Presentations from the 2016 Seniors Conference "Nice Work If You Can Get It"

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1. Keynote Presentation Ms Marlene Krasovitsky  

Willing to Work National Inquiry into Employment Discrimination Against Older Australians. 

Key findings of the Willing to Work National Inquiry into Employment Discrimination Against Older Australians. Reporting on the key recommendations which include establishing a Minister for Longevity, developing national action plans, expanding the role of the Workplace Gender Equality Agency, national education campaigns and targets for employment and retention of older people.

Ms Marlene Krasovitsky is currently the Director of Willing to Work, the National Inquiry into Employment Discrimination Against Older Australians and Australians with Disability with the Australian Human Rights Commission. This Inquiry is being led by The Hon. Susan Ryan AO, Age and Disability Discrimination Commissioner. Marlene has worked in Commonwealth and State Government in a range of policy and operational roles as well as a number of major public inquiries including the Review of Women in the Australian Defence Force and the Special Commission of Inquiry into Child Protection Services in NSW. Marlene is currently undertaking PhD studies with the School of Government, University of Sydney. Marlene holds an Executive Masters of Public Administration (ANZSOG), a Masters of Business Administration (University of Technology, Sydney) and is a registered psychologist.

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2. Dr Harriet Radermacher

“A man is not a financial plan”: Exploring the economic security and employment of older Australian women

Applying a gender lens to employment discrimination and look at the inequitable and complex mix of circumstances of older women and the impact on their employment and therefore economic and social participation. She will make particular reference to Time of Our Lives research.

Dr Harriet Radermacher is currently working as a research and evaluation consultant. Her work over the last ten years as a researcher at Monash and Victoria Universities has focused on the experiences of people from diverse cultural backgrounds in a range of areas including ageing, palliative care, disability, and gambling. She completed a doctorate in Community Psychology in 2006, is an Adjunct Lecturer at Monash University, and also works as a research and policy officer at the Australian Psychological Society. Harriet’s current projects and activities include: Cultural conceptualisations of healthy ageing and the intersection between community psychology and ageing, with a focus on ageism.

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3. Dr Joyce Jiang 

Retire, stay on, refire:  what is the reality for older female workers from CALD Backgrounds

Findings from a partnership research project in an aged care organisation.The presentation addresses migration and employment patterns; the shift of the CALD workforce into aged care, particularly women from CALD backgrounds. Joyce discussed the training and support needs of CALD aged care workers and how to design and create culturally inclusive workplaces that not only attract, but more importantly retain workers.

Dr Joyce Jiang holds the position of Health Promotion Manager at Multicultural Centre for Women’s Health (MCWH) with responsibilities of overseeing health education programs and health promotion projects. Joyce has a Bachelor of Medicine/Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS), a Master of Public Health (MPH), and PhD in Family and Work Studies. Her interests include population health, health inequalities and public health policy. Joyce has over 15 years’ experience across diverse fields including medicine, business and the tertiary sector, having worked internationally as a registered practitioner, manager, researcher and educator.

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4. Dr Ruth Williams 

Age Management for Employers

Addresses the employers’ perspective and the work that she was involved with at National Seniors in developing the Employers Age Friendly toolkit. Findings of the report include what information, resources, and good practice examples are available in the fields of employment, management and workforce ageing.

Dr Ruth Williams is the Academic Convenor of the Hallmark Ageing Research Initiative and a Research Fellow with the Centre for Workplace Leadership at the University of Melbourne. Ruth’s research includes exploring the experiences of older worker’s work-life transitions, employer attitudes, workplace policy, the relationship between health and caregiving and labour force participation. Ruth has also worked with a number of industry partners and organisational case studies to identify and implement strategies to maximise the benefits of an ageing workforce. Ruth is the author of the Age Management Toolkit for Employers and has previously worked as a Research Fellow at the National Seniors Productive Ageing Centre and in the Faculty of Business and Economics at Monash University

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5. Dr Dina Bowman, Dr Helen Kimberley, Dr Michael McGann & Ms Agathe Randrianarisoa

Understanding and addressing workforce vulnerabilities in midlife and beyond


Research on workforce vulnerabilities in mid-life and beyond (Too Old to Work, Too Young to Retire) and findings from their current study which looks at mature age job seekers and employment services. In particular they will take a more nuanced look at age discrimination and how this can mask other issues. The presentation addresses the interconnection between work, age and identity and the importance of gender and class in shaping older workers’ diverse experiences of ageing, work and discrimination.

Dr Dina Bowman leads the team that examines work and economic security in the Research and Policy Centre at the Brotherhood of St Laurence. She is also an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at the University of Melbourne. Her research focuses on labour market equity and economic security. Dina’s current research includes a study on mature age jobseekers and employment services. She was previously part of the University of Melbourne and Brotherhood of St Laurence research team on the project Understanding and Preventing Workforce Vulnerabilities in Mid-Life and Beyond.

Ms Agathe Randrianarisoa is a Senior researcher at Brotherhood of St Laurence. Prior to joining the Work, Economic and Security team she worked at Good Shepherd Microfinance, Oxfam and at two consulting firms providing strategic and financial advice. She holds a Bachelor in Mathematics Applied to Social Sciences from Paris-Dauphine University, a Master in Management from ESCP Europe and a degree in International labour migration from Oxford University. Agathe’s research focuses on Economic security and Inclusion in Australia and in developing countries. She has been working on projects related to vulnerable people and employment, microfinance, fair taxation systems and food security

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Dr Michael McGann is a Research Fellow in the School of Social and Political Sciences, the University of Melbourne, where he is part of a research team working on welfare reform and employment services research. His main interest is in social policy on employment, with a particular focus on issues related to insecure work, work and ageing, and public employment services. Michael was also previously part of the University of Melbourne and Brotherhood of St Laurence research team on the project Understanding and Preventing Workforce Vulnerabilities in Mid-Life and Beyond. Michael gained a PhD in Philosophy from Monash University in 2009.

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Dr Helen Kimberley leads the team which concentrates on economic and social issues related to the quality of later life at the Brotherhood of St Laurence. She holds a PhD and a B.Ed. from La Trobe University and is an Honorary Senior Research Fellow, School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Melbourne. Helen has managed a range of research and evaluation projects commissioned by the government, not-forprofit and private sectors. She has also prepared policy submissions and contributed to multiple national and international conferences, seminars and roundtables. Helen’s research interests include income and asset inequality, workforce participation, later life learning and quality of life and care.

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2 Responses to Presentations

  1. Yvonne Honey says:

    I attended the COTA conference on behalf of the City of Kingston Positive Ageing Committee who would like to do some follow up research and work on the issues discussed on the day. I am wondering if it is possible to obtain 8 copies of the Willing to Work report for the committee members?

  2. bmorton says:

    Hi Yvonne

    Unfortunately we do not have any copies available. The report can be found here .



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