Our history

The Global Foundation was launched in Australia in May 1998 by the then Prime Minister of Australia, Hon. John Howard

The Global Foundation has convened and partnered in international dialogue conversation in many global locations in its 18 years of operations including in Bali, Beijing, Brisbane, Brussels, Jakarta, London, Melbourne, Noumea, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, Rome, Sao Paolo, Singapore, Sydney and Washington.

These discussions have addressed major, complex global issues, including the global economy, global food security, sustainability and climate policy, China’s emergence, Asia’s integration while at the same time encouraging a culture of deeper Australian engagement with Asia and in world affairs. The Foundation’s work is characterised by three main objectives; a high level of ambition, practical outcomes and maintaining a low profile for itself.

Formed by prominent Australian citizens with extensive global experience, The Global Foundation was launched in Australia in May 1998 by the then Prime Minister of Australia, Hon. John Howard and the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Mr Michael Camdessus.

The Governor General of Australia is our Patron in Chief and the Foundation also enjoys the patronage of many other prominent public figures.

Some highlights of our work include

  • The Foundation has convened an ongoing series of global dialogues to improve Ethical and Effective Global Governance, in partnership with eminent persons, governments, global institutions, business, academia and civil society.
  • In December 2014, the Foundation convened roundtable discussions in Rome, focusing on the theme: ‘Towards a shared narrative for the global common good, supported by more ethical and effective global governance’ featuring senior Cardinals from the Vatican and global institutional leaders, including Madame Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund.
  • The Foundation convened a multi-sectoral, strategic dialogue process in Asia Pacific, from 2000 onwards, through its Asia Pacific roundtable series, involving governments and think tanks from USA, China, Japan, Indonesia, the EU, Pacific Island states, South East Asia, Australia and 20 other nations as well as several global economic institutions, including the World Bank and IMF, academia and non-government bodies. These meetings took place in Washington, Beijing, Sydney and Singapore.
  • The Foundation convened a three-way dialogue project in 2008, meeting in Beijing and then in Washington, to enable China, the USA and Australia to discuss co-operation; the Foundation continued to advise China on its climate change policy development for a further 5 years.
  • The Foundation has played a global advocacy role, since 2013, in facilitating the formation and development of the AIIB. The Foundation has continued to advise the new AIIB as it has become operational.
  • In 2014, the Foundation launched the concept of an Asian Food Partnership, led by business, to practically increase Asian and global food security.
  • Since 1997, the Foundation has played a pivotal, unofficial role in elevating official relations between Australia and the European Union, France, India, Brazil and China, in that order, to the level of ‘strategic partnership’, while also supporting increased international co-operation involving Australia.