On 21 October, the German-Chamber of Industry and Commerce, together with Premium Partner SAP, hosted a roundtable discussion followed by an exclusive luncheon on the occasion of the visit of Professor Dr Maria Boehmer, Minister of State and head of the German side of the Australia-Germany Advisory Group (AGAG).
Following the Chamber’s successful President’s Mission to Germany in July in connection with the first meeting of the AGAG, headed up by Professor Böhmer on the German, and Finance Mathias Cormann on the Australian side, the Chamber was delighted to take up one of the main topics of the delegation meetings and discuss further as part of the round table: “Diversity and Inclusion”. Whilst a wide field, the group decided to focus on the question how diversity can benefit organisations, and how it can be achieved through better vocational training and teacher training.
Chaired by the Chamber’s Executive Director Kristian Wolf, the results of the round table will be collated and taken to the Advisory Group consultations in Canberra from 22 October.
Following the roundtable, about 50 invited guests joined Professor Boehmer at a luncheon at the Quayside Room of the Museum of Contemporary Arts at Circular Quay. Chairman of the Board Ron Koehler opened the event, followed by Chamber President Lucy Turnbull AO who welcomed the guests by emphasising the importance of the German Australian relationship. After the entrees, His Excellency Ambassador Dr Christoph Mueller introduced Prof Boehmer by highlighting her achievements in relation to diversity, integration and education. Prof Boehmer subsequently presented a range of highly interesting and relevant thoughts on said topics, concluding that diversity, if managed in the right way, ultimately even leads to profitability for organisations and businesses.
Main course was enjoyed before the second key note speaker of the day took to the lectern. Introduced by Simone Whetton, Partner at Colin Biggers & Paisley, Professor Michelle Simmons, Scientia Professor of Physics and Director of the Centre for Quantum Computation & Communication Technology UNSW, gave a highly impressive presentation of her and her team’s efforts to win the race to build the first commercially viable quantum computer, and how she as a female leader succeeds in the traditionally male dominated environment of science and computing.
The event concluded with Kristian Wolf thanking the speakers and guests, as well as SAP for their generous event support.