Fitness & the future of work: time to swap out the marathon for F45 - A conversation with Karen Chester

Fitness & the future of work: time to swap out the marathon for F45 - A conversation with Karen Chester

Jobs matter – they are not only a source of income, but also a source of self-esteem, social interaction, purpose and even community. The concept of work, however, is rapidly changing with the advent of the digital economy and a rapidly aging population. So what can Australians do to improve their job prospects and security?

In this podcast, Karen Chester discusses recent trends in Australia’s labour market and the fundamental fractures in Australia’s education and training system that could be leaving us unprepared for our current and future labour markets. She also explains the Productivity Commission’s suite of policy recommendations designed to enable the continuation of equitable economic growth. These recommendations recognise that the world has moved on from the old model of getting trained at an early age for the marathon of a job for life, to a world where workers need regular F45 classes.

Karen Chester commenced as an ASIC Deputy Chair on 29 January 2019. Before joining ASIC, Karen was a Commissioner at the Productivity Commission since 2013 and Deputy Chair since May 2016.

Previously, Karen was a Partner in Mercer’s Investments business and Global Head of Infrastructure. Before joining Mercer, Karen was a Partner at Access Capital Advisers and the CEO of Access Economics. Karen has held directorships on several Australian infrastructure company boards.

Before moving to the private sector, Karen held senior economic policy roles in the Australian Treasury and the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Karen has a first class honours degree in Economics from the University of Queensland and was awarded an honorary doctorate in Economics by the University in 2017. She is also a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the podcast hosts only and do not reflect the views of their employers nor do they represent the views of the Economic Society of Australia.

Photo - Mārtiņš Zemlickis on Unsplash

Music - "Spy Glass" by Kevin MacLeod (, Licensed under
Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0,

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