- Andrea Durbach
Professor, Director - Australian Human Rights Centre
In mid-2004, after 13 years at the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC), 7 as Director, Andrea took up a joint appointment as Associate Professor and Director of the Australian Human Rights Centre in the UNSW Faculty of Law. Born and educated in South Africa, she practised as a political trial lawyer and human rights advocate, representing victims and opponents of apartheid laws. In 1988 she was appointed solicitor to 25 black defendants in a notorious death penalty case in South Africa and later published an account of her experiences in Upington (Allen & Unwin 1999) (short-listed for the Alan Paton Award).
After leaving South Africa in 1989, Andrea worked as a solicitor at Freehills Hollingdale and Page in Sydney in their industrial law and commercial litigation departments and in 1991, she joined PIAC as Assistant Director, establishing and becoming co-ordinator of its Public Interest Clearing House in 1992 and Head of Legal Practice in 1994. She was appointed PIAC's Director in 1997. While at PIAC she participated in the development of major PIAC and PILCH projects, including the Homeless Persons Legal Service, a proposal for a national Stolen Generations Reparations Tribunal and the establishment of the National Pro Bono Resource Centre. She initiated a number of amicus curiae interventions in key public interest cases and developed and taught a winter and summer school intensive course for final year law students, Practising in the Public Interest.
Andrea has been a part-time member of the Administrative Decisions Tribunal (Legal Services Division) and part-time commissioner of the NSW Law Reform Commission. She is a Foundation Fellow of the Australian Academy of Law and is currently a member of the board of the NSW Legal Aid Commission, the editorial board of the Australian Journal of Human Rights and the Advisory Council of Jurists of the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions.
Andrea was appointed part-time Deputy Sex Discrimination Commissioner at the Australian Human Rights Commission from 2011-2012. In 2013, Andrea was awarded the Australian Human Rights Commission Human Rights Law Award for her promotion and advancement of human rights in Australia through the practice of law.
Areas of expertise
Access to justice, legal ethics and public interest litigation; the implementation of economic, social and cultural rights, with a particular focus on health; reconciliation and facilitating reparations for the Stolen Generations; the role and impact of national human rights institutions in the Asia Pacific region (the subject of a 3-year Australian Research Council funded project with the Asia-Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions); gender discrimination and violence against women
Cristy Clark (PhD) - Resolving the crisis of access: A case for recognition of the human right to water (with Prof Rosemary Rayfuse) (submitted March 2013)
Louis Schetzer (PhD) – Human rights charters and the outsourced state (with Prof Andrew Byrnes)
Ayah Omran (PhD) – Incorporating gender equality concepts in the future penal code of Palestine: a comparative study (with Prof Jill Hunter)
Emily Waller (PhD) - The phenomenon of stigmatisation related to sexual violence in conflict affected-settings: An exploration of dynamism, transformation and justice (with Prof Jill Hunter)
Eva Buzo (PhD) - Engaging men in addressing sexual and gender-based violence in post-conflict settings: the case of Sri Lanka (with Prof John de Wit)
2014: DFAT Grant to undertake research to develop educational resource for use by 16 African national human rights institutions to address discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity;
commissioned by the Australian Human Rights Commission and the Commonwealth Forum of National Human Rights Institutions (CFNHRI) ($30,000)
2013: Australian National Commission for UNESCO grant (with Dr Lucas Lixinski) to co-convene international workshop on cultural heritage and human rights and co-edit publication of workshop papers presented by heritage and cultural rights scholars and practitioners ($4,840)
2013 - 2015: ARC Discovery Grant (DP140102274)
: Combating sexual violence against women post-conflict through ‘transformative’ reparations: problems and prospects
(Chief Investigators Professor Andrea Durbach, Professor Louise Chappell and Associate Professor Sarah Williams ($375,000
2007 - 2010: ARC Linkage Grant (LP0776639): Building Human Rights in the Region through Horizontal Transnational Networks: the Role of the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions (CI Andrea Durbach and CI Professor Andrew Byrnes) ($215,000 from ARC, plus $75,000 from the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions)
2007 – 2009: University of New South Wales/Goldstar: Structural, Social and Behavioural Influences on Public Health Emergency Preparedness, Response and Impact Mitigation in Australia (Andrea Durbach, Michael Humphrey, Niamh Stephenson, Heather Worth, Anthony Zwi, Daniel Tarantola) ($30,000.00)
7 December 2013
5 December 2012
5 September 2012
5 September 2012