Australian business owners and industry representatives will gather with policy makers and public servants to tackle the country’s “microeconomic challenge” at a summit in Sydney next month.
Hosted by the Council of Small Business of Australia, the MicroEconomic Challenge will aim to empower local business communities to influence and improve their local economies.
The event will be held at the Vodafone HQ conference facility on Sydney’s North Shore on Wednesday, December 9, with tickets priced at $100 each.
Among the sponsors already signed on to the event are Communications and Information Technology Training (CITT), the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation and SmartCompany, which is the media partner for the event. Additional sponsors are expected to come on board closer to the event.
The one-day summit will tackle a range of issues, including local economic development, vocational education and training and how to promote healthy communities through business.
Attendees will also hear from representatives from regulators, including the Fair Work Ombudsman and Fair Work Commission, the Australian Tax Office and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.
At the end of the event, the organisers plan to develop a communique to government and industry for what can be done on a microeconomic level to improve productivity across the country.
Peter Strong, executive director of COSBOA, told SmartCompany this morning he wants the event to be as inclusive as possible and hopes public servants from government departments will attend.
“This is the real world, it’s beyond the macroeconomic,” he says.
“We would be really happy to see public servants there, including junior ones who will be the decision-makers in the future.”
Writing for SmartCompany today, Strong says “there is currently a culture of centralised decision making in Australia that inhibits change management and hinders innovation”.
“Centralised decision-making has its place around certain issues such as interest rate changes, finance regulations and competition management but the impact of centralised decision-making loses momentum when local economies are considered,” he wrote.
“Indeed a decision made at the national or state level can have a negative or positive impact on communities depending upon a range of factors.”
Strong says local business communities must be given the “capacity to influence their own economies based on what they want and what they value”.
“Local medium and small businesses are best placed to deal with change – good or bad,” he says.
“Local business communities can also create the change they believe they need. If most small economies around Australia are functioning well, then the whole economy will be healthy.”