The future of the banking industry: a conversation with The Hon Anna Bligh AC and Adjunct Professor Bob Wigley

19 October 2022

The Australian banking sector has undergone considerable changes in recent years sparked by natural disasters, a global pandemic, emerging technologies and changing consumer expectations.

Meanwhile, an ever-increasing demand for a digital experience is becoming a key driver for bank customers, with evolving business models and customer-centred strategies. 

These changes are transforming how the entire banking industry operates and have caused us to re-evaluate the role banks play in our economy and our community. 

Join The Hon Anna Bligh AC (CEO of the Australian Banking Association and former Queensland Premier) and Adjunct Professor Bob Wigley (Chair of UK Finance) as they discuss what the future holds for the Australian banking sector. 

Meet the presenters

profile photo of The Honourable Anna Bligh AC

The Honourable Anna Bligh AC, is a respected Australian leader and former Premier of Queensland. Since 2017, she has led the Australian Banking Association through a period of critical reform, delivering the recommendations of the Royal Commission. 

While working to strengthen bank culture and rebuild trust, Anna has also driven the industry’s response to COVID-19. She was instrumental in delivering a united approach by Australia’s banks, ensuring millions of customers were supported through the pandemic.

Anna was the Premier of Queensland from 2007 – 2012. She delivered significant economic reform to the state, including investment in infrastructure, science, innovation, and the arts. In 2011, Anna managed the state’s response to a devastating series of natural disasters including cyclones and floods.

After her retirement from politics, Anna was appointed CEO of YWCA, NSW with a mission to build a safer world for women and children.

She was awarded the Companion of the Order of Australia in 2017 for services to the Parliament of Queensland, and as an advocate for education, the role of women in public life and services to the not-for-profit sector.

Anna is a non-executive director of Medibank Private and Playwriting Australia and holds Honorary Doctorates from the University of Queensland and Griffith University.

profile photo of Adjunct Professor Robert Wigley

Adjunct Professor Robert (Bob) Wigley, was appointed Adjunct Professor at The University of Queensland in the School of Economics on 1 July 2020. Since 2017, Prof Wigley has been Chair of UK Finance, after spending his banking career with Morgan Grenfell and Merrill Lynch, and was EMEA Chairman of Merrill Lynch between 2003 and 2009. Between 2006 and 2009, he was a member of the Court of the Bank of England.

He is a member of the Takeover Panel and a past member of the FSA’s Senior Practitioners Panel and was the FSA’s nominated representative on the Council of European Securities Regulators Market Consultation Panel. He led a group of industry chairmen and chief executives to author a report for the then Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, on the competitiveness of London as a global financial centre “London, Winning in the Decade Ahead”. He chaired the Green Investment Bank Commission for the Chancellor of the Exchequer, which led to the setting up of the world’s first dedicated bank to finance sustainability now owned by Macquarie. He was a Prime Minister’s Ambassador for UK Business.

Since leaving banking, he has chaired and invested in a number of fintech companies. He was instrumental in the creation of TheCityUK and has been on its advisory board since its formation. He is Commissioner for Global Britain and sits on advisory boards at both the Dept for International Trade and the Home Office. He is a member of the UK’s Economic Crime Strategic Board. He is the author of a book, Born Digital: The Story of a Distracted Generation, examining the effects of technology on Gen Z.