Current Visiting Fellows
Peter is one of the Asia-Pacific’s most respected and experienced media professionals, having been the editor or editor-in-chief of four metropolitan mastheads, including The Sydney Morning Herald, The Canberra Times and The Sunday Age. He is also the former publisher of the Herald, the Sydney flagship of the Fairfax Media group. He is now engaged in several digital start-ups, consulting to established media companies and serving on two not-for-profit boards – Choice, the consumers’ watchdog, and The Australian Science Media Centre. The Adelaide-based centre is dedicated to improving the knowledge base of the working media about science.
His appointment as visiting Professor of Politics and Media at the University of Sydney will see him build on his work on audience engagement and public accountability started in 2011 as the First Decade Fellow at Meco. The fellowship culminated in a public keynote speech at the university in November 2011.
Peter’s 28-year career in journalism has seen him develop skills and experience across a range of subject areas and professional disciplines. Aside from his time in the editor’s chair, he has reported on politics, religion, food security, science, the environment, international affairs, national affairs and agriculture and been a deputy editor, a news editor, a features editor, a foreign correspondent and a hopeless gossip columnist. Under his leadership the SMH was named the best newspaper in the Asia-Pacific region in consecutive years (2009, 2010) by the Pacific Area Newspaper Publishers Association and enhanced its reputation for investigative and advocacy journalism. Peter is deeply committed to exploring the potential of digital platforms to monitor and develop democracy and related institutions – and will use his time at IDHR to examine, critique and develop various methodologies to that end. This will serve as an academic counterpoint to a political fact-checking project Peter plans to introduce to Australia in time for the next federal election.
He will also use his time with IDHR to assist other fellows in the field of media and public accountability in the Asia-Pacific region.
Peter is a part-time theatrical producer whose projects this year include The Hansard Monologues, a new work that will examine the current Australian federal parliament, the first led by a woman. It is expected to open at Sydney’s Seymour Centre mid-year and tour to Wollongong and Western Sydney. He is a performed playwright and published author (The Vanishing Continent, with Bob Beale, 1990).
- Truthers of the world unite: your time has come | The SPECTATOR AUSTRALIA | 6 April 2013
- Peter Fray joins Sydney University | The Australian | 28 February 2013
- Does Truth Really Matter in Australian Politics? | 9 April 2013
- Q&A with Peter Fray | Encore, March 2013
- Ten questions for Peter Fray | The Australian | December 03, 2012
- The Joys of Facts | Peter Fray interviews Bill Adair, the founder and editor PolitiFact.com
- Peter Fray: from editor-in-chief to adjunct professor | 1 March 2013
Dr Robert Lamb
Robert Lamb is Senior Lecturer in Political Philosophy at the University of Exeter in the UK. His main research and teaching interests are in the history of modern liberal thought, its relationship to contemporary political philosophy and the methodological questions involved in interpreting past ideas.
While at IDHR, he will be working for the most part on a monograph on the political thought of eighteenth-century radical liberal thinker Thomas Paine. The project offers a reconstruction of Paine's political theory as a coherent account of liberal rights, focusing on his understanding of concepts such as equality, political obligation, property, democracy, religion and international relations as expressed in his mature writings. In addition to offering (hopefully) novel interpretations of Paine's political theory, the study also aims to demonstrate his historical significance and distinctness within modern liberalism and, more broadly, to show how entering into historical conversations with past authors at their most coherent might provide illumination for contemporary philosophical debates.
Robert is originally from the west of Scotland, is a graduate from the Universities of Strathclyde, York and Exeter and has previously held visiting positions at UC Berkeley and the University of St Andrews. His work has been published in various journals, including The Review of Politics, Journal of the History of Ideas, History of Political Thought, European Journal of Political Theory and History of the Human Sciences.
Professor Jan Zielonka
Jan Zielonka is a Professor of European Politics at the University of Oxford and a Ralf Dahrendorf Fellow at St Antony’s College. His previous appointments included posts at the University of Warsaw, Leiden and the European University Institute in Florence. Zielonka teaches European Politics and Society in Oxford and directs a large international project funded by the European Research Council on the Media and Democracy in Central and Eastern Europe. He has produced seventeen books, including five single author monographs, and more than a hundred articles and chapters in the field of Comparative Politics, International Relations and Political Theory. His latest book is entitled Europe as Empire. The Nature of the Enlarged European Union, (Oxford University Press, 2006).
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Nick currently works as a strategic policy consultant to a mix of business and NGO clients in Australia and overseas. Over the past fifteen years, Nick has worked at the centre of government on sustainability, climate change and broader policy and political strategy in Australia and the UK. In these roles he has developed new and innovative policy approaches in a number of areas from the funding of cutting-edge medical research, protecting public lands bordering Sydney Harbour to helping establish the seminal Stern Review into the Economics of Climate Change.
As a Founding Director of Kinesis, a bespoke climate change advisory and systems development firm, Nick was the Strategic Director of the Copenhagen Climate Council: an affiliation of climate scientists, business CEOs and policy practitioners brought together to make the case for a more adequate global climate treaty in 2009.
From March 2004 to January 2006, Nick worked at 10 Downing Street as an advisor to Prime Minister Tony Blair. In this role he oversaw all domestic and international climate policy and was part of a small team advising the British Prime Minister on climate change prior to the G8 Summit at Gleneagles in July 2005. While at Downing Street he was involved in early discussions in 2005 about the potential of establishing a series of leaders debates in the UK.
From 1995 to 2004 Nick was advisor to Bob Carr, Premier of NSW (now Australian Foreign Minister), working primarily on policy on the environment, urban development and medical research.
As a Visiting Research Fellow at IDHR Nick's work concentrate on how to achieve more effective public engagement and debate prior to Australian elections through more effective Prime Ministerial televisions debates supported and enhanced by new media. For more information click here