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Hon Dr Barry
Jones AC

A national icon.


Hon. Dr. Barry Jones, AC, FAA, FAHA, FTSE, FASSA, FRSA, FRSV, FACE, FAIM is a writer, broadcaster and former Labor Minister.

Previous experience

A Member of the House of Representatives for the Victorian Electorate of Lalor 1977-98, in the first three Hawke Governments he became Australia's longest serving Science Minister 1983-90. He was a Victorian State MP 1972-77. He served as National President of the Australian Labor Party 1992-2000 and 2005-06.


In 1985 he became the only Australian Minister invited to address a Summit meeting of the Group of Seven northern industrial powers in Ottawa. In 1987 he chaired OECD's review of the Yugoslavian economy.

He is the only person to have been elected as a Fellow of all four Australian learned Academies: Technological Sciences and Engineering (FTSE) in 1992, the Humanities (FAHA) in 1993, Science (FAA) in 1996, and Social Sciences (FASSA) in 2003.

In June 1990 he took part in an international think tank invited to investigate perestroika in the USSR and make recommendations to Mikhail Gorbachev.

He served on the Executive Board of UNESCO in Paris 1991-95, as Vice President of the World Heritage Committee 1995-96 and a consultant to OECD.

In 1999 he was appointed an Adjunct Professor at Monash University and elected as a Visiting Fellow Commoner at Trinity College, Cambridge. He became Chair of the Port Arthur Historic Site Management Authority PAHSMA) in 2000, a Vice Chancellor's Fellow at the University of Melbourne 2005-07 and a Professorial Fellow from 2007.

In 2014 Barry Jones was awarded the Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) for "eminent service to the community as a leading intellectual in Australian public life, through contributions to scientific, heritage, musical, medical, political and public health organisations, and to the Australian Parliament."


His book Sleepers, Wake!: Technology and the Future of Work (Oxford University Press, 1982), having been translated into Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Swedish and braille, ran to 26 impressions.

Other books include the Dictionary of World Biography (1994), a best-seller most recently revised in 1998. His autobiography A Thinking Reed (Allen & Unwin) was published in 2006.

He was the best speaker and kept to the topic precisely. Colliers Jardine

Barry's speech suited the purpose and subject matter of our conference perfectly. He made himself accessible prior to the event to discuss his presentation, which was very helpful.

Tasmanian State Training Authority

Outstanding - a wonderful sense of Australian history and very absorbing.

Queensland University of Technology, QLD

Many of our international visitors commented how much they enjoyed hearing about Australian history and how your address contributed to their overall enjoyment of their visit to Australia. The Symposium was an outstanding success with nearly 650 delegates attending.


Barry was absolutely perfect. He had the delegates in the palm of his hand and set the scene for a great day.

The Australian Property Institute

Delegates were impressed with his informative open manner - his exchange with Pat Kane was particularly notable.

Society for the performing Arts NSW

Barry was the keynote speaker to set the theme for the conference and he did it well.

LG Pro (Local Government Professionals), VIC

Dr Jones was approachable to the audience before his address and his keynote speech was well received.

Public Sector Development

Dr Jones chose an excellent topic for an international audience, many favourable comments were received which showed that Barry 'hit the mark'.

Institution for Engineers Australia

Delegates were impressed with his informative open manner - his exchange with Pat Kane was particularly notable.

International Society for the performing Arts NSW

Dr Jones, was very professional to work with prior to and during the conference and he is an excellent presenter.

Australasian Cemeteries and Crematoria Association
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