30 Oct
11:00am - 1:00pm
Human Rights Violations: The Fake Face of Saudi Reforms
This seminar will highlight the deteriorating human rights situation in Saudi Arabia and the reality behind the reforms of the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman. The leader known as MBS has ended the world’s only ban on women drivers, reopened cinemas and allowed men and women to attend concerts. At the same time, writers and women activists are imprisoned, and the Saudi-led coalition is accused of numerous war crimes in Yemen. Is the Crown Prince defending women's rights in the Kingdom? Or is he trying to whitewash his image in front of the international community through these so-called reformations? In addition, our panellists will provide us with a closer look at the role of Saudi Arabia in the war in Yemen, and the Bahraini crackdown where mass imprisonment and torture have been used to silence opposition voices. Each of the panellists will address their topic in 15 mins, followed by Q&A. Fatima Yazbek, the head of the committee on studies and reports of the Gulf Institute for Democracy and Human Rights, will give an overall view of the rights situation in Saudi Arabia. Julian McMahon AC SC, a barrister working on criminal law. Julian is the President of Capital Punishment Justice Project, an organisation working to have the death penalty abolished worldwide; and was 2016 Victorian Australian of the Year. Julian will speak about the use of the death penalty in Saudi Arabia, where it’s reported 134 executions have been carried out this year. The MC for the seminar will be Rawan Arraf, an Australian-based lawyer working to develop Australia's domestic prosecutions of international crimes and serious human rights violations. She is director and founder of the Australian Centre for International Justice. Ms Saffaa, is an artist, activist, and a PhD candidate at the University of Sydney. She was reported to the Saudi authorities when her artwork I Am My Own Guardian went viral in 2016 and has since become a political dissident. She has been exhibiting and creating murals locally and internationally and her work was recently on display at the US Congress. She is shortlisted for the Index on Censorship Freedom of Expression award. This event is co-hosted by the Australian Human Rights Institute and the Gulf Institute for Democracy and Human Rights.  
07 Nov
6:00pm - 7:15pm
Future Imperfect
FREE EVENT One hundred years from now, what will be keeping us up at night? Will we have fixed today's problems or will we have created a new world of challenges?  In an evening of short talks, join a group of brilliant thinkers to explore the future of gender, privacy, pharmaceuticals, technology and the environment. This event is hosted by Marc Fennell. A World Without Pharmaceuticals  "In the future, diseases must be fought without drugs and pharmaceuticals. Can we achieve this by harnessing the cells that make up our bodies?" James Halstead The Matrix of Sex and Gender "The mind-bending science of sex shows that in the future we are likely to live in a world where there are either multiple sex and gender categories – or, preferably, none." Emma A Jane Rebuilding Data Privacy From The Ground Up "Is there anywhere in the world we're not being watched? How can we rebuild a just and compassionate society – in our communities and online – against growing corporate demands for digital surveillance?" Katharine Kemp Technology, Witnessing and War "In a world where technology is the primary witness of injustice and atrocity, could drones become tools of testimony, custodians of truth that hold leaders and countries to account?" Michael Richardson Underwater Forests: Taking Extinction Back "Pollution, warm water and fishing all threaten our oceans, but when we give nature a helping hand, its ability to help itself can be remarkable." Adriana Vergés Presented by the UNSW Centre for Ideas and UNSW Grand Challenges. Tickets Future Imperfect tickets are free. Bookings are essential. This talk is included in the Ultimate Pass. Purchase a pass for the most UNTHINKABLE experience!  BOOK NOW » Access Leighton Hall is located inside the John Niland Scientia Building at UNSW Sydney's Kensington campus, G19 on this map (PDF). If you are traveling via the University Mall, there is a lift to the right of the large set of steps at the John Niland Scientia Building. There is ramp access to Leighton Hall via the Scientia Lawn. You can be dropped off close to this ramp. Vehicles need to arrive via Botany street, Gate 11 and drive down Library Walk. The closest accessible parking is available in the Barker Street Parking Station (N18 on map).  Auslan & Captioning The Centre for Ideas can provide Auslan and captioning services for selected talks upon request.  Companion Card The Centre for Ideas supports the Companion Card program. For patrons who require assistance of a companion or carer, a second ticket is issued at no cost to the Companion Card holder. Contact To discuss your access requirements and to book selected access services, please call the Centre for Ideas on 02 9385 9844 or email centreforideas@unsw.edu.au.  The Centre for Ideas is happy to receive phone calls via the National Relay Service. TTY users, phone 133 677, then ask for 02 9385 9844. Speak and Listen users, phone 1300 555 727 then ask for 02 9385 9844. Internet relay users, visit relayservice.gov.au, then ask for 02 9385 9844.
14 Nov
5:00pm - 7:00pm
UNSW Law Book Forum: 'The Constitution of Myanmar: A Contextual Analysis'
The Constitution of Myanmar: A Contextual Analysis, by Melissa Crouch Date: Thursday 14 November, 2019 Time: 4.45pm for a 5pm start Location: UNSW Book Shop, Quadrangle Building, E15, Kensington Campus Author: Melissa Crouch, Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law at UNSW Sydney Chair: Professor Theunis Roux (UNSW Law and member of the Australia-Myanmar Constitutional Democracy Project) Commentators: Associate Professor Tarunabh Khaitan (The University of Melbourne) The Honorable Justice Michael Kirby AO CMG (co-chair of the International Bar Association Human Rights Institute, which released a report in 2019 on the trial of Ko Ni’s assassinators) About the Book In 2017, a prominent lawyer and advocate for constitutional change, Ko Ni, was assassinated at Yangon International Airport in Myanmar. His ideas about amending the 2008 Constitution were a challenge to those who hold power in Myanmar. The 2008 Constitution is the first constitution the country has had since 1988 and it is a constitution that was drafted by the former military regime. This panel will reflect upon the meaning of the Constitution and its role in shaping political debate in a country that continues to struggle with the legacy of direct military rule. As the legislature in Myanmar is currently drafting a bill on constitutional amendment, this timely panel will consider the prospects for reform. The case of Myanmar also offers an opportunity to reflect upon the possibilities and limits of the field of comparative constitutional law and society. The book, The Constitution of Myanmar: A Contextual Analysis, will be launched at the event. Refreshments will be served after the event. This event is free of charge, but you are kindly requested to register attendance by clicking the RSVP button above. Any questions regarding this event may be directed to Natalie Klein – n.klein@unsw.edu.au
15 - 16 Nov
9:45am - 3:45pm
Protecting Rights, Addressing Inequality: Writs as Constitutional Transfer
The courts are often a key site of the struggle for the enforcement of rights and accountability. The rise of constitutional adjudication globally is usually framed within the context of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the creation of independent constitutional courts in many parts of the world over the past three decades. This development is held up as a key moment in the globalization of constitutional law. And yet, there have been prior moments in history when key ideas and institutions of constitutional review spread across regions and around the world. One example is the prerogative writs, a set of common law remedies that were included in post-colonial independence constitutions across former British colonies, particularly across South Asia, as well as parts of Africa, the Pacific and the Caribbean (Crouch 2018). Constitutional writs – the remedies of habeas corpus, certiorari, prohibition, mandamus and quo warranto – are an important remedy both historically and for contemporary modes of administrative adjudication. In the immediate post-colonial era, the constitutional writs were a remedy sought for the protection of rights against the power of the state. While the postcolonial courts in Burma were among the first to develop the constitutional writs in 1948-1949, it is in India that the writs became associated with judicial activism. The writs in constitutional form were also included in places such as Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, among other countries. This workshop seeks to investigate the history, development and variations of this model of constitutional adjudication, following the transformation from the common law remedies of England to a constitutional means of protecting rights. It will also consider the symbolic status of constitutional writs, how the importance of these remedies has changed over time and under what conditions. This workshop seeks to draw attention to the role of constitutional writs as legal transfer and consider these remedies as the intersection of constitutional and administrative law and rights protection. The constitutional writs have important implications for the protection of rights against the power of the state and for addressing inequality. Papers in the workshop will consider the following questions: To what extent did courts have writ jurisdiction prior to independence from colonial rule (ie under the common law), and how was this power used to protect rights? How did the Indian constitution-makers formulate and understand the importance of the constitutional writs and the relationship with the provisions on rights? Why did other countries decide to include the constitutional writs in their independence constitutions? Was it part of a strategy of borrowing from the Indian constitutional model more generally? To what extent were specific discussion had over the inclusion of remedies and rights provisions? To what extent has the use of the constitutional writs as a remedy for the protection of rights against the state and to address inequality changed over time? Following Anuj (2017), to what extent do the constitutional writs serve the middle class, rather than offering a remedy for the poor against the abuse of power? Countries with constitutional provisions on quo warranto continue to grant this remedy, while its use has died out in Western common law jurisdictions. Why is this the case? When is quo warranto as a remedy granted and how in what kinds of cases is it used in today? This event is sponsored by UNSW Law School and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung.
26 Nov
9:00am - 5:00pm
Good decisions: Achieving fairness in refugee law, policy and practice
Kaldor Centre Annual Conference 2019 Good decisions: Achieving fairness in refugee law, policy and practice Every day, decisions are made about whether people need international protection because they are at risk of persecution or other forms of serious harm. A variety of people make these life-or-death calls – immigration officials at the airport, tribunal members and judges, public servants, even Ministers themselves. In another sense, the decisions are also made by the general public, because the politicians they elect to public office will shape the overall approach. The 2019 Kaldor Centre Annual Conference will bring top Australian and global thinkers together to explore aspects of refugee decision-making from the micro to the macro level – from individual cases through to wider public policy. It asks how we can ensure that refugee decision-making is fair, transparent and protection-sensitive, with outcomes that are consistent with international law. Registration is essential. Register here See the Draft Conference Program For any enquiries please contact us at: kaldorcentre@unsw.edu.au Presented by  Conference Sponsors The Kaldor Centre would like to thank the following sponsors for their generous support of the 2019 Annual Conference. To discuss available sponsorship opportunities please contact Frances Voon, Executive Manager at: Frances.Voon@unsw.edu.au.            
29 Nov
12:30pm - 2:00pm
CIBEL Lunch Seminar: The latest development in China’s specialized intellectual property court system
Herbert Smith Freehills China International Business and Economic Law (CIBEL) Centre invites you to attend CIBEL Lunch Seminar "The latest development in China’s specialized intellectual property court system" given by Professor Mingde Li on 29th November. Abstract China established its modern intellectual property system in 1978 and has followed a trend of special trial of intellectual property cases. In this respect, China established the special intellectual property tribunals in the Supreme Court, High Courts, some intermediate courts, and basic courts.   On the basis of the special tribunals, the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress passed a decision in August 2014 to establish three intellectual property courts in Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou. Up to October 2019, in addition to three intellectual property courts, 21 intellectual property courts have been established under the approval of the Supreme Court. These courts have trans-regional jurisdiction on the first instance cases concerning patent, plant variety, layout-design, technical secret, and computer program.  In October 2018, the Standing Commission of National People’s Congress made another decision to establish an intellectual property trial court in the Supreme Court to hear appeal cases from the 3 and 21 intellectual property courts. Thus China has established a special judicial system concerning the cases of patent, plant variety, layout-design, technical secret, and computer program.  This lecture will discuss the latest development in China’s specialized intellectual property system, and the problems that shall be resolved in the near future.    Registrations close on 22 November. Register Here
13 Feb
12:30pm - 2:00pm
CIBEL Lunch Seminar: Belt and Road Initiative and China’s Progressive Opening-up Pattern
Herbert Smith Freehills China International Business and Economic Law (CIBEL) Centre invites you to attend the next CIBEL Lunch Seminar "Belt and Road Initiative and China’s Progressive Opening-up Pattern" given by Professor Xinya Mao on 13th February 2020.   Abstract Since late 2013, the Chinese government, led by President Xi Jinping, has introduced a new policy initiative – the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). BRI firstly aimed at building up a closer economic relationship with China’s neighbouring countries, but now, it can be regarded as an inclusive platform for infrastructure connectivity and practical cooperation between Asia, Central Asia, Europe and whichever regions and countries provided it has the will to participate in. This seminar will examine the significance of BRI for both Chinese economic development and regional economic cooperation in the aspects of infrastructures, trade, finance, etc. in the past six years. It believes that BRI has created a new pattern of China’s opening-up at capital flows, enterprise innovation, and geographic connectivity, and so on. Going forward, China would take a series of measures during the construction of BRI and Free trade zones (FTZs) to widen its door to the outside world and boost higher-quality opening-up.   Speaker's bio Prof. MaoProfessor Xinya Mao obtained her PhD in Economics from Fudan University (Shanghai) in 2006. Since then, Prof. Mao has been working at Department of Academics, China Executive Leadership Academy Pudong (CELAP). She is currently a professor of Economics, and the director of the Belt and Road Research Centre, CELAP. Prof. Mao’s research activities have covered the Belt and Road Initiative, Pilot FTZs in China, and economic development and urbanization in China. She is an author and editor of five books, and over 50 academic articles and book chapters. Prof. Mao has received academic grants from China National Philosophy and Social Science Foundation, China Scholarship Council, Shanghai Municipal Government, Fudan University Creative Foundation, and CELAP Research Foundation.  Registration closes on 1 Feb 2020. REGISTER HERE