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2016 Conference - Adelaide


The Samuel Griffith Society held its 2016 conference in Adelaide.  It was (at the time) the best-attended conference in the history of the Society.  Key speakers included the 28th Prime Minister of Australia, the Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia, and the Chief Justice of South Australia. 

“We must accept that for a society to work and especially for a culturally and ethnically diverse society to work, there must be an ethic of respect for the dignity of all its members”

The Hon Chief Justice Robert French AC

Samuel Griffith Society

The conference featured a number of interstate and international speakers from a variety of disciplines, including chief justices, journalists, academics, politicians,  and senior counsel.

A copy of the program can be found here

A copy of the Speaker Biographies can be found here.

A copy of the flyer for the Sir Harry Gibbs Memorial Oration can be found here.

A main theme of the conference concerned the question of rights, with a particular emphasis upon freedom of speech.  Other themes included judicial method, the reserve powers, and the officers of the parliament. 

The following papers were presented to the conference:

The Hon. Robert French, AC
Giving and Taking Offence

Brendan O’Neill
Hatred: A Defence

John Roskam
Prior v Queensland University of Technology

The Hon. Tony Abbott
Cultural Self-Confidence: That is What is Missing

The Hon. Chris Kourakis
In re Revenue Taxation & the Federation: The States v The Commonwealth

Professor Jeffrey Goldsworthy
Is Legislative Supremacy Under Threat?

Dr Lael Weis
Originalism in Australia

Simon Steward, QC
Taxation of Multinationals: OECD Guidelines and the Rule of Law

Professor James Allan
Australian Universities, Law Schools and Teaching Human Rights

Margaret Cunneen, SC
Great Harm to Innocent People: An ICAC story

Sir David Smith, KCVO, AO
The Dismissal: Reflections 40 Years On

Don Morris
Reserve Powers of the Crown: Perils of Definition

The Hon. Dr Ken Coghill
The Speaker

The Hon. Dr Peter Patmore, AM
Clerks of Houses of Parliament