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Global and National Political Issues in Spotlight


Global and National Political Issues in Spotlight

University of Otago to host major Australasian Conference

Hot on the heels of an exciting election, the world of politics will be under examination at the 53rd Australasian Political Studies Association Conference held in Dunedin, New Zealand from 28–30 September 2005.

The conference is hosted by the Political Studies Department of the University of Otago, with assistance from Gender Studies and Communication Studies.

Keynote speakers are Professor David Welch (George Ignatieff Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at the University of Toronto, Canada), Australian Senator Andrew Bartlett, and Dr Helena Catt from the Chief Electoral Office, New Zealand.

Prof Welch will address contemporary issues of international political economy, comparative politics and law in his lecture entitled "Why was the 'War on Terror' both so late and such a huge overreaction?"

Prof Welch earned his PhD at Harvard University in 1990, and has since held fellowships at Brown and Princeton universities. An expert on international crisis and war, his research focuses on national and international security decision-making, intelligence and moral psychology.

Queensland Senator Bartlett will take part in a panel discussion entitled "9/11: Four Years On – Is the War on Terror being Won? An Australasian Perspective."

Senator Bartlett is deputy leader of the Australian Democrats, and is a consistent and vocal campaigner for refugees and asylum seekers. He is the only Australian parliamentarian to have visited every refugee detention centre in Australia as well as those on Christmas Island and Nauru.

Dr Catt will take part in a Citizenship panel on the impact of political education on civic participation.

Head of Department for Political Studies at the University of Otago Professor Marian Simms says the department is delighted to bring a number of prestigious guests to Dunedin for the conference.

Leading scholars in Political Studies will deliver papers to conference delegates during the three-day event, with topics grouped under Gender, Political Communication, Social and Political Theory, International Political Economy/Comparative Politics and Law, Indigenous Politics, Public Policy, Australasian Politics, and International Relations.

The Political Studies Department of the University of Otago is hosting the conference for the first time ever – as an Australasian event, the annual meetings are normally held in New Zealand every five to seven years.

For news, conference programme and timings, visit the website http://www.otago.ac.nz/politicalstudies/ and click on the "About" section.

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