About the Conference

20 and 21 July 2023
Melbourne Law School

Conference Convenors Professor Adrienne Stone and Professor Jason Varuhas.

Dr Jason Varuhas

CCCS is delighted to confirm the return of its Constitutional Law Conference to be held in person at Melbourne Law School.

The 2023 conference has special significance as it will be dedicated to marking the immense contributions of Emeritus Professor Michael Crommelin AO Zelman Cowen Professor of Law, to the fields of public and constitutional law as well as to the Centre and as Dean of Melbourne Law School.

Public Lecture

The conference will commence with the inaugural Michael Crommelin Lecture, a new ongoing series of public lectures in honour of Professor Crommelin.

We are pleased to announce that the inaugural lecture will be delivered by the Honourable Robert French AC, former Chief Justice of Australia on the theme, Executive Power and Parliament – Before and After Williams.

Lecture Recording


The 2023 Conference is the 8th CCCS Constitutional Law Conference. It is forum for high level discussion of enduring themes in Constitutional law that has been held since 2009, attracting academics, practitioners and the judiciary nationwide.  In keeping with CCCS’ global profile, it will also feature prominent international public law scholars. In 2023, the conference will honour Emeritus Professor Michael Crommelin AO, Zelman Cowen Professor of Law, for his extraordinary career as a public law scholar and Dean of Melbourne Law School.

The conference will feature four panels on contemporary themes in public law including federalism, Australian democracy,  responsible government, the legal questions posed by the proposal for a ‘Voice to Parliament’, judicial review, executive power (including non-statutory power), and resources law and Australia’s environmental future.

Among the cases discused will be Palmer v Western Australia (2021) 272 CLR 505, Minister for Home Affairs v Benbrika (2021) 272 CLR 68, Garlett v Western Australia (2022) 404 ALR 182, Williams v Commonwealth (2012) 248 CLR 156, and Davis v Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs (M32/2022 & S81/2022).

A final panel will be devoted to the career and contributions of Professor Crommelin.

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Professor Nicholas Aroney (UQ)
  • Professor James Stellios (ANU)
  • Professor Anne Twomey (Sydney)
  • Professor Denis Baranger (Paris-Panthéon-Assas)
  • Justice Kristen Walker (Court of Appeal, Victoria)
  • Professor Cheryl Saunders AO (Melbourne)
  • Professor Barry Barton (Waikato)
  • Professor Jason Varuhas (Melbourne)
  • Professor Terence Daintith (IALS, Univ. London)
  • Professor Liz Fisher (Oxford)
  • Professor Carolyn Evans (Griffith University)
  • Professor Simon Evans (University of New England)
  • Associate Professor Rebecca Nelson (Melbourne)
  • Mr Eddie Synot (Griffith)