From 11 to 13 July 2018, Melbourne Law School hosted the third biennial Public Law Conference, co-organised by the University of Melbourne and the University of Cambridge. The theme of the 2018 conference was ‘The Frontiers of Public Law’. The Public Law series is the pre-eminent regular forum for the discussion of public law matters in the common law world. The first two conferences in the series were held at Cambridge in 2014 and 2016. The 2018 conference featured approximately 80 speakers, including leading judges and scholars drawn from across the common law world, and bought together over 250 delegates to discuss the most important issues in public law today. The conference series is sponsored by Hart Publishing Ltd, and we are grateful for their ongoing support.
The 2018 conference, was held at Melbourne Law School, the third in a biennial series of major international conferences on Public Law. The series was founded at the University of Cambridge, with the first two conferences held at Cambridge in 2014 and 2016. The 2018 conference was the first to be held outside Cambridge and was co-organised by the University of Melbourne and the University of Cambridge. One of the aims of the Public Law series is to enable dialogue to take place between participants from different legal systems. In order to allow this to happen within manageable parameters the focus of the conference is on common law jurisdictions.
Approximately 300 people, including 70 speakers, drawn from across the common law world attended the conference. The conference ran over two and a half days and was based at Melbourne Law School, with delegates staying at nearby accommodation.
An edited collection arising from the first conference, Public Law Adjudication in Common Law Systems: Process and Substance, was published by our principal sponsor, Hart Publishing, in 2016; and a volume arising from the second conference, The Unity of Public Law? Doctrinal, Theoretical and Comparative Perspectives, will be published later this year by Hart. Similarly, it is our intention to produce an edited collection of a small selection of the papers given at the 2018 conference.
Further information on the Public Law Conference series can be found here.
- Associate Professor Jason N E Varuhas (Melbourne)
- Dr Shona Wilson Stark (Cambridge)
- Ms Phapit Triratpan
Conference Advisory Board
- Professor Mark Aronson (UNSW)
- Professor John Bell (Cambridge)
- Professor Mark Elliott (Cambridge)
- Professor David Feldman (Cambridge)
- Professor Carol Harlow (LSE)
- Mr Richard Hart (Founder, Hart Publishing)
- Professor Cora Hoexter (Witwatersrand)
- Professor Janet McLean (Auckland)
- Lord Reed (UK Supreme Court)
- Professor Cheryl Saunders (Melbourne)
- Professor Adrienne Stone (Melbourne)
- Professor Robert Thomas (Manchester)
The full conference programme is available here.
All conference sessions took place at Melbourne Law School except for the conference dinner on the evening of 12 July, which was held at the Great Hall at Ormond College.
The conference began on the evening of 11 July 2018, at 5.30pm, with a plenary session on executive power. The speakers were Lord Mance (UK Supreme Court) and Hon Mr Kenneth Hayne (formerly of the High Court of Australia). This was followed by a welcome buffet dinner at 7.00pm, held at the Law School
The 12th and 13th of July were full days and comprised of a mixture of plenary and parallel panel sessions. Proceedings began on the morning of 12 July with a keynote plenary featuring Professor Benedict Kingsbury (NYU) and Professor Cheryl Saunders (Melbourne), who addressed the subject of the globalisation of public law. Panels featuring doctoral and early career speakers were held at 8.00am on each of the 12th and 13th. The conference ended at 5.15pm on 13 July.
Morning and afternoon tea and lunch were provided on each of the 12th and 13th of July. The conference dinner was held at 7.45pm on 12 July at the Great Hall of Ormond College, one of the colleges at the University of Melbourne, and preceded with drinks at Ormond at 6.45pm. As is tradition, the winner of the Richard Hart Prize was announced at the conference dinner.
The conference convenors are pleased to announce the following speakers for the 2018 Public Law Conference
- Professor Nicholas Aroney (Queensland), 'The Frontiers of Australian Federalism'
- Professor Mark Aronson (UNSW), Closing Plenary
- Sir Jack Beatson (English Court of Appeal), 'UK Public Law after Brexit'
- Professor Hilary Charlesworth (Melbourne), 'Assessing Comparative International Law: The Case of Australia'
- Professor Anne Davies (Oxford), 'The 'Contracting State' and the Public/Private Divide'
- Professor Megan Davis (UNSW) tbc
- Professor Laura A Dickinson (George Washington), 'National Security Policy-making in the Shadow of International Law'
- Professor David Feldman (Cambridge), 'Changing Boundaries: Crime, Punishment and Public Law'
- Professor Charles Fombad (Pretoria), ‘Taming Executive Authoritarianism in Africa: Some Reflections on Current Trends in Horizontal and Vertical Accountability’
- Justice Ellen France (NZ Supreme Court), Closing Plenary
- Professor Fu Hualing (Hong Kong), ‘Dialogue with Autocrats: Security and Freedom in Post-Transition Hong Kong’
- Professor Carol Harlow (LSE), ‘Public and Private Law: A Porous Boundary’
- Hon Mr Kenneth Hayne (formerly High Court of Australia), ‘Keeping Pace with Changes in the Use of Executive Power’
- Justice Grant Huscroft (Ontario Court of Appeal), ‘Blurred Lines? Rights Litigation and Democratic Deliberation’
- Professor Benedict Kingsbury (NYU), ‘The Frontiers of Global Administrative Law’
- Lord Mance (UK Supreme Court) tbc
- Professor Janet McLean (Auckland), ‘For a Law of Public Contract Per Se’
- Justice Debbie Mortimer (Federal Court of Australia), ‘Coming to Terms with Communal Decision-Making by Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Peoples in a Public Law Context’
- Justice Matthew Palmer (New Zealand High Court), ‘Judicial Review and Indigenous Rights’
- Professor Cheryl Saunders (Melbourne), ‘Global Constitutionalism – Between Myth and Reality’
- Professor Anne Twomey (Sydney), ‘Peering into the Black Box of Executive Power - Cabinet Manuals, Secrecy and the Identification of Convention’
- Associate Professor Jason N E Varuhas (Melbourne), ‘The Reformation of Private Law? From Private Right to Public Good’
- Kristen Walker QC (Solicitor-General of Victoria), Closing Plenary
- Farrah Ahmed (Melbourne), ‘Delineating Constitutional and Administrative Law’
- Margaret Allars (Sydney/NSW Bar), ‘Public and Private Boundaries of Administrative Law’
- Michael Asimow (Stanford) and Yoav Dotan (Hebrew University of Jerusalem), ‘Between the Agency and the Court: Ex Ante Legality Review’
- Mikolaj Barczentewicz (Surrey), ‘Bringing Rigour to Fundamental Rights and Principles Reasoning’
- Benjamin Berger (Osgoode Hall), ‘The Renaissance of Sovereignty in Freedom of Religion’
- Janina Boughey (UNSW), ‘Justiciability: Its Purpose, Scope and Continued Utility’
- Eoin Carolan (University College Dublin), ‘Remedial Creativity in Common Law Courts: Transgressing the Frontiers of Public Law?’
- Eddie Clark (Victoria University of Wellington), ‘Parliamentary Adjudication: Pushing the Boundaries of the Legislative Function’
- Laurence Claus (University of San Diego), ‘Deciding Distribution’
- Margit Cohn (Hebrew University of Jerusalem), ‘The Boundaries of Executive Power? “Grey Holes”, Patchwork Legislation and Creative Compliance’
- Paul Daly (Cambridge) and Stephen Daly (King’s College London), ‘Identifying the Frontiers of Public Law Principles: Soft Law and the Normal Justification Thesis’
- Rosalind Dixon (UNSW), ‘Responsive Judicial Review and Unresponsive Legislatures’
- Andrew Geddis and Jacinta Ruru (Otago), ‘Places as Persons: Creating a New Framework for Māori-Crown relations’
- Kate Glover (Western University, Ontario), ‘The Constitutional Status of the Administrative State’
- Ryan Goss (ANU), ‘What Do Australians Talk About When They Talk About Parliamentary Sovereignty?’
- Kirsty Gover (Melbourne) and Nicole Roughan (Auckland), ‘Public, Private or International? Crown-Indigenous Fiduciary Relationships’
- Steve Hedley (University College Cork), ‘Public Law, Private Law, and the Inconvenient Truth’
- Martin Hinton (Supreme Court of South Australia) and Fiona J McDonald (Solicitor-General’s Office (South Australia)), ‘Testing the Boundaries: The Evolution of Australian Legislative Attempts to Shield Administrative Decisions from Judicial Scrutiny’
- Cora Hoexter (Witwatersrand), ‘Judicial Review and the Frontiers of South African Administrative Law’
- John Hunter (Court of Appeal for British Columbia), ‘Autonomy, Proportionality and Deference in Constitutional Adjudication: The Case of Physician-Assisted Death’
- Swati Jhaveri (National University of Singapore), ‘Executive Constitutionalism: Recognising the Constitutional Authority of the Executive’
- Tarun Khaitan (Oxford/Melbourne), ‘Constitutional Directive: At the intersection of Constitutional Morality, Constitutional Politics and Constitutional Law’
- Kathryn Kovacs (Rutgers), ‘Rules or Rulers? The Rise of the Unitary Executive’
- Mary Liston (British Columbia), ‘Representing Jurisdiction: Decolonizing Elections Law in a Multijural State’
- Chris Maxwell (President, Victoria Court of Appeal), ‘Administrative Law and Criminal Law’
- Sarah Nason (Prifysgol Bangor University), ‘Egalitarian Public Law: The Welsh Crucible Experiment’
- William Partlett (Melbourne), ‘Cooperative Federalism and Criminal Law’
- Jennifer Raso (UNSW), ‘Frontiers of Administrative Governance: Reconciling Norms at the Front Lines of Social Assistance Agencies’
- Ellen Rock (ANU), ‘Locating the Courts within the Australian Government Accountability Network’
- Paul Scott (Glasgow), ‘Public Law at the Frontier: the Law of Passports and Their Use as a Tool of National Security’
- David Sloss (Santa Clara University), ‘The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Living Constitution’
- Shona Wilson Stark (Cambridge), ‘Elusive Boundaries: Non-fettering, Consistency of Policy and Legitimate Expectations’
- Scott Stephenson (Melbourne), ‘Against Interpretation as an Alternative to Invalidation’
- Matthew Stubbs (Adelaide) and Adam Webster (Oxford), ‘Ensuring the Fidelity of Elected Representatives to the People: A Comparative Common Law Study’
- Joe Tomlinson (Sheffield), ‘Designing Digital Administrative Tribunals: A New Analytical Framework for A New Frontier’
- Kristen Walker (Solicitor-General of Victoria/Melbourne Law School), ‘Judicial Review of Governmental Publications’
- Jacob Weinrib (Queen’s, Ontario), ‘The Morality of Administration’
- Lael Weis (Melbourne), ‘Legislative Baselines’
- Hannah Woolaver (Cape Town), ‘Clarifying the Frontier between Domestic and International Public Law when States Withdraw from Treaties’
- Oliver Butler (Oxford), ‘The Distinctiveness of Public Authorities in the Regulation of Information’
- Justine Collins (Max Planck Institute for European Legal History), ‘Legal Transplantation in the British West Indies and the Reverberations Thereof, 1500-1700s’
- Anna Dziedzic (Melbourne), ‘Constitutional Adjudication by Foreign Judges and the Boundaries of the Judicial Role in Pacific Constitutional Systems’
- Jelena Gligorijević (Cambridge), ‘Privacy on the Frontiers of Public Law'
- Jeffrey Gordon (Columbia), ‘Comparative Judicial Federalism at the Intersection of Public and Private Law’
- Aishani Gupta (Toronto), ‘ICANN and Global Administrative Law: Perspectives of Public and Private’
- Harry Hobbs (UNSW), ‘Making Public Law’s Boundaries Permeable: Exploring the Relationship between Public Law, Indigenous Law and Legitimacy’
- Mariyam Kamil (Oxford), ‘Horizontal Application of Privacy: The Indian Experience’
- Caroline Kelly (Melbourne), ‘Public Law and Labour Law: The Emergence and Development of Public Law Principles in the Termination of Employment’
- Christina Lienen (University College London), ‘The Boundaries of Public Law Reasoning: Common Law Constitutional Rights as the New Frontier?’
- Katrina Malone (Cambridge), ‘The Shrinking Boundaries of Public Law in Australia: Judicial Review vs. Habeas Corpus’
- Richard Martin (LSE), ‘Beyond Lawyers: How do the Police Interpret and Apply the Human Rights Act 1998?’
- Joanne Murray (McGill), ‘The Court’s Inherent Jurisdiction Over Trusts: An Entry Point to Understanding the Legitimacy of Judicial Review?’
- Fiona Roughley (ANU), ‘Law, Politics and the Commonwealth Attorney-General’
Opening Plenary on the Frontiers of Executive Power
Lord Mance and Hon Kenneth Hayne
Keynote Plenary on Global Public Law
Professor Cheryl Saunders and Professor Benedict Kingsbury
Plenary on Public Contracts
Professor Anne Davies and Professor Janet McLean
Plenary on Indigenous Peoples and Public Law
Jill Gallagher AO, Professor Kirsty Gover and Justice Matthew Palmer
Closing Plenary on Conference Themes
Justice Ellen France, Professor Benedict Kingsbury, Kristen Walker QC and Professor Mark Aronson
Conference papers can be accessed via our online paper repository. To access the papers please click the tab below and enter the password which has been provided to all delegates. Papers will continue to be uploaded to the repository as they become available. Each delegate will also receive a USB stick with papers uploaded.
Please note that the papers are made available only to conference delegates and only for the purpose of conference discussion. As such, please do not provide access to the online repository to anyone else or provide copies of papers to others without the permission of the author.