Message from the Dean

It has been a real privilege to meet with and hear from so many members of our extraordinary alumni community in my first year as Dean.

Professor Pip Nicholson, who is the new Dean of the Melbourne Law School.
Professor Pip Nicholson is Dean of Melbourne Law School. Image credit: Jorge de Araujo, Artificial Studios.

In this role I have observed that many alumni retain a connection with MLS that is particular, almost proprietary. This is perhaps most acutely felt when talking to alumni that left MLS more than 50 years ago. I was also pleased to meet with alumni in China, Hong Kong SAR, India and Vietnam, as well as in Melbourne, Sydney and Darwin this year. I look forward to the opportunity to meet with many more of you in the coming year. Thank you for your counsel.

It has also been a real pleasure to work with our students and their representatives. While we do not always agree, our debates have been considered and have included how best to be more inclusive, our assessment practices, the priority we place on attendance at MLS, and the future of work in the legal sector. I congratulate all those graduating and welcome readers who are new to the alumni community. In October, the University of Melbourne welcomed Professor Duncan Maskell as its 20th Vice-Chancellor. Professor Maskell joins us from the University of Cambridge, where he was Senior Pro-Vice-Chancellor. He takes over from Professor Glyn Davis AC, who left the role after 13 years of outstanding leadership.

Many of you may also have heard about new appointments in the higher education sector for former MLS colleagues. Our congratulations to former MLS Dean Professor Carolyn Evans, who in January will take up the role of Vice Chancellor and President of Griffith University, and to Professor Simon Evans, who began at La Trobe University in August as its Pro-Vice Chancellor, College of Arts, Social Sciences and Commerce. Congratulations also to Professor Tim McCormack, who joined the University of Tasmania as its Law Dean in 2018.

In this issue of MLS News, our Director of Studies for the Sports Law Program, Professor Jack Anderson, analyses the sport scandals of 2018, reflecting on the legal lessons learned both on and off the field. We also feature alumni working in the field of disaster law, learn from experts about the impact of online streaming on the Australian film industry, and consider the role of construction law in shaping our future cities.

Earlier this year MLS was saddened to learn of the passing of Professor Bob Baxt AO. Professor Baxt made a significant contribution to MLS through his long-standing involvement in our masters program in competition and consumer law, and as a member of the Advisory Board of the Centre for Corporate Law and Securities Regulation. MLS Associate Professor Rosemary Langford pays tribute to Professor Baxt in this issue.

MLS also mourns the loss of John Pilley, a staunch supporter of our Construction Law program. John was a member of the Advisory Board for the program for many years and was a guest lecturer.

I thank you for your contribution to the MLS community and for your ongoing support of the Law School and its activities. I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. May your 2019 be healthy and prosperous.

With best wishes,

Professor Pip Nicholson

Dean, Melbourne Law School

This article originally appeared in MLS News, Issue 20, November 2018