future[inc] is Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand’s thought leadership initiative which contributes to macroeconomic discussions and public policy-making. Our full suite of thought leadership papers, business briefing series and guidance materials can now be found on

What is the future for offshoring?

Globalisation, the age of technology and increasing pressure to reduce costs have given rise to outsourcing and offshoring. Offshoring is a strategic tool used by organisations to reconfigure their activities across geographic locations – the focus and trend has traditionally been on information technology and manufacturing, however it is now a common strategy for many organisations in the services sector. The growth in the offshoring of services from Australia and New Zealand is a consequence of the increased tradability of services, arising from trade liberalisation and rapid technological developments. However, many offshoring models are now maturing and moving away from a focus on pure cost savings to recognise other benefits such as increased efficiency and flexibility and access to a more diverse range of skills. This paper explores the role offshoring can play in the economic future of our nations and where the opportunities for organisations may lie.


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What is the future for offshoring? What is the future for offshoring?   (1 MB)
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What is the future for offshoring?

Food, Farming and our Future

Food, farming and our future dives into how we can create farming systems to feed a prosperous future. It’s no secret that the rapid urbanisation of the 20th century has driven a massive change in our lifestyle and diet. Add to this the dramatic cultural shift as immigration and urbanisation has left most Australasians with no family connection to the farm, and some children with the impression that food comes from a packet – not a paddock or pasture. Farming will be at the centre of Australia and New Zealand’s future economic prosperity, but disruption will leave its mark. Today the tools of farming have moved from tractors and ploughs, to iPads and drones and will shift to precision agriculture, alternative foods and on-farm robotics. This paper also addresses what needs to be done to attract talented people to the sector, a wide range of talent and skills is crucial for realising the long term potential of agriculture for both economies. Considered to be the food bowl of the Asian region, Australia and New Zealand farmers collectively will only be providing food to feed around 100 million people or just over 1 per cent of the global population by 2025. How do we address these issues? Join the conversation.


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Food Farming and Future

Disruptive Technologies: Risks, Opportunities – can New Zealand make the most of them?

A future with robots and sprightly centenarians is one of the most fundamental shifts that is already upon us. Technological change is gathering pace at a speed traditional businesses are scrambling to keep up with. The structure of New Zealand’s economy is being challenged by changing technology along with our role within the global economy faster than ever before. Current business models won’t be sustainable, and the need for change is becoming urgent. Public debate on the appropriate role of technology is New Zealand’s economy and society is needed to ensure we address these issues as a nation. This paper considers the impact technological disruption may bring to New Zealand and the extent to which we are prepared to take advantage of this disruption. Chartered Accountants ANZ values the need to understand the risks and opportunities associated with disruptive technologies, challenge the existing paradigm sand use this knowledge to make informed decisions on the best way to navigate this sea of change. Join the conversation.


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Disruptive Technologies Disruptive Technologies: Risks, Opportunities – can New Zealand make the most of them? (1 MB)

Disruptive Technologies

Will Technology disrupt our existing and future infrastructure?

Technology has changed the challenges of infrastructure. It has become disruptive – and powerful source of innovation and renewal for the industry. The way that priorities are set and met has been transformed by the collaboration of technology in infrastructure. Population growth has meant we are faced with responding to the challenges that arise from this issue. We are also met with opportunities that rapidly arise to create long and short-term solutions. This paper explores how technological innovation is changing and will continue to change the way infrastructure is optimised and utilised and how businesses and people use infrastructure


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FutureInc Technology disrupting our infrastructure?

Are Australia and New Zealand Corrupt?

Australia and New Zealand perform well in global measures of corruption, and both countries trade on reputations for honesty and integrity. However, rates of corruption are reported to be rising and we are trading increasingly often with countries that are considered to be highly corrupt. Despite positive survey rankings, Australia and New Zealand have been subject to harsh criticism in recent years for what is perceived to be a lackadaisical approach to corruption. This paper examines the perception that Australia and New Zealand are nations relatively free of corruption and what is in place to mitigate it.



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Australia and NZ corrupt Are Australia and New Zealand Corrupt? (2 MB)

Are Australia and New Zealand Corrupt

Noise, Numbers and Cut-Through

Are traditional financial reports still a valid part of organisational communication and accountability? Or has the financial report become an impenetrable collection of numbers and words, prepared only for compliance purposes, and only understood by a few technical elite? Is financial reporting keeping up with increasingly complex demands of business? What effect is digital disruption having?

Noise, Numbers and Cut-Through looks at the effectiveness of financial reporting as a communication tool and responds to these questions by examining the experiences of two leading companies and their assault against disclosure overload.


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noise numbers cut through future inc

Fast Forward: Leading in a Brave new world of Diversity

What do leaders need to be good at today to create business success tomorrow? Diversity of thought, markets and talent are heightened by increased global mobility, technology and new ways to communicate. Everyone contributes and everyone benefits. But to get this right, and really harness the power of diversity, leaders need to understand the potential of an inclusive culture. This paper provides leaders with great insight about driving inclusive behaviour and thinking which translate into future business success.



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Digital Currencies Fast Forward: Leading in a Brave new world of Diversity (1 MB)

Digital Currencies

Revolutionising Reporting: Why Care?

Revolutionising Reporting is the latest report on auditing that discusses the opportunities and challenges of the introduction of Key Audit Matters (KAM). In an increasingly complex and connected business world, investors are demanding more evidence they can trust those managing their investments. These demands extend to all participants in the financial reporting chain. Directors are being challenged to explain complex affairs more clearly. Auditors are being challenged to explain their work and focus.

Since auditing began, consistency in how auditors report to stakeholders has been a prominent feature. Audit is complex, technical work and consistency in explaining the role and results of the audit work has taken prevalence. The increasing demands for transparency of process, to help justify trust, has led to the introduction for the first time of unique commentary in the audit report to stakeholders. This is a major change to market communication. In this paper we highlight the key messages and insights to demonstrate why this matters.


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Risk-Wise - FutureInc paper Revolutionising Reporting: Why care? (1 MB)

revolutionising reporting

Digital Currencies: Where to from here?

From barter to Bitcoins, digital currencies have gained our attention and continues to raise questions as it grows significantly in scope and function. Is it here to stay? Is it a fad? What implications do digital currencies have on our tax and financial systems? Is it the future and where to from here? The latest future[inc] paper examines the most popular of the digital currencies, Bitcoin and outlines the current state of play.



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Digital Currencies Digital Currencies: Where to from here? (1 MB)

Digital Currencies

Risk-Wise and A Fair Go – A Plan for Australia’s Continued Prosperity’

Australia is known for our ‘fair-go’ approach, but are we still delivering? Are we getting the balance right between risk and return as a nation? future[inc]’s latest thought leadership insight starts the conversation around how much risk we should expect government to regulate, how policy makers can provide equality of opportunity and what impact these decisions are likely to have on growth. This paper is the second in a series looking at the changing nature of policy-making in Australia.



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Risk-Wise - FutureInc paper Risk-wise and a Fair Go - A plan for Australia's Continued Prosperity (1 MB)

Risk-wise and a fair go a plan for Australia's continued prosperity - FutureInc paper

Protecting our Cyber Future. Be proactive before it’s too late.

The cost of cyber attacks to businesses and individuals globally is estimated to be around USD $133 billion, $1 billion in Australia and $625 million in New Zealand. Cyber security is an escalating risk and has become top priority for the boardroom agenda and CIO’s all over.

The nature of today’s cyber attacks are increasingly sophisticated and complex, driven by elaborate and resilient professional groups that innovate faster than their targets. Cyber attacks are no longer restricted to targeting customer credit cards – on the perpetrators list is your brand, reputation, share price, goodwill and trust. Businesses need to consider compliance and cyber security measures that are capable of preventing attacks.

Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand latest insight serves as a guide to thinking about dealing with a cyber threat and encourages business to move from being reactive to being proactive before it's too late.


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Protecting our Cyber Future - FutureInc paper Protecting our Cyber Future (982 kb)

Protecting our Cyber Future - FutureInc paper

Is Policy Making Measuring up? Rethinking how we measure the success of a nation

In the quest for measuring progress and being able to compare this progress against other nations, welfare has become synonymous with Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Yet GDP is not a welfare measure: rather it is a measure of economic activity. Interest is growing in communities, governments and internationally as to how a more complete picture of progress can be shown, one which recognises environmental and social outcomes as well as economic aspects. Accounting professionals themselves are increasingly being asked to go beyond the direct financial metrics of businesses, and consider wider sustainability impacts and interactions. Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand has sought to identify what needs considering in the policy making process in order to allow the economies to cope with global demands and developments.


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Is Policy Making measuring up? (1.74 MB)

A plan for New Zealand's continued prosperity

Developing a plan for New Zealand’s continued prosperity is part of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand’s future[inc] thought leadership series and identifies the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that will collectively shape the performance of the New Zealand economy in the short, medium and long-term.


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A plan for New Zealand's continued prosperity. (1.71 MB)

An economic policy platform for the next term of government.

In An economic policy platform for the next term of government we present perspectives to assist Australia’s political leaders in shaping their agenda about what the federal government should be focusing on.


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An economic policy platform for the next term of government. (541kb)

Developing a plan for Australia's economic prosperity

Australia’s doing well. We’ve largely avoided the global economic slowdown, inflation is low, and the economy is growing. But we can’t be complacent.


In the first paper of the future[inc] series, Developing a plan for Australia’s economic prosperity, we analysed the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats facing Australia to provide an insightful and comprehensive review of where we are now. The current shape of Australia provides the economic analysis of Australia and its position in the global marketplace.


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Developing a plan for Australia's economic prosperity. (1.16 MB)