As wealth has increased in developed countries like Australia, we are seeing a “paradox of progress”. Many of the indicators of health and wellbeing for children and young people are showing increases in adverse outcomes and decreases in the proportions of children doing well. Many services in health, mental health, education, child protection and the justice system are overwhelmed by their level and complexity. The data also show that risk factors for many of these outcomes are increasing and protective factors decreasing. The response of governments has lacked a preventive approach which means that it is likely that these poor outcomes will continue to increase.
Professor Fiona Stanley AC will give a summary of how her career has been influenced by the societal environments which influence the problems in our young people. Her journey began as a young medical doctor treating Aboriginal children with severe preventable diseases to a career in public health and a focus on a national agenda for children. The realisation that societal factors in early life are the most important for the healthy development of children has led to participating in the Australian National Development Index. This project acknowledges that focusing on GDP as a singular measure of societal progress is harmful to a society and does not contribute to the wellbeing of the population.
This event is the fifth in the Melbourne Graduate School of Education Dean's Lecture Series 2018.
Professor Fiona Stanley AC
Director, ANDI (Australian National Development Index)
Fiona Stanley AC is a national and international leader in public health, researching the causes of major childhood illnesses. Fiona is a UNICEF Child Ambassador, holds distinguished professorial appointments at the Universities of WA and Melbourne, is a former Australian of the Year, a ‘National Living Treasure, was rated ‘Most Trusted Australian’ in 2011 and has a hospital in Perth named after her.