2018 Constitutional Law Conference and Dinner

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Art Gallery of New South Wales
Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law
8.30 am - 5.00 pm
Fri, 2018-02-23

A major conference on constitutional law, the seventeenth consecutive staging of this flagship event, was held at the Art Gallery of New South Wales on Friday 23 February 2018. The event was organised by the Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law.

The conference focused on developments in the High Court and other Australian courts in 2017 and beyond and was addressed by leading practitioners, judges and academics.

The cases covered included the striking down of State anti-protest laws in Brown v Tasmania; the section 44 disqualification cases about citizenship and Mr Bob Day’s interest in a lease with the Commonwealth (Re Day (No 2)); and the Commonwealth’s authority to conduct the same sex marriage postal survey (Wilkie v Commonwealth).

The conference was followed by dinner at NSW Parliament House, hosted by NSW Attorney-General, the Hon Mark Speakman, SC MP, with the guest speaker being the Hon Wayne Martin AC, Chief Justice of Western Australia.

Brochures with program available:



Following the conference, at 5.15 pm adjacent to the conference theatre, there was a book launch by the Hon Justice Stephen Gageler AC of Australian Constitutional Values (Hart Publishing, 2018) edited by Rosalind Dixon.

Flyer available here.


Session One - The Courts on Constitutional Law: The 2017 Term
Mr Justin Gleeson
The Hon Justice Pamela Tate

Session Two - Recent Cases (part one)
Professor Graeme Orr
Associate Professor Elisa Arcioni
Mr Michael Wait

Session Three - Recent Casses (part two)
Ms Kathleen Foley
Mr Stephen McDonald
Dr Sangeetha Pillai

Session Four - Contemporary Rights Issues Across the Federation
Professor Louise Chappell
Dr Lisa Burton Crawford
Professor Carolyn Evans


Mr Justin Gleeson, NSW Bar
The High Court on Constitutional Law: the 2017 Term
Paper as posted to the AUSPUBLAW blog

The Hon Justice Pamela Tate, Court of Appeal, Supreme Court of Victoria
The Federal and State Courts on Constitutional Law: The 2017 Term

The Hon Wayne Martin AC, Chief Justice of Western Australia
‘The Delicate Balance between Stability and Change’
Dinner Speech

Professor Louise Chappell, UNSW
Democracy and Human Rights: A Tripartite Conceptual Framework (article by van Hattam and Chappell upon which presentation was based)

Professor Andrew Lynch, UNSW
The High Court on Constitutional Law: The 2017 Statistics
Summary Analysis and Tables

Stephen McDonald, SA Bar
Diversity Jurisdiction and State Tribunals: Burns v Corbett
Powerpoint slides

Professor Graeme Orr, University of Queensland
Parliamentary Disqualification and Financial Conflicts: Re Day (No 2) and Alley v Gillespie
Powerpoint slides

Dr Sangeetha Pillai, UNSW
Visa Cancellation and Chapter III: Graham v Minister for Immigration; Falzon v Minister for Immigration
Powerpoint slides

Associate Professor Elisa Arcioni
Parliamentary Disqualification for Foreign Citizenship: Re Canavan and the Citizenship Seven
Powerpoint slides

Michael Wait SC, Crown Solicitor for South Australia
The Appropriation Power and the Same Sex Marriage Postal Survey: Wilkie v Commonwealth
Powerpoint slides