their most significant challenge in years: winning back the trust and reversing the drift in its voting base. Queensland Opposition leader David Crisafulli and veteran journalist Kerry O’Brien discuss the vision he has for the future of Queensland …
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Large-scale and complex infrastructure projects, often take longer and cost more than expected, but some places seem to get better results than others. In our latest podcast, we take a global view of infrastructure project costs and why certain places are better at delivering infrastructure on time and in budget. Peter Nunns Director - Economics at…
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Te Waihanga Principal Advisor - Strategy, Nik Green recently spoke to Senior Advisor - Delivery Christian Gamst about stormwater and resilience. This is part of our work to understand the severity of the January 2023 Auckland Anniversary weekend storm resulting in stormwater flooding in Auckland, the impact of the storm on Auckland’s infrastructure…
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Artificial intelligence has the capacity to completely transform the world, changing everything from interplanetary travel to cooking perfect pasta. But what are the costs: If everything changes through AI, how will we deal with the downside? The latest instalment of Griffith University’s Better Future for All series sees journalist Kerry O’Brien e…
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With more than 70 million downloads, Hedley Thomas’s The Teacher’s Pet is the global podcast phenomenon that helped take down a killer. In the latest instalment of Griffith University’s A Better Future for All series, Kerry O’Brien talks to the award-winning investigative journalist and podcaster about the power of audio storytelling, and how his w…
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Griffith University’s A Better Future For All draws back the curtain on David Williamson AO, the most prolific playwright in the history of Australian theatre. His works have captivated audiences for more than half a century and he has made an indelible mark on the creative world both nationally and internationally. Last year David published his me…
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Join Kerry O’Brien in conversation with two outstanding leaders in the field of mental health education and treatment: Hugh van Cuylenburg and Professor Patrick McGorry AO. Australia is in the grip of an epidemic of anxiety, particularly affecting children and young adults. According to government health figures, 3.3 million Australians suffer from…
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Kerry O’Brien in conversation with one of Australia’s most well-respected journalists Leigh Sales AM. With 27 years at the helm of the ABC’s 7:30 between them, the pair discussed life at the pinnacle of daily television current affairs. Leigh talked about the big historic moments she’s covered, the prime ministers who have come and gone, the interv…
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Acclaimed filmmaker and producer Rachel Perkins is best known for her work promoting and showcasing Indigenous stories and culture through film and television. But, born into a culture of Indigenous activism, her reach and impact extend well beyond the screen. Heralding the 2023 return of Griffith University’s conversation series, A Better Future f…
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We need our cities to be attractive and inclusive places to live. An important aspect of achieving this is by ensuring our infrastructure services are accessible to everyone. Two Auckland Transport advisory groups – the Public Transport Advisory Group (PTAG) and the Capital Project Advisory Group (CTAG) have been true catalysts for change and have …
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A recent report commissioned by Te Waihanga looks at how and why the consenting system needs to change for Aotearoa to deliver on it's net-zero targets. Sapere Research Group completed the research. Ross Copland, Chief Executive at Te Waihanga spoke to Corina Comendant, Senior Managing Economist at Sapere about the findings of the report.…
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A changing macro-economic and geopolitical environment can act as either a headwind or tailwind to better infrastructure. In this complex world how does Aotearoa New Zealand make sure it can deliver successful infrastructure projects? How, and to what, do we shift our priorities as a small country at the bottom of the pacific? How do we compete for…
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To solve New Zealand's infrastructure challenges we need to deliver quality infrastructure at an affordable price. So, how much does it cost to build infrastructure in New Zealand? And how do we compare with other high-income countries? That's the subject of a report that we published last month, entitled ‘The lay of the land: Benchmarking New Zeal…
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Earlier in 2022, a culvert replacement project won the award for Excellence in Environment and Sustainability, Best Public Works Project ($2–5 million) and Supreme Asset Management Excellence at the 2022 IPWEA (Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia) New Zealand Asset Management Excellence Awards. At first glance, it might be hard to und…
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A recent report by Te Waihanga highlights the importance of productivity growth in reducing construction costs and addressing workforce demands. In this episode, the authors of the report, Hannah Ouellet Economist (secondment) and Peter Nunns Director of Economics, discuss their findings. Read the report…
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In episode two of our Infrastructure for a better future series we look to Stockholm. Stockholm was one of the first cities in the world to implement a congestion charge to reduce its traffic – and it worked. Following implementation of the charge, traffic was reduced by 20% and congestion by 30% to 50%. Not only that, but public perception of the …
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Years of underinvestment in hospitals and other public health facilities mean that many are no longer fit for purpose. Health reforms offer an unprecedented opportunity to deliver a step change in how we plan and deliver health infrastructure. Recommendations from a recent health infrastructure report by Robert Rust show just how to do this. Robert…
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Kerry O’Brien speaks with ballet power couple Li Cunxin AO and Mary Li to reveal the intertwined tales of this remarkable pair. Held Friday 25 February, 2022 at Home of the Arts, Gold Coast. Full summary: https://enlighten.griffith.edu.au/cunxin-li/ Chapters Introduction from Vice Chancellor and President of Griffith University Professor Carolyn Ev…
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For this conversation in Griffith University’s A Better Future for All interview series, Kerry O’Brien welcomed a panel of contemporary literary figures to the HOTA stage. Acclaimed novelists David Malouf, Melissa Lucashenko and Trent Dalton sat with Kerry to discuss their work within the context of Australia’s evolving storytelling culture. Each w…
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In partnership with HOTA, Home of the Arts, Griffith University’s A Better Future For All series continues with one of Australia’s most prolific arts professionals Rachel Griffiths AM talking with Kerry O’Brien about her celebrated career. Rachel is an Academy Award Nominated and multi award-winning actress whose impressive career has spanned from …
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Critically injured in a traffic accident while still a medical student more than a decade ago, Dr Dinesh Palipana OAM has broken more barriers than most people even face in a lifetime. Join host Kerry O’Brien as he and Dinesh delved into the good doctor’s extraordinary life and work, in what was an evening of insightful, emotional, and candid conve…
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Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce AC joined Kerry O’Brien, undeniably Australia’s premier interviewer, for the inaugural A Better Future for All event at HOTA, Home of the Arts, on Thursday 30 July 2020 to discuss the challenges facing the aviation and tourism industries in the face of COVID-19. https://betterfuture.griffith.edu.au/event-livestream/ Held…
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Renowned workers’ rights advocate and ACTU Secretary Sally McManus joined interviewer extraordinaire Kerry O’Brien to explore an array of important issues in employment, from the rise of the gig economy to the future of unions and the evolving face of work in Australia and around the world as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and other social and t…
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In this conversation, renowned journalist Kerry O’Brien and celebrated Indigenous author Bruce Pascoe explored the way Bruce’s critically acclaimed book Dark Emu: Aboriginal Australia and the birth of Agriculture challenges conventional thinking about the First Australians as hunter gatherers. Full summary: https://betterfuture.griffith.edu.au/bruc…
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Kerry O’Brien and former United States Ambassador to Australia Jeff Bleich discussed the 2020 US election. The November 2020 presidential contest between Donald Trump and Joe Biden was not only important for the United States, but for the world. The future of this region will be shaped by the outcome. Less than a week before the 2020 election, Jeff…
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Kerry O'Brien in conversation with Professor Nigel McMillan, Dr Rebecca Huntley and Mik Auckland. In the final instalment for 2020, host Kerry O’Brien lead a panel discussion on the human side of the pandemic and how this collective experience might change society. Full summary: https://betterfuture.griffith.edu.au/imagining-the-future-live-event/ …
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Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has a unique opportunity to lead Queensland through the state’s first four-year fixed term with an increased majority after the recent election. At this critical time the big decisions her government makes will shape Queensland’s future for many years to come. This conversation with veteran journalist Kerry O’Brien dis…
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Grace Tame is a remarkable young leader and the 2021 Australian of the Year. Her courage and example are empowering survivors of sexual assault to reclaim their agency by telling their stories. In this conversation with Kerry O'Brien, Grace explores why we need to hear the stories of survivors. Full summary: https://betterfuture.griffith.edu.au/gra…
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Professor John Rasko is a globally pre-eminent physician-scientist whose work on regenerative medicine and biotechnology is fundamentally changing our understanding of diseases and their cures. In this interview with Kerry O’Brien, John spoke about science, stem-cell research and the future of medicine. Full summary https://betterfuture.griffith.ed…
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In this episode Kerry O’Brien interviews Rhoda Roberts AO and Wesley Enoch AM about the power of cultural expression in shaping Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander understanding and knowledge, and the role of arts outlets in amplifying Indigenous voices. Full summary: https://betterfuture.griffith.edu.au/rhoda-wesley/ CHAPTERS Vice Chancellor’s i…
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Stan Grant, a Wiradjuri and Kamilaroi man, has built an illustrious career as an author, distinguished Australian and international broadcaster, and a powerful voice advocating for First Nations rights. Stan joins another titan of journalism Kerry O’Brien, to explore the opportunities and challenges facing our rapidly and unpredictable changing wor…
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Award winning journalist and author of acclaimed book, See What you Made me Do, Jess Hill joins veteran journalist Kerry O'Brien to discuss what needs to be done to stop Australia's epidemic of domestic violence and coercive control. A compelling and passionate advocate, Jess’s years reporting exclusively on domestic violence in Australia make her …
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