Extra: Count her in: women’s economic empowerment today and tomorrow

The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is ‘Count Her In: Invest in Women. Accelerate Progress.’ In Australia, progress toward gender equality is ongoing, yet significant challenges remain, particularly in financial security and workforce participation. Additionally, systemic issues like the undervaluation of care and the prevalence of part-time work disproportionately affect women’s financial security. So how can Australia’s governments, businesses and communities work together to tackle these persistent challenges?

In this Work with Purpose extra episode Cath Ingram, IPAA ACT board member, speaks with Cherelle Murphy, EY Oceania chief economist, and Padma Raman, executive director of the Office for Women at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, about the state of gender equality in Australia. They discuss how to  improve financial inclusion for women, and examine how gender-sensitive budgeting can pave the way for more equitable policies.

Discussed in this episode:

  • Empowering women through financial literacy
  • The importance of data sharing to improve women’s financial inclusion
  • Creating workplaces free of sexual harassment and sexual discrimination
  • The role of the Women in Economics Network in supporting women in their careers
  • Recognising intersectional challenges faced by women.

Show notes:



Padma Raman PSM

Padma Raman PSM has been the executive director of the Office for Women at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet since September 2023. She previously led ANROWS, where she was recognised for her work on violence against women and children, and has over a decade of experience as CEO of the Australian Human Rights Commission. Awarded the Public Service Medal (PSM) in 2018, she has a master of laws focusing on the legal experiences of immigrant and Indigenous women. Padma also serves as an independent member of the ANU Council, contributing to student safety and wellbeing.

Cherelle Murphy

Cherelle is the chief economist at EY Oceania, providing clients with insights into economic trends and identifying risks and opportunities in the business cycle. Before joining EY, she was chief economist at Austrade and has a background in banking with 15 years at ANZ Bank, after starting her career at the Reserve Bank of Australia. She has also worked as a journalist for the Australian Financial Review. Cherelle holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Hons) from Curtin University, a Master of Population Studies from the Australian National University, and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.