Constitutional and Administrative Law | Law

Constitutional and Administrative Law

Research Strength

Constitutional and Administrative Law

The field of constitutional and administrative law (often referred to collectively as public law) concerns the regulation of public institutions and the exercise of their powers. In a society governed by the rule of law, the use of law to both confer authority and constrain its abuse is fundamental. This ideal can be pursued in many different ways, depending on background traditions and contextual factors that have long been the subject of scholarly inquiry.

Our research in this area is distinctive in three key respects. First, our interests are wide-ranging and include Australian and comparative federalism; the composition, ethics and powers of the judiciary; comparative constitutional law, with a particular focus on constitutional design, gender, constitutional dialogue and other forms of rights protection and review, including in respect of social rights, democracy and the Asian region; the politics of judicial review, particularly in new democracies; the relationship of indigenous peoples to the state; remedies against public law authorities; the substance and process of constitutional reform; and the intersection of public law and national security.

Second, the methodologies we employ span the full range of recognised legal research methods, including doctrinal, empirical, socio-legal, comparative and interdisciplinary methods. We also value and seek to learn from the contributions made by scholars from non-legal backgrounds.

Third, UNSW Law’s reputation in this field is defined by an ethos of active engagement. We frequently collaborate with other external scholars in large research projects and workshops. Our supervision and the creation of opportunities for higher degree research students, through conferences and structured ‘work in progress’ sessions, is central to what we do. Lastly, our research feeds into government policy processes as well as community and media debates on public law issues.



Gabrielle Appleby

Mark Aronson

Sean Brennan

Andrew Byrnes

Melissa Crouch

Megan Davis

Rosalind Dixon

Paul Kildea

Andrew Lynch

Dr Nicola McGarrity

Christopher Michaelsen

Theunis Roux

Svetlana Tyulkina

George Williams

Areas of ExpertiseSearch expertise

Research Snapshots

The High Court, the Constitution and Australian Politics

Anti-Terror Laws and the Democratic Challenge

HDR Students

Mohammad Abualrob, 'The role of the constitutional courts in democratic consolidation' (Theunis Roux/Martin Krygier)

Narelle Bedford, 'Merits review in Australian tribunals - at the frontiers of a hybrid jurisdiction' (Greg Weeks/Ben Golder/Robyn Creyke)

Lynsey Blayden, ‘Is there scope within the Australian constitutional framework of judicial review of administrative action for a more relaxed standard of unreasonable review’ (Greg Weeks/Andrew Lynch)

Chantal Bostock, ‘The review of Section 501 decisions by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal’ (Arthur Glass/Mark Aronson)

Shipra Chordia, 'Developing the doctirne of propotionality in Australian Constitutional law' (Andrew Lynch/George Williams)

Jason Donnolly, ‘Re-shaping the separation of powers in Australia – the non-justiciable nature of national interest’ (Greg Weeks/Daniel Joyce/George Williams)

Samuel Hartridge, 'Coercive preventive measures in Australia' (Chris Michaelsen/Ben Golder)

Grant Hooper, 'Through the Migration Act looking glass: Can procedural fairness be distinguished by a legislative code - towards the waterfall of invalidity' (Mark Aronson/Arthur Glass)

Ilan Lewis, ‘Sussing out the Vibe: Searching for a principled approach to acquisitions of property under the Australian Constitution’ (Brendan Edgeworth/Theunis Roux)

Mary Morrisroe, ‘Profitability in the Russian oil industry: The effect of the rule of law’ (Brendan Edgeworth/Martin Krygier)

Jennifer Norberry, ‘Law and national security crisis – contemporary Australian perspective’ (George Williams/Andrew Lynch)

Nahed Odeh, 'Constitutional design options for state formation in Palestine' (Theunis Roux/Arthur Glass/Armin Adayleh)

Soula Papadopoulos, ‘Co-operative federalism is not a constitutional term’ (George Williams/Andrew Lynch)

Sangeetha Pillai, 'Citizenship and anti-terror laws' (George Williams/Fergal Davis)

Sally Richards, 'The acquisition and circulation of legal knowledge in merits review ' (Theunis Roux/Arthur Glass/Simon Halliday)

Fritz Siregar, 'Constitutional politics in Indonesia' (Theunis Roux/Simon Butt)

Robert Woods, 'The role of legal and political norms in constraining the High Court in the context of constitutional transformations" (Theunis Roux/Martin Krygier)

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