Other peoples’ views on the 2020 summit

There are lots of people commenting on many blogs about the 2020 summit and its outcomes, including a growing number of firsthand descriptions from participants. As I was reading a lot of them anyway, I thought I’d list them in a separate post. They aren’t in any particular order of merit, although I’ve put ones from summit participants towards the top. I’m sure more will appear over the next few days – I’ll add them here as I find them.

  • Andrew Norton, a participant in the Productivity stream, dislikes the ‘community service to pay off your HECS debt’ idea, is even less keen on the idea of a national curriculum and didn’t join in the standing ovation at the end. But the summit “did not become the farce it easily could have”.
  • Peter Martin from the Canberra Times writes about what the economy stream came up with.
  • John Quiggin, a summit participant, gives a few thoughts. He emphasises the general benefits that come from a new openness to ideas, and the fact that it is not just about new ideas but acting more effectively on what we already know.
  • Joshua Gans, another participant in the Productivity stream, writes at his blog about the processes followed, which seem (to me) to be less than ideal in the way the content of the final (interim) report was pulled together. He gives a positive assessment of the event and the benefits of making new connections.
  • Andrew Leigh from ANU – another participant in the productivity stream, found the summit be a worthwhile exercise, notes the benefits of building networks, and gives a brief insight into the vibe of the ‘early childhood and schooling’ sub-stream.
  • Graeme Dobell from the Lowy Institute looks at the security/foreign policy stream.
  • Robert Merkel at LP is also disappointed with the outcomes from the Sustainability section (and links to an interesting and very dispirited comment by Prof Hugh Possingham, a participant in that stream, which might explain why the results of that section didn’t impress me much either: “as for tying the writers/reporters down to specific quanitifiable objectives, and actions to address those objectives – impossible – they didn’t want a bar of it. I spat the dummy near the end and even that didn’t work.”)
  • Jim Belshaw shows some reasoned scepticism about the value of the processes used. He focuses on the governance group, and is unhappy with the focus on the Republic to the exclusion of more signficant constitutional and governance reform.
  • Peter Timmins also focuses on goverance, with a more positive tone.
  • Dave Bath at Balneus is perplexed at the outdated technology used to manage the proceedings and output of the summit, and gives a good explanation of how collaborative softward could have improved the productivity of the event. As he says, “it’s not the ideas stupid, it’s the self-organising of ideas and the linkages between them that creates value.”
  • Graham at Ambit Gambit is pleased about the potential of the “eDemocracy Big Idea”, although is fearful of the risk of bureaucratic capture.
  • Derek Barry at Woolly Days gives a detailed rundown of all the closing summarising speeches.
  • Tim Dunlop at Blogocracy mentions some of the mainstream media coverage and was not impressed with the ABC coverage over the weekend itself.
  • An Onymous Lefty suggests its all just ‘vague uncontroversial generalisations’; 
  • Sinclair Davidson at Catallaxy runs some right-wing attack caricatures, along with dismissing it as ‘bread and circuses’ and ‘social engineering”;
  • Slim from The Dogs Bollocks criticises the cynics and says the summit will prove to be productive;
  • Gam at Today’s Apathetic Youth is positive about the process and its potential;
  • Andrew Bolt has found a mountain of things to hate and he’s listing a lot of them;
  • HeathG at Catallaxy doesn’t think the results are good for “those of us who would prefer less government and more individual freedom”;
  • Piping Shrike’s take on the summit – written before the event, but a worthwhile perspective on the possible changes it might signal to the way politics is done at federal level;
  • Chris Berg gives a well argued outline of why he is unimpressed, labelling 2020 “a successful version of Brendan Nelson’s listening tour.”
  • The Editor at Grodscorp counts the number of Cate Blanchett mentions in the mainstream media.
  • Bridgit at Grodscorp details the unsatisfied experiences of the Herald Sun’s ‘delegate’, while giving her own view that “the 2020 Summit is to policy development what 20-20 cricket games are to test matches.”
  • John Griffiths at The Concatenate is not impressed.
  • Gatewatching is fairly scathing about the shallowness of much of the media coverage.
  • Lauredhel gives a few quick observations, including the apparent absence of many people with disabilities.
  • Tigtog has a short summary and some links.
  • Kevin Rennie supports the push towards improving federalism by reducing duplication.
  • QUT Professor Stuart Cunningham, writing in New Matilda, assesses the outcomes of the Creative stream, and feels the focus on traditional arts funding came at the expense of our creative growth sectors.
  • Ben Eltham at New Matilda’s Polliegraph is also disappointed with results from the Creative area, agreeing with Cunningham that “the digital agenda has been comprehensively neglected.”
  • Seamus at Club Troppo gives a perspective of an overseas based Australian.
  • Mark at Larvatus Prodeo assesses the summit as “accentuating a trend that was already evident – the broadening of public focus on long term issues and possible solutions,” and looks at how the republic debate might play out differently this time, despite the efforts of the monarchists.
  • Jason Soon at Catallaxy quotes Henry Ergas, suggesting we should remember that government can’t solve all problems. “What is most striking is not the varied quality of the outcomes but the underlying commonality of approach: an approach almost always centred on making government do more, rather than questioning whether it can even do as much as it now seeks to do.
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  1. Senator Andrew!Come and live in N.S.W. please,fuck Queensland!The Iemma government is so bad,I reckon you could enter up in the State House,without trying that hard!Look at the housing thing today about public housing in the opinion part of the SMH…Then what is happening with lasers ,and the Police.Some even conciliatory statements towards embattled parts of Unions would even go down well as being completely honest and trustworthy.And the visit by the Pope is like the devil buzzing in everyone’s ears.Unless a miracle occurs! I dont understand how Morris and the quick thinking ALP have got themselves into this,accept if they see their role as entirely campaigning,which was analysed, as such, early.With the Democrats,and yourself,you wont be doing that,because there is no reason to.You either pass or fail as people, governing.And the Greens need some companions,so they think a bit more cleverly and clearly,about matters,although they are as disheartened,honestly, as anyone else,about how N.S.W. is being governed right now.Even Stoner is rising to the occasion,but,doesnt quite do enough homework.The Libs are pulsing,but just seem to not have the community on board,use to being part of the bigger features of two party solutions.

  2. I think the summit worked just because people were invited to talk for a change instead of bitching and whining at each other.

    If there had been consensus there would have been no point at all. It is the ongoing debate that matters not the egos of the few.

  3. I would rather be interested in what was discussed/debated and decided at the pre-summit organised prior to 2020 summit.

  4. Zen:

    Thats right absolute nonesense.
    Some idiot even bought up death duties ” Unbelievable” probably some ALP Corporate Capitalist stooge. I think the ALP was more believable when they were the communist ALP prior to the split. At least then they admitted to being comos and allowed decent folk to join the DLP


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