Committee Communiqué

From the CEO

Vale Fiona Richardson MP
We are deeply saddened by the passing of Minister for Women and Victoria's first Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence, The Hon. Fiona Richardson MP.

A survivor of family violence who advocated strongly on behalf of its victims, one of her greatest legacies will be her efforts spearheading a Royal Commission into Family Violence in Victoria and the commission’s final report. 

Minister Richardson gave strong support to the Committee for Melbourne’s Future Focus Group Equal Crossings initiative, which saw the installation of female traffic lights at a busy CBD intersection as a means of drawing attention to the issue of unconscious bias. We were very grateful to her for backing this project, which will leave a permanent and positive public legacy in Melbourne. Hers was a life of great achievement and public service.  

The Economist Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) Global Liveability Survey 
Last week, the EIU’s global liveability survey voted Melbourne the 'World’s Most Liveable City' for an unprecedented 7 years in a row.

This is great news for Greater Melbourne given that liveability is a key component in our city’s ability to attract and retain top global and local talent.

However, we must not allow this welcome success to distract us from the fact that our appeal as a leading international city is being challenged by the profound forces of innovation and disruption brought about by the Fourth Industrial Revolution, as well as the increasing competitiveness of the Asia-Pacific region. Note, for example, that the cities which have improved most in the ranking are Asian cities. 

Our city’s success also brings with it pressures on our public infrastructure and critical amenities so important for social well being and cohesion.   

Melbourne must continue to nurture and build on its global strengths in innovation, such as the health and life sciences sector, to build a secure platform for the new economy. 

Committee for Melbourne submission
Following the release of the Federal Government's National Cities Performance Framework Interim Report, the Committee assembled a range of experts from our membership base to discuss and put forth a series of recommendations to the Government. Read our submission.   
The Framework is an important tool in helping policy makers, and other key decision makers, chart a course for improved liveability, productivity, and prosperity.

Committees for Cities Victoria 
Committee for Cities and Regions Victoria met last week at the Committee for Melbourne offices to discuss connectivity issues.

Regional rail, road and telecommunications are of prime importance to all our Committees because of their essential role in developing the state’s economy, regions and liveability. The discussion, chaired by Committee for Ballarat Chair Janet Dore, focused on exploring potential joint actions and advocacy. In fact, the Committee for Melbourne’s Melbourne 4.0 Taskforce has identified an efficient mass transit airport link and improved regional connectivity as two key Strategic Needs. Read our Melbourne 4.0 report

Happy reading!

Leading Thinker: Paul Shetler

A globally recognised leader on digital transformation, Paul Shetler addressed Committee Members earlier today at a Leading Thinker series event, hosted by Equiem.

Committee for Melbourne CEO Martine Letts, Equiem CEO Gabrielle McMillan and Paul Shetler

A former Chief of Australia’s Digital Transformation Agency, Paul emphasised the critical importance of organisational transformation in the digital age. He also highlighted that:  

  • Many companies do not fully understand the business that they operate in
  • Every company is now a software company. The business strategy can no longer be separated from the digital strategy
  • Radical upskilling throughout Australia is required

His presentation reinforced the need for our city to future-proof itself and prepare for the disruption brought about by the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Finally, our Members heard from Equiem’s Product Lead for Spaces, Emma Stewart, about their latest product, Equiem Spaces – an AirBnB for meeting and boardrooms. Users who have an Equiem Portal in their building, can book spaces for meetings and events. Find out more.

Open House Melbourne

Open House Melbourne (OHM) was borne of a strong desire to provide an avenue for people to understand, and hopefully value, the importance of good design in shaping our city.

Melburnians visit the OHM booth on Swanston St to purchase their guides
Photography: Simon Shiff

A decade on and this award-winning weekend event, and now a wider annual program, have clearly established the interest Melburnians have in their own city: past, present, and future. 

The past year has seen significant growth for Open House Melbourne – an initiative of Committee for Melbourne’s Future Focus Group in 2008 – seeing the organisation mature into a highly respected public architecture organisation that recently joined the Committee for Melbourne as a not-for-profit member.

Melburnians visit KPMG offices as part of 2017
Photography: Simon Shiff 

What is the future of Open House Melbourne? The organisation aims to provide residents and visitors alike a robust and dense year-round program that illustrates the history and future of our city through the built environment, much like the successful Chicago Architecture Foundation and Open City in London.

Chicago Architecture Foundation – who run Open House Chicago – is the world’s largest public architecture organisation with over 70 staff. Imagine Melbourne as the center for civic engagement with urban design and architecture in the Southern Hemisphere. Join OHM on their journey....

The future of transport

Last week, Committee Members Uber and RACV hosted a roundtable discussion on the future of transport chaired by RACV’s GM of Public Policy Brian Negus, with a keynote address by Uber's Head of Transportation Policy and Research in the US, Andrew Salzberg.

The discussion focused on how technology can address Melbourne’s transport congestion and improve mobility, the controversial topic of road pricing and examples of big data informing infrastructure planning. 

In particular, the forum addressed:

  • the sharing of real-time data across service providers
  • increased mobility through integrated end-to-end passenger services
  • innovation in providing the ‘last mile’ of the customer journey
  • updates on Uber’s global focus on shared services
  • the future of dynamic road pricing 
  • the infrastructure implications of autonomous vehicles
  • integrated transport solutions for major events.

With representation from all the different modes of transport as well relevant authorities, a number of initiatives were identified which with be factored into our Melbourne 4.0 work.

Hall & Wilcox celebrated 100 years!

Corporate Member Hall and Wilcox will celebrate its centenary this month with a gala dinner for alumni, clients and supporters of the firm at the Plaza Ballroom, as well as celebrations for the firm’s people across each office.

From its roots as a Melbourne only insurance and litigation firm, Hall and Wilcox has grown to a leading independent business law firm with substantial offices in Melbourne and Sydney and growing offices in Brisbane, Perth, Canberra and Newcastle. The firm acts for over 20% of Australia's top 100 companies, is well-known in the legal market for its progressive and inclusive culture and has built a reputation as one of the country's most innovative and forward thinking firms.

Committee for Melbourne Director and Hall and Wilcox Managing Partner for the last 10 years, Tony Macvean, says "We are very proud of our 100 year history and are determined to build on our legacy to grow, evolve and succeed for years to come.”

Congratulations Hall and Wilcox!

Member achievements

Melbourne secures largest conference ever
Thanks to the combined efforts of the Victorian Government, the Melbourne Convention Bureau and Committee Members the City of Melbourne and the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC), our city has secured the Lions Clubs International Convention 2024 (LCIC24) – the largest cultural conference ever held in Victoria.

Taking place at the MCEC, the five-day annual convention will bring 13,000 Lions Club members from around the globe to Melbourne thereby delivering an anticipated $84.4 million boost to our economy. Melbourne’s successful bid was made possible by the massive expansion of MCEC and reaffirms our reputation as the major events capital.

Innovation knows no boundaries
Three of Melbourne’s biggest institutions – and Committee Members – are partnering to create an urban innovation district which is set to drive investment in the knowledge economy.

The urban innovation district is part of the Melbourne Innovation Districts (MID) initiative, a collaboration between the City of Melbourne, RMIT University and the University of Melbourne. It will provide more opportunities for Melbourne’s knowledge workers, researchers, students, business and community organisations to connect and collaborate, creating innovative ideas essential for the city to continue to thrive and prosper.

Uber regulation
Earlier this month, the Andrews Government’s comprehensive reforms to taxi and hire car services passed parliament. These reforms will boost competition, choice and the quality of services and have resulted in Uber's regulation in Victoria.

Member offer: Nous House

Nous House is a professional co-working community located with Nous Group in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Canberra.

Join professional services firms, independent consultants, social enterprises and specialist businesses brought together to foster innovation, collaboration and growth.

Digital Innovation Festival

The Victorian Government is showcasing and celebrating excellence across the digital and tech sectors with the Digital Innovation Festival (DIF).

From 23 August to 6 September, the Festival will put together and promote a range of digital innovation and technology events across the state including awards, forums, workshops, showcases, hackathons and much more.

Celebrate the 'Victorian Difference' that drives entrepreneurs, students and industry to not only be different but make a difference through digital technology.

View the program and register for DIF.

Melbourne Tourism Week

Melbourne Tourism Week 2017 will be celebrated under the theme of 'Visitability starts with us', as Committee Member Destination Melbourne drives our city from most world's most liveable to most visitable.

Make sure you register to:

The centrepiece of Melbourne Tourism Week, the MTIE offers Melbourne's attractions, precincts, hotels, events, restaurants and retailers the chance to reach the city's key word of mouth tourism influencers. Register for this free event!

*To celebrate the MTIE's 10th birthday, you will be entered into the draw to win fantastic prizes by registering by Tuesday 29 August*


Discuss how food is intrinsically linked with the identity of a destination and how the visitor economy can collaborate to maximise every opportunity that our enviable food reputation brings. Book now!

Join the conversation #MelbourneTourismWeek!

Our vision for Melbourne:

Global city of choice for people and organisations, due to its distinct blend of prosperity, opportunity and liveability.