Change Agents

A podcast series about change and the people who make it happen
Change Agents is about the art of change and the people who make it happen. It focuses on real and recent case studies where often ordinary people have brought about profound social, political, cultural and political change. It celebrates their success and challenges them to explain how they did it and the obstacles they overcame along the way. Change Agents is a collaboration between The Conversation and the Swinburne Business School and Swinburne University’s Department of Media and Communication.

Latest Episodes

Change Agents: Darren Kindleysides and Don Rothwell on how Australia briefly stopped Japanese whaling

The anti-whaling group Sea Shepherd has called a halt to its famous missions tracking the Japanese whaling fleet in the Southern Ocean. For the past 12 years the group's boats have engaged in annual high-seas battles with vessels carrying out Japan's self-described scientific whaling program. But Sea Shepherd founder Paul Watson has admitted that Japan's use of military-grade technology such as real-time…

1 Host: Andrew Dodd

Change Agents: Amee Meredith and Caterina Politi on reforming 'one-punch' laws

Change Agents: Amee Meredith and Caterina Politi on reforming ‘one-punch’ laws.

The death of Melbourne heart surgeon Patrick Pritzwald-Stegmann has again focused attention on the fatal consequences of so-called "one-punch" attacks. In response to this form of violence, Australian states and territories have enacted quite different laws, often following campaigns by family members seeking justice for a lost loved one. On this episode of Change Agents, Andrew Dodd speaks to two…

1 Host: Andrew Dodd

Change Agents: David Buchanan and Fr Paul Kelly on ending the gay panic defence

Change Agents: Ending the gay panic defence.

The gay panic – or homosexual advance – defence has allowed people literally to get away with murder. It’s given them a way to convince juries they were provoked to kill because a homosexual person propositioned them. In an alarming number of cases, juries were convinced that an advance by a gay – or supposedly gay – man was sufficient provocation for killing him. Juries have opted instead to convict…

1 Host: Andrew Dodd

Change Agents: Alex Wodak and Lucy Haslam on the push to legalise medicinal cannabis

Change Agents: The push to legalise medicinal cannabis. CC BY-NC-SA46.9 MB (download)

In 2016 three Australian states and the Commonwealth passed laws to legalise the growing of medicinal cannabis. It was an extraordinary result for a campaign that struggled for decades to gain traction. Suddenly the push had taken off in the public imagination, prompting state and then federal politicians to agree to the cultivation and prescription of cannabis for people suffering from a wide range…

1 Host: Andrew Dodd

Change Agents: Stuart Morris and Leonie Hemingway on Australia's most radical reform of local government

Change Agents: Episode 3. The Conversation, CC BY-ND46.3 MB (download)

Victoria's council reforms in 1994 remain Australia's most radical restructuring of local government. The changes under the Kennett government reduced the number of councils from 210 to 79 through amalgamations. In this episode of Change Agents, Andrew Dodd brings together Stuart Morris QC and Leonie Hemingway (formerly Leonie Burke), the two people who respectively led the Labor and Liberal governments…

1 Host: Andrew Dodd

Change Agents: Susan Alberti and Debbie Lee on establishing a national women's football league

Change Agents: Establishing a national women’s football league. The Conversation, CC BY-NC-SA45.9 MB (download)

When it kicks off in 2017 the national women's football league will include eight AFL teams from five states, with at least another five likely to follow soon after. The national competition is the culmination of decades of work by women's football associations around Australia. These have steadily grown and overcome ignorance and discrimination to gain greater acceptance. On this episode of Change…

1 Host: Andrew Dodd

Change Agents: Rhonda Galbally and Bruce Bonyhady on the birth of the NDIS

Change Agents: Rhonda Galbally and Bruce Bonyhady on the birth of the NDIS.

This is the first program in a new podcast series, Change Agents. It will focus on examples of ordinary people who have brought about profound social, political and cultural change, celebrating their success and explaining how they did it. The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is the biggest social reform in Australia this century. By 2022 it will help half a million people access comprehensive…

1 Host: Andrew Dodd

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