On Life’s Lottery - Professor Glyn Davis AC presents 2021 Fairley La Trobe Lecture

Birth is a throw of the dice. The consequences last a lifetime. You get no say in in the family you're born into, the body, the time, the place. For some people, the lottery never delivers a pay-off.

Event link to watch recording of Lecture: Fairley La Trobe Lecture: On Life's Lottery

Each year the Fairley Foundation partners with La Trobe University to present a free public lecture from a prominent Australian.  Professor Glyn Davis AC, CEO of the Paul Ramsay Foundation, delivered this year's lecture.

Australia is often considered the land of the 'fair go', of choice and equal opportunity. But behind the facade of meritocracy lies an uncomfortable truth: much of your life is already decided by the lottery of where you are born and who you are born to. Entrenched inter-generational poverty, like the property of the wealthy, can be handed down from parent to child.

With one in eight adults and one in six children living below the poverty line in Australia, Glyn Davis asks the question: If life is a game of chance, what responsibility do those who are given a head start have to look after those less fortunate?


Professor Glyn Davis AC

Glyn Davis AC is CEO of the Paul Ramsay Foundation, which works to end intergenerational poverty. He was previously Vice Chancellor of the University of Melbourne and remains Distinguished Professor of political science at the Australian National University and visiting Professor at the Blavatnik School of Government, Oxford. He delivered the Boyer lectures on the future of higher education in 2010.

Andrew Fairley AM

Andrew Fairley practises as a Commercial Lawyer at Hall & Wilcox in Melbourne. He has a long involvement with the philanthropic sector, and has been Chair of the Fairley Foundation since 1999. He is a great-nephew of Sir Andrew Fairley.

He is also Chair of the Foundation for Alcohol Research & Education, and Deputy Chair of the Mornington Peninsula Foundation.