The inside track to a career in diplomacy: a perspective from Sue Boyd

Sue Boyd book launch

Online event.


In 1989, Sue Boyd was one of only four female Australian ambassadors in the world. She is a vital figure and advocate who paved the way to the current 43% female representation in Australian Heads of Mission today. She shares her experiences and story in her memoir Not Always Diplomatic: An Australian Woman’s Journey Through International Affairs.


Sue Boyd – Author and former Australian diplomat;

Jenny McGregor – Founding CEO, Asialink.

This event will be moderated by Professor Michael Wesley, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of The University of Melbourne.

This in-conversation style talk will unpack the challenges faced by women in international diplomacy and public service. This event will discuss:

  • Sue Boyd’s memoir and reflections of her time in Asia and beyond
  • The challenges that women in leadership roles face in international diplomacy
  • Trends in female participation, and how to increase women’s roles in government
  • Have women shattered the glass ceiling in diplomacy, and broken the barriers to fruitful careers in foreign service, or is politics in Australia still an old boys club?
  • What are the pitfalls both men and women should look out for if they had ambitions to work in public service and foreign policy?
  • What career strategies should women employ, and what work still needs to be done to achieve gender equality post-COVID 19?

Please visit the Asialink Business site for more information.