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Rhonda Evans Case, Director HRC 3.362, Mailcode F1900, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-9607
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NEWSLETTER NO. 24         FALL 2001
THE EDWARD A. CLARK CENTER FOR AUSTRALIAN
& NEW ZEALAND STUDIES
THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN

 

Clark Center Adds New Zealand Studies
 
In this, its 13th year, the Center is expanding to incorporate New Zealand Studies.  Our official name is now The Edward A. Clark Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies.

The New Zealand Ambassador to the U. S. (and former NZ prime minister), James Bolger, visited the Center in mid-November to inaugurate this change.  Ambassador Bolger gave a heavily-attended address on New Zealand political and economic issues, and he and his wife Joan were the guests of honor at a diner hosted by UT Senior Vide President Bill Livingston, a staunch supporter of the Clark Center since its inception.

Accompanying Ambassador Bolger were Professors Elizabeth McCleay and Maurice Goldsmith, both from Victoria Wellington University.  Prof. McLeay, who is currently the NZ Fulbright Fellow at Georgetown University, gave a talk to UT's Dept. of Government on consequences of the much-discussed changes in New Zealand's electoral system.  She also met with the department's Gender Reading Group to discuss the marked political advances that women have achieved in New Zealand.

To mark its addition of New Zealand Studies, our guests presented the Center with a handsome Maori war club and a set of embossed champagne glasses.  The club now hangs in the Center office next to the striking Aboriginal bark painting that Prime Minister Bob Hawke brought to Austin at the Center's founding in 1988, and which has since served as our logo.

Also marking the Center's New Zealand expansion has been this fall's announcement by the Fulbright Foundation in Wellington, headed by Jenny Gill, of a multi-year program under which a senior New Zealand scholar will each fall or spring be in residence at UT-Austin to teach and conduct research about New Zealand and NZ-U.S. topics.  The scholar chosen to inaugurate this program is Dr. Robert Ayson, a political scientist and international relations specialist at Massey University.  Dr. Ayson will be in Austin for the fall sememster, 2002.

Finally, the Center and UT-Austin have this fall concluded agreements with Otago and Victoria Wellington universities for reciprocal student exchange programs, both of which will start immediately.


Center Fetes New U.S. Ambassador to Australia
President Bush appointed a distinguished UT-Austin alumnus, Tom Schieffer, as U.S. Ambassador to Australia last July.  A month later the University and Center welcomed Ambassador Schieffer back to campus for a dinner honoring him and for a briefing on Australian affairs organized by the Center.

Ambassador Schieffer graduated in 1970 with a BA (High Honors) in Government.  He went on to a MA in International Relations and, after serving three terms in the Texas Legislature as its youngest member, he returned to the UT Law School during the late 1970s to earn an LLB.  A native of Fort Worth, Schieffer later became closely associated with President Bush in the Texas Rangers baseball franchise.

Schieffer is the second UT alumnus to serve as U.S. ambassador to Australia, his predecessor being the illustrious Edward A. Clark, who graduated in 1928 and represented the Johnson Administration in Canberra during the Vietnam War.  Like Clark, Ambassador Schieffer must deal with a tumultuous international situation in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist actions and ensuing military actions by both countries in Afghanistan.

The Center's briefing for Ambassador Schieffer, held before 9/11, ranged widely over Australia's internal and external political, economic, and trade circumstances.  A half dozen faculty and two Ph.D. students, all affiliated with the Center, took turns giving the Ambassador their views of these predicaments and prospects.



Message from the Director
We're late getting this fall's Yacker out.  We delayed production until after Ambassador's Bolger's visit in mid-November to mark the Center's addition of New Zealand Studies, and then Thanksgiving sort of sneaked up on us.  As I write, it's time to send everyone Season's Greetings!

Early last summer I spent two informative weeks in Australia and New Zealand.  In Canberra I participated in a conference that took stock of prospects for a Free Trade Agreement with the U.S.  That was followed a week later by a conference, organized by the long-time Australian Studies stalwarts, Henry Albinski and Tawdon Dalrymple, both now at Sydney University where their conference was held, that assessed the Australia-U.S. Alliance at its 50th anniversary.

In between those conferences, I was in Wellington at the invitation of Jenny Gill, director of the NZ Fulbright Foundation, to discuss the future of New Zealand Studies in North america.  Jenny assembeled an impressive array of senior NZ academics and officials for this purpose.  My Wellington visit also afforded opportunities to make plans for the Clark Center's addition of New Zealand Studies and to renew acquaintances with several trade policy hands, such as Sir Frank Holmes at the Institute for Policy Studies.

On getting back to Austin, I took up the cudgels as chair of UT's large Government Dept. -- 1500 undergradaduate majors, more than 100 Ph.D. students, and a teaching staff of some hundred faculty, lecturers, and teaching assistants.  Together with contining to direct the Clark Center (greatly assisted by Fran Cushing), the chair job has kept me going on a 15/7 basis all fall.

The Clark Center's affiliated faculty and graduate students continue to increase in numbers, with much coming and going between Austin and various Down Under locations.  This past September, for example, we welcomed two new faculty affiliates:  Profs. Laurence Chalip and Chris Green.  They have moved from Griffith University to join UT's Dept. of Kinesiology where they are the principal scholars of Sport Management.  Prof. Jamie Galbraith, in the LBJ School of Public Affairs, spent a summer month lecturing in Australia and returned with a heightened interest in the country's economic prospects.  As recounted elsewhere in this Yacker, Prof. Christine Williams, from UT's Sociology Dept., spent several weeks in New Zealand.  Two Government Ph.D. students, Alison Martens and Scott Garrison, returned from summer research stints in Canberra.  Two other Ph.D. students, Greg Brown and George Purcell, went back to Australia early tis fall to conduct fieldwork for their respective dissertations.  Greg's on the Croat and Serb diasporas, and George's on Australia's changing international trade and investment situations.  Meanwhile, two more Ph.D. students, Rhonda Evans Case and Jason Pierce, are in the write-up stage of their dissertatons, Rhonda's on the interchange between Human Rights norms and pressures and Australian politics, and Jason's on the sea change in the High Court under Justice Brennan from the late 1980s onwards.

I'm pleased to say that most of these UT scholars and students will attend the upcoming ASANA conference at U.B.C. in Vancouver, along with Fran Cushing, Ross Terrill, and yours truly.  Hoyt Edge, ASANA's current president, and Wes Pue, our main U.B.C. host, have put together an intensive and highly varied program, and Francine McKenzie (Univ. of Toronto) has managed to persuade Canada's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade to support the conference with a special grant of funds.  Great work, Francine!  All of us at the Clark Center much look forward to the Vancouver gathering at the end of February.

Finally, let me just mention that I'm honored to have been appointed Adjunct Professor of Political Science in the ANU's Research School of Social Sciences for the next four years.  In this capacity, I expect to spend at least six weeks in residence at the ANU each year, starting with the week of 11-15 March 2002.

John Higley                                                      




UT Sociologist Studies NZ Sexual Harrassment Policy
New Zealand's policy against sexual harassment has been lauded as the most progressive in the world.  UT Professor of Sociology Christine Williams was in Wellington and Auckland this fall to interview a range of lawyers, academics, and government officials about the policy's works, which she contrast with the U.S. approaches to sexual harassment.

In New Zealand sexual harassment is seen primarily as a violation of human rights, whereas in the U.S. it is treated mainly as an aspect of employment discrimination.  "In New Zealand," Williams reports, "the law affirms that every person deserves dignity and respect, and this human right applies in all public places.  Sexual harassment is a violation of this right.  Anyone who feels that they have been sexually harassed can approach the Human Rights Commission with a demand for redress, and the Commission will undertake an investigation and, if appropriate, mediation.  In the U.S., by contrast, for a legal finding of sexual harassment, an individual first has to prove that he or she was discriminated against on the basis of gender, and this is provable only in the context of education or employment."  During a forthcoming second trip to New Zealand, Dr. Williams, who has a leading reputation in the sociology of gender, intends to study how New Zealanders perceive the country's sexual harassment policy. 


Student Exchange Programs Flourish
The numbers of students moving between UT and ten Australian and New Zealand universities are now quite sizable.  During the 2000-01 academic year, for example, 42 UT students were in Australia for studies and four more were in New Zealand.  Meanwhile, 21 Australian students were at UT.  During the academic year, 44 UT students are in Australia and another is in New Zealand, and 19 Australians and New Zealand students at UT.  With the start of the offficial exchange programs between UT and Otago and Victoria Wellington universities this spring, the student traffic between Austin and New Zealand is expected to increase significantly.


ANU Parliamentary Internship Program
With the benefit of a generous grant from Dr. Pam Ryan and Bill Wood, the Clark Center has sent two Ph.D students from UT's Government Dept. to the ANU's Parliamentary Internship Program during each of the past four years.

This past North American summer, Alison Martens and Scott Garrison both worked long and hard in Parliament.  Alison conducted research on the Parliament's unique pre-legislative scrutiny process, by which all proposed legislation is vetted by a select committee to guard against potential rights violations.  Viewing this as a partial substitute for a Bill of Rights, Alison produced a lengthy paper with an appropriately lengthy title: "An Ounce of Prevention Worth a Pound of Cure?  Relying on Responsible Government and Pre-Legislative Scrutiny to Protect the Rights of Australians."

Scott was affiliated with Parliament's Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters.  He concetrated on how recent changes for registering and publicly funding political parties are working.  A specific question he addressed was these changes' effects on minor parties and on "entrepreneurial" political activities at the margins of Australia's electoral politics.

The Center expects to send two Ph.D. students to the Internship Program again this coming summer.


Teacher Workshop on Australia
Using a DETYA grant to ASANA that has been administered by the Clark Center, Texas A&M University's Dept. of Geography will hold a day-long workshop on January 26th, 2002 to introduce Texas social studies high school teachers to Australian topics.  The workshop will take place in the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum Complex.  Drs. Higley and Terrill are scheduled to make presentations to the workshop.  For information, contact Dr. Sarah Witham Bednarz at Texas A&M University: s-bednarz@tamu.edu The workshop website is http://missiongeography.org/

Without Prejudice
A full-length feature film of this title, which depicts the deliberative poll about Aboriginal Reconciliation that the Center helped mount in February 2001 has now been released in Australia.  Directed by professional film-maker, Gillian Guthrie, Without Prejudice records the efforts of Dr. Pam Ryan and her large staff at Issues Deliberation Australia to mobilize a statistically representative sample of the australian electorate, augmented by a special sample of some 60 Aborigines, for two days of intensive, nationally televised, and sometimes fractious deliberatons at Old Parliament House in Canberra on issues swirling around the idea of Reconciliation.  The film is especially interesting for its insights into the attitudes of Aborigines, with roughly half of it being shot in Aboriginal communities located around Australia.  Video copies can be obtained by contacting gillianguthrie@item.com.au


The Australian People
Cambridge University Press has just published The Australian People: An Encyclopedia of the Nation, Its People, and Their Origins.  Edited by James Jupp, Australian National University, and a long-time associate of the Clark Center, the Encyclopedia is an exceptionally handsome and comprehensive reference work that runs to nearly a thousand pages, including 48 pages of color photographs and 44 pages of maps.  Its ISBN is 0521807891 (hardback).  Both Drs. Higley and Terrill help CUP foster this important publication.


A Look at Australia
A book aimed at introducing children to Australia titled A Look at Australia, is being published by Capstone Press (Minneapolis MN) this month.  Frances Cushing, the Center's Executive Assistant, served as a consultant to this project.

Recent Visitors to the Center
Dr. Chris Dixon, Dept. of History, Newcastle University (June)
New Zealand's Ambassador to the U.S., James Bolger (November)
Prof. Elizabeth McLeay, Dept. of Political Science, Victoria Wellington Univ. (November)
Prof. Maurice Goldsmith, Dept. of Philosophy, Victoria Wellington Univ. (November)
Prof. Paige Porter, Executive Dean, Univ. of Western Australia (December)

Recent Publications
Gary P. Freeman and Bob Birrell. "Divergent Paths of Immigration Politics in the United States and Australia." Population and Development Review 27(3): 525-551 (Sept. 2001).

John Higley and Michael Burton.  "The Study of Political Elite Transformations." International Review of Sociology 11(2): 181-99 (July 2001).

Ross Terrill.  "Diversity in Australia." The Medical Journal of Australia (Special Issue on the Centenary of Federation) 174(1) (January 2001).

ASANA 2002
The annual conference will be held at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada, 28 February to 2 March, 2002.  For information regarding registration contact Hoyt Edge at edge@Rollins.edu.

YACKER
Is published in the fall & spring by The Edward A. Clark Center for Australian & New Zealand Studies,
Harry Ransom Center 3.362
The University of Texas, Austin, TX 78713-7219
Telephone: 512/471-9607 Fax : 512/471-8869 email: yacker@www.utexas.edu
Website: www.utexas.edu/depts/cas/
This Newsletter was not printed with state funds.
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