About the Melbourne Forum

Video from Melbourne Forum 2017.
Being a part of the discussions, I have found many insights and ideas to transplant into my country. Melbourne Forum 2017 Participant


The Melbourne Forum on Constitution Building in Asia and the Pacific is an annual event that brings together practitioners and scholars from across Asia and the Pacific to explore themes of global importance in constitution building from the perspective of states in the Asia Pacific region.

The Asia Pacific is a vast, diverse and complex region. The area covered by the Melbourne Forum stretches from Central Asia in the west, to the Pacific island states in the east. The region comprises states that are vast, in terms of territory and population, as well as some of the smallest micro-states in the world. There are tremendous variations, both within and between states, in terms of culture, history, language and religion. This diversity provides a broad range of constitutional experience, generating new and challenging insights into global issues of constitution building.

All speakers at the Melbourne Forum have been directly involved in the processes of constitution-building in their respective states and polities. The success of the Melbourne Forum rests on the participants’ knowledge and experiences, their generous time commitment and their enthusiastic engagement. The format is designed to encourage the interchange of ideas, in depth discussion of shared issues and challenges, and meaningful comparison across the region. Presenters from each case study country provide brief written responses to questions based on the theme of each Forum and give a short oral presentation, with the majority of time devoted to open discussion of the themes and issues.

The Melbourne Forum aims to build connections between practitioners, scholars and organisations engaged in constitution building, within the Asia-Pacific region and globally. The knowledge and insights generated in each annual Forum are disseminated in Reports outlining the experience of the states and polities represented and Policy Briefs which capture the insights from the Forum on cross-cutting issues of global importance.