Australian Capital Territory

Women Doing Economics in Government: Challenges and Opportunities


From: Thursday November 14, 2019, 5:00 pm

To: Thursday November 14, 2019, 7:00 pm

Women Doing Economics in Government: Challenges and Opportunities

While numbers are declining for women studying economics and pursuing economics as a career, there is currently a critical mass of women with an economics background working across the Australian Public Service on important public policy issues and providing advice to Government. 

Please join us to hear from senior women economists working in the Australian Public Service to learn more about career pathways, overcoming challenges and the diversity of opportunities.


  • Melissa Bray – General Manger, Economic Advice Service, (Department of Industry)
  • Katrina Di Marco – Assistant Secretary, The Project Office (PM&C)
  • Rachel Lloyd – Assistant Secretary, Taxation, Financial Sector and Employment (PM&C)
  • Linda Ward – First Assistant Parliamentary Budget Officer, (PBO)

The panel will be followed by drinks and the chance to meet colleagues from across government and the broader WEN network.

Event Details:

Date: Thursday 14 November, 2019
Time: 5:00pm- 7:00pm
Location: Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, 1 National Circuit Barton
Cost: This is a free event. Participants are encouraged to join and support the Women in Economics Network

* Nibbles and drinks will be served 


                Melissa Bray commenced in her current position as head of the Economic Advice Service in the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science’s Office of the Chief Economist in April 2018. Her responsibilities include providing economic advice and analysis, information and data to government and external stakeholders.  Publications from Melissa’s branch, including the Resources and Energy Quarterly and Industry Insights are available on the Department’s Office of the Chief Economist website

Melissa has worked in a variety public policy roles. Previously, she spent 18 months at the Productivity Commission working on the first five-yearly Productivity Review ‘Shifting the Dial’ and then the Inquiry into Competition in the Financial System.  As an adviser and then senior adviser at Treasury, Melissa specialised in taxation, superannuation and budget policy. Melissa was a member of the Harper Competition Policy Review secretariat in 2014-2015 and she also spent 15 months working as an adviser, and then senior adviser to two Assistant Treasurers.

Melissa commenced her career in the private sector with a small economic consultancy firm and also has experience working for other Federal and Western Australian public service agencies.

Melissa completed her undergraduate studies in economics at ANU and she holds a Master of Taxation Law from the University of NSW.          

Katrina Di Marco is an Assistant Secretary in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (PM&C), having previously been Director of Policy and Senior Adviser (Economic) in the Office of the Prime Minister, the Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP.  As Assistant Secretary in PM&C’s Project Office, she has been Director of several projects, including on Policy Capability and is currently Co-Head of the National Waste and Recycling Taskforce.

Katrina joined the then Department of Industry, Tourism and Resources as a graduate in 2005. From 2008 she worked in the Treasury in both the Budget Policy Division and the Macroeconomic Conditions Division. In 2014 she undertook a secondment to BHP Billiton as a Senior Economist based in Singapore.

Katrina holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Economics) and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Wollongong.

Rachel Lloyd is currently Assistant Secretary, Tax, Financial Sector and Employment at the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.  During her time at PM&C she has had short term secondments to the Taskforce supporting the review of the Vocational Education and Training system and to the Office for Women.  Before joining PM&C Rachel spent almost 10 years in Treasury, worked at the Parliamentary Budget Office in its first year of operation and at NATSEM at the University of Canberra.

Rachel was the co-chair of the PM&C women’s network in 2016-17 and is a mentor for the APS-ANU Women in Economics mentoring program.

Rachel has degrees in Economics and Asian Studies from ANU and is mother to two active daughters who regularly require her taxi services and homework help.

Linda Ward is the First Assistant Parliamentary Budget Officer responsible for leading the Fiscal Policy Analysis Division of the Parliamentary Budget Office. A key role of her division is conducting and publishing analysis that enhances public understanding of the budget and fiscal policy settings.

Prior to this, she was a senior executive at the Commonwealth Treasury, working in the Individuals and Indirect Tax Division of Revenue Group and International Policy and Engagement Division of Macroeconomic Group.

Linda began her public service career at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet where she worked for several years in a range of economic policy roles.  She has also worked as an economic adviser to a senior Cabinet minister and as a senior macroeconomist at BHP Billiton’s Singapore Office.

Linda holds a Graduate Certificate in Public Policy and Finance from the University of Canberra, Master of Public Policy degree from Japan’s National Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS), and a Bachelor of Economics (Honours) from the University of Sydney.

Linda is Deputy Chair of the Women in Economics Network committee (Canberra).

The Women in Economics Network was formed in 2017 to promote and support the careers of female economists in Australia. The objectives for the Women in Economics Network are to increase the representation of women at all levels of the profession, promote public contributions by female economists and encourage young women to study economics.

Please note that registration is required and numbers are limited. Both women and men are welcome to attend the event.

This event is sponsored by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and supported by the PM&C Women’s Network.





Sorry: Event is Fully Booked


Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet

1 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600

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