DR Gavan Butler

MAgrSc Melb. PhD Calif.

Dr Gavan Butler




+61 2 9351 5117


Faculty of Arts
H04 - Merewether
The University of Sydney
NSW 2006 Australia

Dr Butler is one of the founders of the innovative program in Political Economy which began within the Discipline in 1975. He has been on the editorial committee of the Journal of Australian Political Economy published within the Department, since its first appearance in 1977 and has contributed to the Encyclopedia of Political Economy published in the UK and the USA in 1999. Dr Butler was re-elected in 1997, 1999 and 2001 by the academic staff of the University as a member of the Senate of the University and previously served for many years as a staff-elected member of the Academic Board.

Dr Butler’s primary research interest has been in the development of the state, economic policy and human resource development in the countries of Southeast Asia. He has had a long association with the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore and with academics and organisations in the region. He was invited to teach in the English-language Bachelor of Economics program at Thammasat University in Thailand in 1999 and has continued to do so until the present time.

Research Interests

  • Theories of Political Economy
  • Economic development
  • Higher education
  • Human resource development
  • State and economy in southeast Asia
  • State formation and industry policy



Journal Article/s

Butler G 2010 ‘The Sydney Insurrection: The Battle for Economics at the University of Sydney’, Challenge, vol. 53:2, pp. 54-75



Butler G, Evan Jones and Frank Stilwell 2009 Political Economy Now! The struggle for alternative economics at the University of Sydney, Sydney, Darlington Press (SUP)

Book Chapter/s

Toner P and G Butler 2009 ‘Cumulative causation and North-east Asian industry policy’ in S Berger (ed) The Foundations of New Equilibrium Economics: The principle of circular and cumulative causation, London and New York, Routledge


Journal Article/s

Butler G 2007 ‘Higher Education; Its Evolution and Present Trend’, Journal of Australian Political Economy, No 60, December


Journal Article/s

Natsuda K and Butler G 2005 'Building Institutional Capacity in Southeast Asia: Regional Governed Interdependence', ASEAN Economic Bulletin, vol.22:3, pp. 331-339.


Journal Article/s

Butler G and Toner PA 2004 'Some reflections on Governing the Market', Issues and Studies, vol.40:1, pp. 81-102.


Journal Article/s

Butler G 2002 'Beyond Eclecticism: A Surplus-Orientated Approach to Political Economy', Journal of Australian Political Economy, vol.50, pp. 89-97.


Journal Article/s

Butler G 2001 'Notes to aid Discussion of the Appropriate mix of Funding of Australia's Public Universities', The Drawing Board, vol.1:3, pp. 87-101.

Conference Proceeding/s

Butler G 2001 'Dynamics of Thai Employment', Workshop on Human Resources Development and Competencies: Educational Issues (in Thai), Thailand,September 2000.



Butler G 2000 'Context of Human Resources Development', Research Institute for Asia and the Pacific.