Industry Professor, University of South Australia
Jay Weatherill served as the 45th premier of South Australia and is the South Australian Labor Party’s longest continuously serving minister of the crown.
Mr. Weatherill was elected to Parliament in 2002, serving in a diverse range of portfolios including the Treasury, state development, education and the environment. He was premier from October 2011 until March 2018. He led successful national debates promoting more ambitious renewable energy targets and sovereign defense industry capabilities, and launched an inquiry to protect one of the region’s most important environmental assets, the Murray River. He pursued action on climate change through his position as international co-chair of the Climate Group, an international collaboration of business and subnational government leaders. He also established innovative partnerships with the Adelaide City Council in a joint commitment to make Adelaide the world’s first carbon-neutral city.
In approaching these challenges, Mr. Weatherill pioneered the use of direct democracy tools such as citizens’ juries, as well as the innovative use of royal commissions to lead and guide public debate. He also launched the Fund My Neighborhood program, one of the biggest participatory budgeting exercises in the world. He has always strived to involve citizens in the decisions that affect their lives, and he strongly believes that this is the way to revitalise our democracies.
Prior to his political career, Mr. Weatherill set up a law firm specialising in employment law. He holds law and economics degrees from the University of Adelaide.
Mr. Weatherill has recently been appointed as industry professor at the University of South Australia. He also serves as an ambassador for international children’s education organization Reggio Emilia.