ARC Laureate Program on
Balancing Diversity and Social Cohesion in Democratic Constitutions
Balancing Diversity and Social Cohesion in Democratic Constitutions aims to address the need to reconcile the tensions between the pursuit of diversity and the promotion of social cohesion. This critical problem becomes increasingly urgent as nations grapple with the challenges of highly diverse multi-cultural societies.
Professor Adrienne Stone, Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellow, will assemble a new interdisciplinary research team comprising leading scholars in law, world-class early career researchers, and innovative practitioners to enhance the capacity of comparative constitutional law, and enhance their skillset.
The team of researchers shall draw on the experience of constitutionalism throughout the world to investigate how Constitutions, in their design and in their application, can unify while nurturing the diversity appropriate for a complex, modern society. Markers for the project are to understand how best to balance the pursuit of diversity and social cohesion in constitutional democracies, to provide guidance to established and emerging constitutional orders, and to develop the methodological foundations of comparative constitutional law. Results from the project are intended to help governments, judiciaries and the public to resolve intense controversies over ideals.
The Laureate Program will include opportunities for collaboration, debate and information sharing through conferences, round tables and visiting fellowships. The Laureate Visiting Fellowships in Comparative Constitutional is supported by the Kathleen Fitzpatrick Fellowship Scheme and funded by the Australian Research Council, annually from 2016 – 2021.
ARC Kathleen Fitzpatrick Laureate Fellow
Professor Adrienne Stone
Adrienne Stone holds a Chair at Melbourne Law School where she is also an ARC Kathleen Fitzpatrick Laureate Fellow, a Redmond Barry Distinguished Professor, and Director of the Centre for Comparative Constitutional Studies. She researches in the areas of constitutional law and constitutional theory with particular attention to freedom of expression. Her Laureate Fellowship on the theme 'Balancing Diversity and Social Cohesion in Democratic Constitutions' investigates how Constitutions, in their design and in their application, can unify while nurturing the diversity appropriate for a complex, modern society.
Dr Erika Arban
Dr. Erika Arban is an ARC Laureate Postdoctoral Fellow in Comparative Constitutional Law. Her research focuses on comparative federalism, comparative constitutional law and legal research methodology. Before joining the project, she lectured in Comparative Federalism at the University of Antwerp (Belgium) and in Public Law at the University of Ottawa (Canada). Erika received her PhD at the University of Ottawa (Canada), where her doctoral thesis Italian Regionalism and the Federal Challenge was awarded the Governor General Gold Medal for the best thesis in the Humanities. She also holds a LLM from the University of Arizona (USA) and a Bachelor in Law from the University of Trieste (Italy).
Dr Stijn Smet
Stijn Smet is a Postdoctoral Fellow with the ARC Laureate Project in Comparative Constitutional Law. His research interests are in comparative constitutional law, human rights, legal theory (primarily on rights) and political theory (primarily on toleration and respect). His teaching interests extend to practice-based learning, including clinical legal education and mooting. Stijn is the author of Resolving Conflicts between Human Rights: The Judge’s Dilemma (Routledge, 2016) and co-editor of When Human Rights Clash at the European Court of Human Rights: Conflict or Harmony? (OUP, 2017). He has published among others in the American University International Law Review, Human Rights Law Review and Religion & Human Rights. Before joining the University of Melbourne Law School, Stijn was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Ghent University Law School (Belgium), where he also obtained his PhD in law
Mr Gary Hansell
Gary Hansell is a Research Fellow with the Laureate Fellowship Program in Comparative Constitutional Law. He completed an LL.B. at Trinity College, Dublin, where he was elected a Scholar and awarded the Kingsmill Moore Award and Henry Hunter Hamilton Memorial/Julian Prize. He was also awarded a Dean's Leadership Award in recognition of his work as Chairperson of the university's Free Legal Advice Centre (FLAC). He completed his LL.M. at Harvard Law School, where he was awarded a Dean's Scholar Prize in Law and Economic Development. His research experiences include assisting with the forthcoming edition of J. M. Kelly: The Irish Constitution and interning with a judge of the Irish Supreme Court. His research interests include constitutional studies and political and social theory.
Gabrielle Dalsasso is the Program Manager for the Laureate Fellowship in Comparative Constitutional Law. Prior to joining Melbourne Law School, she has held senior administrative positions in corporate and not-for-profit organisations.
Supported by the Kathleen Fitzpatrick Fellowship Scheme
Funded by the Australian Research Council
2016 – 2021
The Laureate Visiting Fellowships in Constitutional Law offers outstanding female doctoral and female early career researchers the opportunity to participate in an intensive mentoring program relative to the Laureate Program with Professor Adrienne Stone, ARC Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellow, for up to two months; and includes involvement in events, workshops and conferences.
Funding of up to $3000 is available for Laureate Visiting Fellows in Constitutional Law, towards the costs of travel to, and accommodation in, Melbourne, and the amount be allocated on a case by case basis. Visiting fellows from outside Australia are responsible for obtaining and funding any necessary visas.
The Laureate Visiting Fellowships in Comparative Constitutional is supported by the Kathleen Fitzpatrick Fellowship Scheme and funded by the Australian Research Council, annually from 2016 – 2021.
Visting Fellows 2017
Dr Caitlin Goss
Caitlin Goss is a Kathleen Fitzpatrick Visiting Fellow with the ARC Laureate Project in Comparative Constitutional Law. Her research interests are in comparative constitutional law, international law, and evidentiary issues in constitutional and international law. Caitlin is currently working on a monograph on interim—or deliberately temporary—constitutions, and the ways in which they affect the long-term constitutional law of the states in which they are adopted. Caitlin is a Lecturer in Law at the University of Queensland, where she teaches in constitutional law, public international law, and the law of evidence. Previously, Caitlin was at the University of Oxford, where she read for the Bachelor of Civil Law and the DPhil in Law, and served as the Graduate Teaching Assistant in Public International Law.
Dr Jenna Sapiano
Jenna Sapiano is a Kathleen Fitzpatrick Visiting Fellow with the ARC Laureate Project in Comparative Constitutional Law. Jenna is an Associate Fellow in the Centre for Global Constitutionalism at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. She completed her PhD at the School of International Relations at the University of St Andrews on peace agreements and constitutions. In 2013, she was awarded a two-year Economic and Social Research Council grant. Previously, Jenna was at the University of Edinburgh, where she completed an MSc in African Studies and an LLM in International Law. She holds a BA from McGill University (Montreal, Canada).She has worked with the International Institute for Development and Electoral Assistance and the Political Settlements Research Programme (University of Edinburgh). Jenna was the convenor in 2015-16 of the Edinburgh Constitutional Law Discussion Group. She is currently working on a paper on constitutional silences as part of the fellowship program.
Ms Gisela Ferrari
Gisela Ferrari is a Kathleen Fitzpatrick Visiting Fellow with the ARC Laureate Project in Comparative Constitutional Law. Gisela is a doctoral student at the Catholic University of Argentina, in Buenos Aires. She is currently studying the influence of the European Court of Human Rights on the Argentine Supreme Court. Her research interests are in human rights law, public international law, and constitutional law, especially cross-jurisdictional constitutional interactions. Gisela is a Lecturer at the Catholic University of Argentina and at Universidad Austral, where she teaches constitutional law and human rights law. Earlier in 2017, she was a guest researcher at the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History in Frankfurt. Previously, Gisela was at the London School of Economics and Political Science, where she completed an LL.M. in Public Law. As part of the fellowship program, she is currently working on a paper on successful constitutionalism and the reshaping of cultural and social understandings of race in Argentina.