Australia is going through a period of great structural change. Dr Don Russell's lecture provides an insight into the role the Department plays in pursuing the Australian Government's policy agenda for strengthening the economy's productive performance and lifting the growth of productivity.The presentation provides an overview of current economic challenges and opportunities and highlight the logic of incorporating industry, innovation, science, research, skills and universities in one department.Dr Russell considers the culture of the Department within the context of the Australian Public Service, highlighting the potential for the Department to be an ideas factory driving collaboration between and within the research community, and industry and government sectors. The role of the ANU Crawford School in supporting this activity is also considered.Dr Russell is the Secretary of the expanded Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education.Before joining the Department Dr Russell was Independent Chairperson of State Super. Prior to that he worked for a variety of asset management companies in Sydney and New York.Earlier in his career Dr Russell was Principal Adviser to the Hon Paul Keating, both during Mr Keating's time as Treasurer and Prime Minister, and served as Australia's Ambassador to the US in Washington. Dr Russell has also worked as a consultant to the World Bank, Bankers Trust, Westpac Bank and Counsellor in the Australian delegation to the OECD in Paris.Dr Russell has a PhD from the London School of Economics, a MEc from ANU and a BEc (Hons) from Flinders University and also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation (CFA) 2007.