Latest AIIA NSW News
We have new political leaders on both sides of politics – many of them with little or no experience of international affairs. At the weekend, Tony Abbott and Julie Bishop were participating in their first significant set piece occasion – the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Sri Lanka. Bill Shorten and Tanya Plibersek are new to their jobs.
This unusual situation highlights the importance and influence of the public servant that heads the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade – Peter Varghese, one of Australia’s most experienced diplomats. He has been director-general of the Office of National Assessments, high commissioner in India and Malaysia, international adviser in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, and many other postings.
More than most, he understands that Australia’s foreign policy faces a period of uncertainty in a changing world, and has already briefed our political leaders.
Next Monday he will be briefing the AIIA when he delivers the annual Charteris Oration at the Union, Universities and Schools Club in Sydney. If you want to hear first-hand the country’s leading foreign affairs authority on the challenges facing Australian foreign policy, then I hope you will accept this invitation to come to one of Sydney’s most important public policy events this year. Details are below.
The rising power of China, the importance of East Asia and the Indo-Pacific in world affairs, and problems in Europe are part of this changing world, as well as rapid technological development. Another phenomenon is people power, which first made a big impact in changing the course of the American-Vietnam War, and which has proliferated in recent years through the rapid growth of social networks.
As a timely prelude to the Charteris Oration by Peter Varghese, this Tuesday 19 November Professor John Keane examines the spread of influence of people power in recent times. Professor Keane is director of the Institute for Democracy at the University of Sydney, and the author of many books on the subject. This meeting will be at 6pm at the Glover Cottages; again, details are below.
I hope you will join us at both meetings, as our program for 2013 draws to a close.
President, AIIA NSW
Charteris Dinner 2013
Venue: The Union Club, Corner of Bent & Phillip Street, Sydney CBD
Date: Monday, 25th November 2013
Time: 6.30 pm for 7pm – 10.00 pm
Dress: Smart casual
Tickets: $130.00 for AIIA NSW members and their guests; $150.00 for non-members
(Tables of eight, organised by a member = $1,000.00). Tickets include the cost of dinner and drinks.
For payment details, go to: http://www.aiia.asn.au/nsw-events/event/847-2013-charteris-dinner-and-oration or contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
People Power in Global Politics with speaker Prof John Keane on Tuesday, November 19th 2013 at 6 pm, Glover Cottages
For registration, go to: http://www.aiia.asn.au/nsw-events/event/853-people-power-in-global-politics or contact: email@example.com
A 20-strong delegation from the Chinese province of Sichuan visited the Glover Cottages last week, and said they wanted to form a close relations with New South Wales in general, and AIIA NSW in particular.
Headed by Mr Chen Zongde and Ms Fang Fang, both directors of the Foreign Affairs office of Sichuan province, they were visiting Sydney and Canberra as part of a study tour, aimed at a better understanding of Australia’s relations with China, particularly in the areas of trade, investment and tourism.
They also sought to understand the role of the AIIA in educating the community on international affairs.
The meeting was hosted by AIIA NSW president Colin Chapman, supported by two board members, Professor Jocelyn Chey, and Ms Phoebe Alexander, who are organising a three-week AIIA NSW study tour to China in November.
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