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Wednesday 29 November 2023

7.30am – 8.45am

Welcome Breakfast

Attendance at this event is by invitation only.

Partnered by City Group


Super Expo opens

9.30am – 10.00am

Official opening

Welcome to Country

ASFA Conference Welcome

 Ellen Fanning
Award-winning Presenter & Journalist

Gary Dransfield
Independent Chair, ASFA

10.00am – 10.30am

Keynote 1

The world is changing geopolitically. Are we changing with it?

The Hon. Christopher Pyne, as former Minister for Defence of Australia is eminently qualified to answer this question in the opening keynote presentation as he provides an overview of the global geopolitical jigsaw and where Australia fits within it.

Focusing on the geostrategic shifts in international relations since 2015, including from a national security point of view, Christopher will explain the implications for Australia and our allies of the political changes across the Asia Pacific, Middle East, and the USA.

Exploring the Quad (The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue between Australia, India, Japan, and the United States) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), learn why the rest of the world (including the Middle East and North Asia) is eager to be part of these alliances, especially as China steers further away from liberal democratic ideology. He’ll also share his perspective on the China/Australia and Taiwan situation, as well as the Ukraine and Russia conflict.

While the world grapples with uncertainty, one thing is for sure: you’re in for a fascinating and insightful presentation. Prepare to walk away with a deeper understanding of the global geostrategic landscape; what’s changed, Australia’s scope of influence and how everything interconnects and impacts on our businesses.

The Hon. Christopher Pyne
Former Minister for Defence of Australia

10.30am – 11.15am

Keynote 2

The economics of green super power

As the urgency to move to a low emissions economy escalates, catching up lost ground in investment in renewable assets is now a growing priority. While there are hurdles, there are also huge investment opportunities for superannuation funds, especially in line with the long-term horizon of renewable projects.

Guy Debelle, former Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia, co-chair of The Australian Sustainable Finance Institute's (ASFI) Taxonomy Technical Expert Group (TTEG) and an advisor to the Investment Committee at Australian Retirement Trust, will explain where we are in the green transition both globally and locally, and the implications for super funds in terms of existing portfolios and potential new opportunities.

As funds continue to globalise and internationalise investment—predominantly into OECD economies—Guy will unpack the impact for Australia and other countries in the region. Find out how this all fits within the broader Net Zero transition playbook, particularly with the new International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) guidelines for sustainability-related disclosures in investments.

Dr Guy Debelle
Former Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia, Co-chair of The Australian Sustainable Finance Institute's (ASFI) Taxonomy Technical Expert Group (TTEG)

This session will be followed by a fireside chat with Dr Guy Debelle, The Hon. Christopher Pyne and Ellen Fanning.

11.15am – 11.55am

Keynote 3

If not China, then where?

With capital-raising and deployment muted in most markets (not just China), some investors, including super funds, may rebalance their current allocations by focusing elsewhere. For others China will remain a key investment destination.

So, if not China, where else can super funds invest?

The Australian Government has commissioned the Southeast Asia Economic Strategy to 2040 that will examine how emerging regional trends will change or transform Southeast Asian economies over the next two decades, and where Australia is best placed to respond to these emerging economic opportunities.

One option that won’t be covered in the review is India. India’s massive population translates into a substantial consumer market. A rising middle class with a significant proportion of its citizens under the age of 30, India has one of the largest number of millennials and Gen Zs globally. This not only means a demand for a wide range of goods and services—including consumer products, automobiles, technology, healthcare, and more—but also means a large and energetic workforce that can contribute to economic growth and innovation.

Additionally, the Indian Government's initiatives to improve infrastructure and attract foreign investment contribute to its appeal.

However, India also comes with regulatory complexities, governance challenges and geopolitical risks.

In this intriguing keynote experts will pragmatically discuss the risks, challenges and advantages presented by the emerging economies of Australia’s Asian neighbours.

Akihito (Aki) Watanabe
Managing Director, Keppel Credit
Samiran Chakraborty
Managing Director and Chief Economist, Citi India
Nicola Yeomans
Partner, Co-Head Private Capital Singapore, King & Wood Mallesons

12.00pm – 1.00pm

Lunch in the Super Expo

1.10pm – 2.00pm

Parallel 1A

Managing long term service provider relationships

The session will unpack the different approaches funds are taking with their long-term strategic relationships. We will draw out some of the challenges that funds face when bringing on a new partner and how different funds approach the maintenance of these relationships over time. It will look at the individual experiences – what has worked and what hasn’t and the learnings each has experienced.

Brendan Daly
Chief Service Officer, Rest
Paul Thomas
Chief Procurement Officer, TelstraSuper
Rachel Reynolds
Head of Operations, Vanguard Super

Nicki Ashton
Managing Director, Citi Australia

1.10pm – 2.00pm

Parallel 1B

Brand as a business strategy

Technology has enhanced organisations' ability to deliver customer engagement and intimacy at an unprecedented pace and scale. However, there are some fundamental principles around differentiation which risk being overlooked as leaders focus on tech adoption as the only means to transform.

Nick Garrett, Global Leader – Marketing & Commerce at Deloitte Digital will talk to the role of brand as a business strategy and how to be relevant to customers today and tomorrow. Through his work with boards and executives around the world, Nick will bring a global perspective and discuss:

  • the seven principles all the great brands in the world have in common and how the most successful businesses become differentiated, relevant and sustainable through using a brand and customer lens to complement the technology investment.
  • the key global customer trends all brands will need to navigate to thrive in the future.
Given the scale and dynamics of the superannuation industry, the role of brand in driving transformation, culture and purpose cannot be underestimated. This session will enable questions and debate about how these principles can be leveraged to enable a more sustainable and customer-focused superannuation industry.


Nick Garrett
Global Leader Marketing & Commerce, Deloitte Digital
Jo Reilly
Head of Member Growth & Marketing, AustralianSuper

1.10pm – 2.00pm

Parallel 1C

The evolving role of the fund CIO

Members’ best interests are firmly guarded by superannuation fund CIOs, responsible for ensuring the financial well-being and security of millions of individuals as they plan for their retirement.

So, what are the key issues that CIOs think about?

In an environment of evolving regulatory frameworks and changing demographics, the CIO must navigate challenges such as inflation, market volatility, and shifting investment landscapes, adapting strategies to maintain the long-term viability of the superannuation fund.

Our panel of experienced CIOs will discuss the key investment issues they face every day, in an interactive session with questions welcomed from the floor. This is a unique opportunity to engage with those whose role within the superannuation system goes beyond mere financial management and towards an ethical obligation to deliver on members’ aspirations for a secure and fulfilling retirement.

Allison Hill
State Chief Investment Officer, QIC
Alexandra Campbell
Deputy CIO and Head of Private Markets, Cbus
Ian Patrick
Chief Investment Officer, Australian Retirement Trust

Graeme Mather
Partner at Antler

2.10pm – 3.00pm

Parallel 2A

A deep dive into NAB’s 2023 Superannuation Survey

Given the continued growth and scale of Australia’s $3.5 trillion superannuation system and the ongoing increase in exposure to international assets, FX considerations have never been more important. NAB launched its 11th biennial Superannuation Insights Report in June 2023.

For two decades, the NAB survey has provided insights into how Australian superannuation funds manage their currency exposures. The level of detail on currency positioning, decision-making processes, hedging products and the impact of regulatory changes is intended to enable funds to assess their practices against industry peers.

This NAB panel session will share insight highlights from the survey including asset allocation, liquidity management tools, currency risk in emerging markets, the impact of changes to the Your Future, Your Super (YFYS) performance test and ESG.

Partnered by: NAB

Ray Attrill
Head of FX Strategy - Fixed income, Currencies & Commodities, NAB
Jeremy Wilmot
Chair JANA Investment Committee & Principal Consultant at JANA
Steve Freeborn
Partner, Actuarial Consulting at Deloitte Consulting

Jamie Bonic
Head of FX Investor Sales, NAB

2.10pm – 3.00pm

Parallel 2B

Life beyond disability: The real needs of TPD claimants

The provision of disability insurance through superannuation plays a significant role in providing financial protection and security for Australians. It helps individuals and their families in times of need and contributes to the overall financial wellbeing of superannuation fund members.

After Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) benefits are paid following a physical or mental health claim, we often no longer have a relationship with that member. So, how much do we understand about the adequacy and appropriateness of the TPD that are paid, and whether they meet a member's needs and expectations?

Partnered by: TAL

Penny Paré
Senior Manager, Insurance, Australian Retirement Trust
Prof. Nick Glozier
Professor of Psychological Medicine, University of Sydney

Jenny Oliver
Chief Executive – Group Life & Retirement, TAL

2.10pm – 3.00pm

Parallel 2C

AI, Machines, Bots… The Future “Face” of Super?

Imagine a world where human interaction is replaced by machines and bots that sound hyper-realistic and human-like. With the advancements of robotics, machines and AI, this future is becoming increasingly real.

So what are the blue-sky possibilities of such advancements? And is this a future that we would want?

Thinking beyond the use of AI in purely online channels such as Chat GPT, this session will explore how the realism of machines and bots, coupled with AI to power logic and thinking, could replace human interaction in our operating models. Imagine a fund where contact centres are powered by machine bots that sound and interact like a human, using the power of AI.

How would this transform the way a fund could deliver for its members? Would there be less errors? Would it be more “fool proof’? Would it make it more cost-efficient? And importantly, is it ethical?

Join us as we discuss and debate the potential future “face” of super, and whether this is a future we should embrace or fear.

Prof Nita A. Farahany
Author of The Battle for Your Brain, Legal Scholar & Ethicist, Director of the Duke Initiative for Science & Society
Katherine Forrest
Chief Operating Officer, IQ Group

Wendy Mak
General Manager, Sustainability & Stakeholder Communications, Link Group

3.10pm – 3.40pm

Afternoon tea in the Super Expo

3.45pm – 4.25pm

Keynote 4

Controlling our bodies and our minds – what does the AI-enabled future really look like?

As modern society evolves and embraces the swift advancements in artificial intelligence, we see that technology is rapidly converging with our bodies, and astonishingly, even our minds.

This no doubt gives rise to a new era of possibilities where human potential seems limitless. But what are the ethical dilemmas around privacy, security, autonomy and equality? Is there a balance between the opportunities that technology advancements offer and safeguarding the fundamental values of humanity?

Nita A. Farahany, Professor of Law & Philosophy at Duke Law School, and author and scholar on the ethical, legal, and social implications of emerging technologies, will deliver a compelling keynote that offers delegates a much needed map to navigate a world where AI and neuroscience merge.

Prof Nita A. Farahany
Author of The Battle for Your Brain, Legal Scholar & Ethicist, Director of the Duke Initiative for Science & Society

4.20pm – 4.50pm

Keynote 5

Thriving in a politicised world

The idea that business and politics are separate domains has never had much credibility. Today, that idea has been blown apart as we move from a world of financialised capitalism to one of political capitalism.

What does this mean? What are the implications for investors and pension funds? How does one re-tool corporations and funds to thrive in an increasingly politicised and polarised world that now affects business strategy and almost every aspect of business decision-making?

Dr Joe Zammit-Lucia
Author, Public Speaker and Accomplished Leadership Advisor

Ellen Fanning
Award-winning Presenter & Journalist

4.55pm – 5.30pm

Keynote 6

Kicking goals – what super can learn from the Matildas

In the space of a few short weeks earlier this year, the Matildas transcended sport to become national icons. This ‘overnight success’ was the culmination of long-term investment in talent, diversity, community engagement and collaboration, driving what is now one of Australia’s most valuable brands.

So, what went into this extraordinary achievement and where does it take the team, and women’s sport into the future? This keynote session will look at the structural and commercial innovation and foresight, that turned the Matildas into one of the most effective brands in Australia. What can super learn from the planning and engagement engendered at all levels of Australian society?

As the Head of Women's Football in Australia and a former Matilda (played from 2004-2012), Sarah shares the incredible story behind the Matildas. A former professional player, she will share how she transferred her athletic skills, into leadership roles that demonstrated best-practice gender equity and governance. She’ll give valuable insights for the industry from her experience of creating high-performing teams and building frameworks that create more inclusive environments from the grassroots to elite level.

Sarah will share her unique and progressive insights into adopting a results-driven approach to business, with people at the centre of all decisions.

Sarah Walsh
Head of Women's Football, Women's World Cup Legacy & Inclusion, Football Australia

Ellen Fanning
Award-winning Presenter & Journalist

5.30pm – 6.30pm

Networking Drinks in the Super Expo

Partnered by:  IQ Group

*Program timings subject to change


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