Distinguished Speakers Program: Prof Andrew Harding, National University of Singapore

18 June 2014

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Constitutional reform in emerging countries

In 1997 Thailand adopted a state-of-the-art 'people's constitution' designed to bring an end to six decades of constitutional uncertainty. That reform was brought to an abrupt end by the coup of 2006, since when political instability has stalled the reform process, political polarisation between the 'red' and 'yellow' factions has deepened, and a crisis of legitimacy has remained unresolved. From October 2013 several months of protests sought to overthrow the 'red' government of Yingluck Shinawatra.

The Constitutional Court invalidated the general election of February 2014, and in May 2014 it dismissed the Prime Minister from office. Despite an evolving constitutional framework for determining political issues, Thailand's political instability continues unabated.

Professor Harding is co-author of "The Constitutional System of Thailand: A Contextual Analysis", reflects on current developments and the prospects for stable governance and constitutional reform."

About the speaker

Professor Andrew Harding is a leading scholar in the fields of Asian legal studies and comparative constitutional law. He commenced his academic career at NUS before moving to SOAS, University of London, where he became Head of the Law School and Director of the Centre for South East Asian Studies. He joined NUS, as Director of the Centre for Asian Legal Studies and Director of the Asian Law Institute, from the University of Victoria, BC Canada, where he was Professor of Asia-Pacific Legal Relations and Director of the Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives. Professor Harding has worked extensively on constitutional law in Malaysia and Thailand, and has made extensive contributions to scholarship in comparative law, and law and development, having published nine books as author or editor. He is co-founding-editor of Hart Publishing's book series 'Constitutional Systems of the World', a major resource for constitutional law in context, and has authored the books on Malaysia and Thailand in that series (2011, 2012).

Lawyers/barristers: attendance at this lecture is equal to 1 MCLE/CPD unit.

Time: 6-7pm followed by a cocktail reception (registration from 5.30pm)

Location: Common Room, level 4, New Law School Building (F10), Eastern Ave University of Sydney

Cost: Full Fee $15; SLS Alumni $10; Student $10

Contact: Professional Learning & Community Engagement Team

Phone: 0293510248

Email: 02181367150e10382319022552555951136335030c4f082f