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 Comparative Constitutional Law, towards the costs of travel to, and accommodation in, Melbourne. The amount will be allocated on a case by case basis. As such, applicants should consider the cost implication before applying, as there may be out-of-pocket expenses not covered by the Fellowship. 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.
Dr Eszter Bodnár
Eszter Bodnár is a Kathleen Fitzpatrick Visiting Fellow with the ARC Laureate Project in Comparative Constitutional Law. Her research interest is in comparative constitutional law, international human rights, and European constitutional law. She has been an assistant professor at the Faculty of Law of University Eötvös Loránd (ELTE) in Budapest, Hungary since 2013. She is also a faculty member in the Master of Electoral Policy and Administration program of Scoula Sant’Anna, Pisa. In the last years, she has been teaching and researching in Germany, France, the United States, the Czech Republic, Portugal, Italy, and Canada. She graduated as a lawyer and worked at the Department of Constitutional Law in the Hungarian Ministry of Justice, and in the Hungarian National Election Office. She obtained her PhD degree in constitutional law at ELTE in 2013 with her thesis on the fundamental right attributes and restrictions of the right to vote that was published in Hungarian (HVG-Orac, 2014). Currently she is working on a comparative constitutional law project on open justice, seeking the answer on how the courts should answer the challenges of the 21st century in a constitutional way.
Ms Dani Larkin
Dani Larkin is a Kathleen Fitzpatrick Visiting Fellow with the ARC Laureate Project in Comparative Constitutional Law. Dani is a Doctoral student at Bond University located in Queensland, Australia. Her field of research examines the importance of protecting Indigenous cultural identity through self-determination and political participation. Dani is an Indigenous woman with connections to the Kungarakany tribe located in the Northern Territory and Bundjalung tribe from northern New South Wales. Dani has completed a Bachelor of Laws degree from Griffith University and a Masters of Laws Specialist degree in Corporate and Commercial Law and Pactice from Bond University. She is an admitted legal practitioner with several years experience working as a lawyer for a number of government agencies, including with the Australian Federal Police, the A.C.T Department of Public Prosecutions, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service, and the Australian Tax Office and now wishes to use her skills, knowledge and experience to advocate for Indigenous Peoples in Australia.
Dr Jaclyn Neo
Jaclyn L. Neo is an Assistant Professor of Law at the National University of Singapore (NUS). She specializes in constitutional law and human rights. She was a recipient of two graduate scholarships from NUS under which she completed her Masters of Law (LL.M.) and Doctor of the Science of Law (J.S.D.) at Yale Law School.
Jaclyn is an Executive Committee member of the NUS Centre for Asian Legal Studies and was also recently appointed to the editorial boards of the Asian Journal of Comparative Law and the Asian Yearbook of International Law.
Jaclyn is the sole editor of a recently published volume on Constitutional Interpretation in Singapore: Theory and Practice (Routledge, 2017). Her articles have been published in the International Journal of Constitutional Law (I-CON), Oxford Journal of Law and Religion, Human Rights Quarterly, and the Singapore Journal of Legal Studies. Her article on domestic incorporation of international human rights law in a dualist state won the Asian Yearbook of International Law’s DILA International Law Prize. She was also recently awarded the 2016 SHAPE-SEA Research Award in recognition of her research on human rights, especially religious freedom, in Southeast Asia.
Ms Swati Jhaveri
Swati Jhaveri is a Kathleen Fitzpatrick Visiting Fellow with the ARC Laureate Project in Comparative Constitutional Law. Swati is an Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Law at the National University of Hong Kong. Her areas of research are constitutional and administrative law, with a focus on Asian jurisdictions. Swati previously taught at the Faculty of Law at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. She obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Jurisprudence (First Class Honours) and Bachelor of Civil Law (Distinction) from the University of Oxford. Swati previously practised law at Allen & Overy, specialising in international commercial arbitration and is a Solicitor of the Hong Kong SAR and England & Wales and a Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. Swati is currently working on papers looking at the need for more comparison in the field of administrative law; and the role of the executive (as opposed to courts and parliament) in generating constitutional norms and meaning.
To contact the Laureate Program in Constitutional Law
please refer to the options below
Laureate Program in Constitutional Law
Melbourne Law School
University of Melbourne
Parkville VIC 3010
Call for Applications
PhD (Graduate Research) Scholarship
Applications are invited from suitably qualified scholars for a PhD scholarship to undertake a higher degree by research and join Professor Adrienne Stone’s Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellowship Program in Comparative Constitutional Law. Successful candidates must commence the scholarship in February 2018. The program is establishing an interdisciplinary research team based at Melbourne Law School and is supported by the Australian Research Council (ARC) from 2016 to 2021.
About Melbourne Law School
Melbourne Law School (MLS) is Australia's first all-graduate law faculty. Melbourne Law School was the first faculty in Australia to teach law and awarded this country's first law degrees. The Law School is now fully graduate with its Juris Doctor for admission to practice recognised as a high-level qualification in Australia and beyond. Coupled with the unrivaled excellence of Melbourne Law Masters and its excellent Graduate Research Degree programs, the Law School offers a unique opportunity for the integration of scholarship and teaching.
Its faculty is a vibrant community of creative scholars, committed to a highly collegial, research-intensive institutional life. The Law School has particular strengths in comparative analysis. It aims to integrate teaching with research and engagement activities and to engage with local, national and global communities. It is a centre for international collaboration, regularly bringing leading international scholars to Australia to teach, participate in conferences, and conduct master classes for doctoral students. The Law School is a single department faculty located in a custom-designed building in University Square. The Law School has approximately 2,200 graduate students (including JD, Melbourne Law Masters, and PhD).
About the Laureate Program
The Laureate Program in Comparative Constitutional Law aims to address a problem for liberal democracies: the need to reconcile the tensions between the pursuit of diversity and the promotion of social cohesion. The critical problem is becoming increasingly urgent as nations grapple with the challenges of highly diverse multi-cultural societies. The team working on the Fellowship will draw on the experiences of constitutionalism throughout the world to investigate how Constitutions, in their design and in their application, can serve as a unifying force while still nurturing the diversity appropriate for a complex, modern society.
This program will develop a new and comprehensive framework in which to understand how constitutions should balance the achievement of social cohesion while nurturing social diversity. Its core elements are in:
- Identifying and developing the understanding of how constitutions balance their unifying role with the need to foster diversity;
- Explaining and justifying the mechanisms by which constitutions balance these; and
- Using a broad comparative study of these phenomena to generate progress in the development of methodologies in comparative constitutional law.
In order to offer an excellent research training environment, the program will include a regular series of seminars, workshops, and reading groups designed to discuss work in progress, recent literature, and methodological and theoretical developments. These meetings will enable scholars working across disciplines to establish a shared interdisciplinary framework and language, and integrate perspectives and approaches across law, constitutional law, and related fields.
About the Team
The successful applicants will be part of a team of internationally recruited early career academics, with two postdoctoral researchers and a research fellow, and another PhD student that work with Professor Stone. Further, the award of the Kathleen Fitzpatrick Fellowship allows Professor Stone to undertake an ambassadorial role to promote women in research by providing visiting fellowships for outstanding female early career researchers in constitutional law and related fields, and is designed to build international collaboration with influential and innovative scholars and practitioners in order to make important contributions to central questions of constitutional governance.