Academic heavyweights taking Government and International Relations from strength to strength

2 February 2011

The Department of Government and International Relations will enjoy an invigorating change with the arrival of three distinguished new Professors in 2011.

Professor Pippa Norris, Professor David Schlosberg and Professor Colin Wight will add an impressive international presence to the Department when they take up their positions from this year.

Dean of Arts and Social Sciences, Professor Duncan Ivison, believes that the appointment of these prominent academics will help towards achieving the faculty's goal of creating "the best politics group in Australia and one of the leading group of political scientists in the world."

"They are all principal scholars in their particular fields - including in comparative politics, democratic governance, international relations and environmental politics - with a remarkable array of teaching interests as well as highly distinguished research profiles," Professor Ivison said.

"Combined with other new colleagues joining us this year and next, and with an already strong group of political scientists in place, we are well on our way to achieving our aims."

Professor Pippa Norris has an extensive background in Comparative Politics, arriving at the University of Sydney from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

She has previously held the position of Director of the Democratic Governance Group at the United Nations Development Programme in New York, and has worked in consulting roles for many international bodies, including the United Nations, UNESCO, the Council of Europe, the World Bank and NDI.

Professor Norris has also held academic appointments at Columbia University, the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Oslo, the University of East Anglia, The University of Cape Town, Otago University, the University of Edinburgh and the Australian National University.

Professor David Schlosberg joins the Department of Government and International Relations from his previous post as Professor in the Department of Politics and International Affairs at Northern Arizona University.

With research interests in environmental politics and political theory, Professor Schlosberg is currently co-editing the Oxford Handbook of Climate Change and Society, to be published this year.

He has previously held Visiting positions as Lecturer in Political Theory at the London School of Economics, as Fulbright Senior Scholar and Fellow in Social and Political Theory at the Australian National University, and as Barron Visiting Professor in Environment and Humanities in the Princeton Environmental Institute at Princeton University.

Professor Colin Wight will visit the Department from the University of Exeter, bringing with him the European Journal of International Relations (EJIR), of which he is editor-in-chief.

First published in 1995, the EJIR is a major peer-reviewed journal in its field with an impact factor of 1.432 and a ranking of 11/59 for International Relations. Published by Sage, EJIR is a journal of the Standing Group on International Relations of the European Consortium for Political Research.

Professor Wight has previously worked as a professional musician and journalist before he was awarded his PhD from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth in 1997.

He was a member of staff at Aberystwyth from 1998 to 2003 and was appointed as Professor of International Relations at the Department of Politics, University of Exeter, in 2008.

Finally the department also welcomes back Professor of Public Policy Allan McConnell, whose research expertise in the politics of crisis and disaster management will provide a much-needed perspective given recent events.

Professor McConnell has written/edited six books and regularly publishes on a variety of policy-related theories and issues. In 2010, he published a ground-breaking book entitled Understanding Policy Success: Rethinking Public Policy.

The new Professorial positions are a decisive step towards attaining a progressive vision for the newly named Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.

Contact: Callie Henderson

Phone: 9351 2208