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July 25, 2018

PODCAST – Competition: it’s all about the consumer

Robert Fitzgerald AM, Commissioner with the Productivity Commission and SVA Board member, talks with Stuart Lloyd-Hurwitz, SVA Consulting’s Executive Director about competition and contestability in the social sector and how it’s all about providing more consumer choice.

Full conversation (50 mins) here, or segments of the conversation below.

Read our summary article on the conversation (Competition: it’s all about the consumers) and about how boards need to put clients first (Not-for-profit boards: put clients first).

Robert Fitzgerald AM talks to Stuart Lloyd-Hurwitz
Robert Fitzgerald AM talks to Stuart Lloyd-Hurwitz

1. About competition in the social sector

Why competition is important; user choice as driver of competition; the nature of competition in social vs commercial world; whether it drives innovation. (7 mins)

2. Governments’ role in competition

How does government control markets in the social sector; what are the levers; what is government’s role in overseeing those markets; about the Productivity Commission. (7mins)

3. Future trends in competition and user choice

How will the market evolve? What does user choice mean for vulnerable users? What markets are not suitable for competition? (6 mins)

4. Competition vs collaboration

What impact will competition have on collaboration? Best practice as it relates to collaboration in a competitive market; the splintering of advocacy and peak groups and the importance of collective effort. (5 mins)

5. Promoting collaboration in the sector

What is needed to stimulate collaboration in competitive markets – from government, providers and consumers? A focus on consumers’ best interests; the role of evaluating outcomes and impact to know if we’re making a difference. (7 mins)

6. Early intervention and thin markets

What place early intervention and prevention, and thin markets such as remote or rural communities in the new world of competition? When does the competition model not work? (7 mins)

7. Directors on not-for-profit boards

Need for directors to understand not-for-profit organisations’ role; the difference between not-for-profit and commercial organisations? Guidance for directors with commercial background. (4 mins)

8. Mergers and acquisitions in the social sector

Prediction on how mergers and acquisitions will play out in the social sector; risk tolerance of not-for-profit boards; boards identifying with the organisation; boards serving founding intentions in competitive markets. (8 mins)

For more information about SVA Consulting’s work in this area, contact Stuart on

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