Past Events

  • 'What makes Government Good?' with Senator Katy Gallagher

    The ACT Fabians are joined by newly appointed Senator Katy Gallagher, former Chief Minister of the ACT to discuss the processes, institutions, tips and tricks that make for good government. $10 ticket, including a drink and canapes!

  • 2015 National Annual General Meeting

    Please find notice for our Annual General Meeting to be held in Melbourne on Saturday 25th July.

    We are holding the Australian Fabians National AGM at this time to align with the ALP National Conference and a fringe forum being sponsored by the Fabians on Sunday 26th at 10.45 am - Towards Equality – Can Australians have a healthy future.

    Members are reminded that due to our two year position terms there will be no elections involved with this AGM. 

    Remember that your local branch AGMs will have already elected your State / Branch representatives on the National Board. The National Board will be meeting earlier this day for a strategic planning session.


    Proposed Agenda:

    1. Welcome & Introduction of National Board Members: Chairman Tim Sonnreich

    2. Apologies

    3. Ordinary Business

    a. Confirmation of the minutes of the previous AGM (2014)

    b. Annual Reports

    • Chairman

    • Secretary

    • Treasurer – Financial Statements for 2014.

    c. Authorise the ‘public officers’ reports (those above) to Consumer Affairs Victoria and ASIC.

    4. Special Business Agenda items to be considered under Special Business should be advised to the National Secretary by no later than 18th July 2015.

    5. We expect the AGM to close by 4.00 PM. Join us at the Bar for a good time & chat with fellow Fabians

  • Housing Affordability Seminar

    Housing affordability is a major issue facing Australia today. Home ownership rates are falling, prices are exponentially rising and there are fears that a generation will be renters.

    This NSW Fabians seminar will seek to explore housing affordability and provide a comprehensive understanding of the issue. The seminar will cover the history of housing policy, the impact of the law and the effect of taxation incentives.



    Liam Hogan, urbanist, historian and planner

    Cathy Sherry, senior lecturer in Law at UNSW

    Mark Bonanno, NSW Fabians Vice-President

    Ben Spies-Butcher, sociologist and political economist


    COST: Admission will be free for Fabians members and $5 for non-members. Entry includes drinks and nibbles.

    TIME: 5:30pm for a 6pm start

  • Is social democracy actually in crisis?

    The Global Financial Crisis was supposed to herald the end of neoliberalism yet social democracy seems to have entered a crisis deeper than that of the 1970s and 80s. Parties and coalitions of the centre-left have struggled against a confident laissez-faire right and resurgent nationalism. A crisis of financial capital became a crisis of public finance, leading to austerity and attacks on the remnants of the social democratic consensus. Many have claimed that social democracy is facing a crisis of irrelevance or extinction, its standing eroded by individualism and globalisation.

    But is there actually a crisis of social democracy? The electoral decline of historic centre-left parties is contrasted by many of the issues championed by social democrats such as inequality, unemployment and insecurity being at the forefront of public debate, and the other rising parties on the left and populist right are campaigning on what some see as a traditional social democratic agenda. Rather than a crisis of social democracy, is it really a crisis of the traditional political establishment?

    Join us and a great panel of speakers as we discuss the current state of social democracy, whether there is a crisis and what the future holds.

    Mark Bahnisch, sociologist and author of “Queensland: Everything you ever wanted to know, but were afraid to ask”
    Eva Cox, academic and social commentator
    David Hetherington, Executive Director, Per Capita

  • Lest we remember? Recognising the Frontier Wars

    The Australian Frontier Wars were fought from 1788 to the 1920s between Indigenous Australians and an invading coalition of white settlers, militia, police, and colonial soldiers. It has been estimated that in total the conflict claimed 20,000 to 30,000 Aboriginal lives and the lives of between 2,000 and 2,500 Europeans. This was undoubtedly a defining conflict in the history of this country.

    However, despite the undeniable significance of the Frontier wars to our shared history, there is currently no mention of them at all in the National War Memorial in Canberra and on going silence in mainstream Australian society in general.

    The NSW Fabians are proud to be joined for this event by Professor Henry Reynolds, one of Australia's most respected historians who will speak on this important but sadly too often overlooked chapter of our history and discuss how we might move forward to ensure proper acknowledgement and a more honest understanding of our past.


    Entry to this event is by donation to help cover costs. The suggested donation is $5. 

    Please RSVP for catering purposes as drinks and nibbles will be provided.

  • Mark Butler: Advanced Australia : The Politics of Ageing



           Published by Melbourne University Press.


    The Australian Fabians (South Australia)
    in conjunction with

    South Australian Labor,

    are pleased to host the launch by

    The Hon Jay Weatherill,
    Premier of South Australia


    Advanced Australia:
    The Politics of Ageing


    Hon Mark Butler MP

     "A positive perspective on the ageing of Australia's baby boomers."

    "The average Australian's life expectancy has increased by twenty-five years over the past century—from mid fifties to early eighties—a monumental achievement with huge political impact. For decad

    es to come ageing will touch almost every area of policy—retirement incomes, housing, employment, urban design, health... The greying Baby Boomers are leading this debate, both because of the size of their generation, as well as their history of reshaping every phase of life in their own image."

     "Advanced Australia takes up this challenge and makes the case for a more positive approach to ageing and one that argues for the continuing contribution older Australians make to our community." (Melbourne University Press)

    Hon Mark Butler MP has been the Federal Member for Port Adelaide since 2007, and served as Minister for Ageing in the Gillard government. He has also held the ministries of Mental Health, Housing, Homelessness, Social Inclusion, Climate Change and the Environment. In 2013 Mark was awarded the Alzheimer's Disease International Award for Outstanding Global Contribution to the Fight against Dementia. Mark is currently the Federal Labor spokesperson for the Environment, Climate Change and Water, and National President of the Australian Labor Party. 


    Guests should be seated by 4.50 pm for a 5 pm start. Copies of Advanced Australia: The Politics of Ageing will be available for purchase from approximately 4.30 pm. Bar snacks will be served. Please purchase drinks at the bar. Gold coin donation.


  • A public forum to engage Australian progressives with key reform debates that will shape the Labor Party's 2015 National Conference -- issues of tax policy & inequality, marriage equality, asylum seeker policy and environmental regulation.

    Held every three years, Labor's National Conference is the biggest opportunity for members of the broader community to shape Labor policy.

    This forum, held in advance of Labor's 47th National Conference in late July, aims to bring together members of the broader progressive movement with senior Labor figures and policy experts to discuss the key debates facing Labor.

    We are excited to announce that our speaker line-up includes:

    -- John Daley, CEO of The Grattan Institute

    -- Andrew Leigh MP, Member for Fraser and author of Battlers and Billionaires

    -- Clare O'Neil MP, recently-elected Member for Hotham

    -- Senator Lisa Singh, Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change

    -- Luke Hilakari, Secretary of Victorian Trades Hall Council

    -- Claudia Laidlaw, National Co-Convenor of Rainbow Labor

    -- Peter Malinauskas, SA Secretary of the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA)

    -- Nick Dyrenfurth, academic and author of Mateship: A Very Australian History

    More announcements to come. Lunch will be provided as part of the ticket price.

  • Queensland State Budget Discussion

    Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt MP will present a summary of the recent Queensland State Budget. There will be an opportunity for discussion as well as tea, coffee and biscuits.

    Tea and coffee will be served from 5:30pm, and the discussion will start at 6pm sharp.

    Admission price is $5 for Fabian members, $10 for non-members. Pay at the door.

  • Towards Equality: Can Australians have a healthy future?


    Hosted by Australian Fabians (with the North Melbourne ALP Branch) at the Fringe: 47th National ALP Conference, this forum will feature: Hon Catherine King, MP, Shadow Minister for Health, and panel guests.


    ** please remember **

    • To gain entry to any one event at the Fringe you must have a 3 day Fringe Ticket.
    • Why not go to as may events as you can. The Fringe program is excellent.
    • Fringe Tickets may only be purchased online at
    • Tickets cost $30/$10 (concession/under 18 years) and include GST.
    • Tickets gain you access on a first in, best dressed basis to most Fringe events.
    • Most individual Fringe events are FREE - a few have rsvps, an additional entry fee, or restricted entry.
    • Please check the Fringe Schedule online at


    Join the Towards Equality Project: 

    Help us harness ideas toward a vision of equality for Australia. 





  • Two Futures - in conversation with John Thwaites

    A week after their Melbourne launch event, join the authors of Two Futures Clare O'Neil MP and Tim Watts MP in conversation with John Thwaites.


    About TWO FUTURES.

    What will Australia be like in 2040?

    Will society be more unequal, the fair go long gone? What will drive economic growth? Will our democracy become ever more fractious, or can we revitalise it? And how should we respond to the digital revolution, climate change and regional instability?

    Too often these questions get churned up in the spin cycle of daily politics. But they’re central to Australia’s future—and they’re urgent.

    In this new book Two Futures, two young parliamentarians take the long view. They identify the dramatic changes looming on the horizon and outline creative ideas for tackling them.

    Clare O’Neil MP is the federal Labor member for the seat of Hotham, in Melbourne’s south-east. She was Australia’s youngest female mayor and has been a management consultant with McKinsey & Company. She studied
    public policy as a Fulbright Scholar at Harvard’s Kennedy School.

    Tim Watts MP is the federal Labor member for the seat of Gellibrand, in Melbourne’s west. Prior to entering parliament he was a senior manager at Telstra. He has been a lawyer at Mallesons Stephen Jaques and studied at the London School of Economics.