Breakout Session 3

Workshop Overview

Concurrent workshops will be expertly facilitated so that the emphasis is on creation of sustainable partnerships to progress the workshop focus.

Focus Areas

Sustainable Cities and Communities

– presented in partnership with Melbourne Water and the UN Global Compact Cities Programme/RMIT

Cities around the world are facing acute challenges in managing rapid urbanisation, including ensuring adequate housing and infrastructure to support growing populations, managing the environmental impact of urban sprawl and reducing vulnerability to disasters. Furthermore, there is a need to improve resource use and reduce pollution in cities as they expand.

Workshop Co-Leads

Kate Nagato
Manager, Innovation and Resilience
Melbourne Water

Kate is leading change in how the water sector builds resilience to current and future pressures and better integrates land and water management in delivering its services to the community. With over 20 years’ experience in strategic, operational and collaborative leadership roles in land and water management, she is passionate about working together to create great places to live and work, recognising the importance of nature for our own health and wellbeing as well as the myriad other species we share the planet with and building resilience to change and future stresses

Martina Otten
Senior Manager, Operations
UN Global Compact Cities Programme



Martina is responsible for managing the operations of the UN Global Compact – Cities Programme as an International Secretariat for the urban focus of the UN Global Compact.

Martina has over 15 years international experience, having worked in leadership roles across various operational functions in large and complex global organisations.


Sustainable Development Goals

Global People Flows

The UN Global Compact on Refugees provides a blueprint for a stronger, fairer, more predictable and sustainable international response to refugees built on responsibility and burden-sharing. How can we partner together to ensure that Australia moves towards new policies based on this new comprehensive response framework for large-scale refugee movements globally?

Workshop Co-Lead

Louise Aubin
UNHCR Regional Representative

Louise has geographical responsibility for the region which includes Australia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. Louise was previously the Deputy Director (Protection Operational Support Service) in the Division of International Protection at UNHCR’s Headquarters in Geneva.

Another Workshop Co-Lead will be announced soon


Sustainable Development Goals

Beyond Reconciliation Action Plans

The SDGs present both opportunities and risks for First Nations peoples. Reconciliation Action Plans (RAPs)have become an effective tool to build relationships between the private sector, not for profit, civil society and First Nations peoples. However, of the 1100 organisations with a RAP, 85% sit at Innovate or Reflect. These workshops will look at what the principles are for creating effective partnerships to ensure organisations protect and promote the unique rights of First Nations peoples within Australia and how approaching RAPs from a human rights perspective can accelerate genuine, mutually beneficial and enduring partnerships.

Workshop Co-Leads

Erin Woolford
Senior Manager, Reconciliation

Erin, a Kuyani Arrernte woman, is a multi-award winning specialist in Aboriginal Affairs who has dedicated her life’s work to promoting truth and reconciliation; and reducing the inequality experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. Erin’s 20-year career in Aboriginal Affairs spans across the corporate, not for profit, academic, State Government and professional services sectors in remote, regional and metropolitan communities.

Sustainable Development Goals

Gender Equality

How can we make sure that women can lead the creation of solutions to issues such as climate change, economic injustice and natural disasters that have such an impact on their lives?

In 2020, the global community will take the opportunity of the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Women’s Conference to assess progress and shortfalls in equality and empowerment of women and girls. What are the partnerships needed to ensure that women’s leadership is at the forefront during the final decade of the SDGs?

Workshop Co-Leads

Michelle Higelin
Executive Director

ActionAid Australia

Michelle has more than two decades of experience working to advance women’s rights in Australia and internationally, including as the former Deputy General Secretary of the World YWCA. Michelle has served on global advisory groups to the United Nations Population Fund and the World Food Programme, and convened the NGO Working Group on Peace at the United Nations in Geneva. For the past six years Michelle has worked with ActionAid, driving gender transformative development and humanitarian programming.


Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable Finance & Responsible Investment

The SDGs provide a globally recognized benchmark for sustainable development and a framework which can help to deliver long term financial returns on investments. But what partnerships will ensure that the SDG agenda ensures sustainable finance and responsible investment? These partnerships are the outcomes we want from these sessions.

Workshop Co-Leads

Steve Gibbs
Chair and Non-Executive Director; Acting CEO
Australian Ethical

Steve joined the Australian Ethical Board in July 2012 as a Non-Executive Director and was appointed Chair in 2013.

Steve has a long history of involvement in the investment and superannuation industries, particularly focused on ethical and responsible investing. From 2000 to 2008 he was CEO of ARIA, the trustee of the CSS, PSS and PSSap superannuation schemes for Commonwealth Government employees. ARIA (now known as CSC) was and remains one of the largest superannuation schemes in Australia. Prior to ARIA, Steve was CEO of the industry body Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST).

Steve was the only Australian to receive a personal invitation from the then Secretary of the United Nations (UN) to join the steering committee which developed the UN Principles of Responsible Investment (UNPRI) and was a member of the ASX Corporate Governance Council from its inception until 2008.

Anna Skarbek
Steering Group Member
Australian Sustainable Finance Initiative

Anna is CEO of ClimateWorks Australia, a non-profit, specialist adviser committed to accelerating the transition to net zero emissions for Australia and Asia Pacific.

Anna is a former banker, lawyer and policy adviser, and currently a Director of the Centre for New Energy Technologies, the Green Building Council Australia and the Sustainable Australia Fund, and a former director of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, the Carbon Market Institute and Amnesty International Australia.


Sustainable Development Goals