This Executive Education course has been postponed, due to circumstances beyond our control, until April 2024.

This tailored Executive Education course is recommended for anyone interested in increasing their knowledge and skills in Indigenous Diplomacy.

It is particularly recommended for those working in the Australian Government to deliver its Indigenous Diplomacy program, and will be useful to anyone working in or with First Nations communities.

The weaving of the mat is symbolic and identifies …. the preparation of a coming together of different people and communities. You have to weave the mat before you can sit on it. You have to make the relationships.
- Uncle Gabriel Bani, Wagadagam Elder

Course details

Dates: Mon 13 - Fri 17 November 2023.
Cost:  $3,650 per participant.
Deadline: Registrations close Tues 31 October 2023. Early bird registrations close Wed 11 October 2023.

This 5-day intensive course provides participants with opportunities to listen and learn from Indigenous Elders and authorities from a range of nations – Kaurareg (Thursday Island), Mawng (South Goulburn Island, NT), Ngambri (Canberra), Wiradyuri (Central New South Wales) and Yolngu (East Arnhem Land).

The participatory and immersive workshop is a unique opportunity to learn about the traditions and ongoing life of Indigenous sovereignties in Australia and their distinct ways of making diplomacy. The workshop includes extended sessions on diplomacy from each group of Elders, a session on Indigenous Youth Perspectives on Diplomacy, and seminars delivered by academics and experts on:

  • Indigenous Rights at the UN
  • Indigenous Trade & Investment
  • Indigenous Development and the Sustainable Development Goals.

The program also features a range of out-of-the-classroom learning activities: a public roundtable debate on The Voice; a trip to sites of significance to local Indigenous communities; a film screening; and social events.

See draft program pdf, in the attachments in the right column, and also at the bottom of this page.

Participants will be supported in translating their knowledge back to the workplace and sharing it with others. They will be asked to present short reflection notes at the end of the workshop.

Dhuwal workshop bukmakku limurruŋ Yolŋuw ga Balandaw. Ga limurr dhu marŋgithirr rrambaŋi dhiyakiyi yäkuw workshop-ku yurru Diplomacy-w. Yolŋu walal ga marrtji beŋur Thursday Island-ŋur, Canberra-ŋur, South Goulburn Island-ŋur ga beŋur East Arnhem Land-ŋur. Napurr dhu nhumalaŋgal melkum Yolŋuw dhukarr ga limurr dhu maḻŋ’maram rrambaŋin dhukarrnydja ga melgurrupan märrma’lil world-lil ga rrambaŋi djäma guŋga’yunamirr bawala’mirriŋur.

This workshop is for everyone. All of us learn together about Indigenous diplomacy in both traditional and contemporary platforms. The traditional owners of Thursday Island, Canberra, South Goulburn Island, and
East Arnhem Land will come to deliver the workshop. We will show you the ways in which two different worlds - Indigenous and non-Indigenous - work and help each other in many places.
- Aunty Joy Bulkanhawuy, Yolŋu Elder


Hero image: Yannima Pikarli Tommy Watson, Untitled, 2016. acrylic on Belgian linen, 151 x 244 cm. ANU Art Collection. Donated through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program by Craig Edwards in memory of Edmund Charles Edwards and Alan Edmund Edwards, teachers, 2018. Photo by Rob Little. Courtesy the artist and Yanda Art, Alice Springs.

Penny Wong with the 2022 cohort of Indigenous Diplomacy students.
Penny Wong with the 2022 cohort of Indigenous Diplomacy students.
Indigenous Diplomacy course 2022 - Welcome to Country
Indigenous Diplomacy course 2022 - Welcome to Country

DRAFT Program

Day 1 - Monday 13 November

Read more

8.30am - Gathering

9.00am - Welcome to Country

9.45am - Introduction to workshop

10.45am - Session 1 - Knowing each other well

12.00pm - Lunch

1.00pm - Session 2 - Indigenous Diplomacy, Ngambri Team

2.30pm - Afternoon tea

3.00pm - Session 3 - Indigenous rights at the UN

4.45pm - End of Day 1 teaching

7.00pm - The Voice: What next? (public event)

8.30pm - End of Day 1


Day 2 - Tuesday 14 November

Read more

8.45am - Gathering

9.00am - Session 4 - Indigenous Diplomacy, Yolngu team

10.30am - Morning Tea

11.00am - Session 5 - Indigenous Diplomacy, Yolngu team

12.00pm - Lunch

1.00pm - Session 6 - Indigenous Diplomacy, Mawng team

2.30pm - Afternoon tea

3.00pm - Session 7 - Indigenous trade & investment

4.00pm - Session 8 - Young Australians in International Affairs

5.30pm - End of Day 2

Day 3 - Wed 15 November

Read more

8.45am - Gathering

9.00am - Session 9 - Indigenous Diplomacy, Kaurareg team

12.00pm - Lunch

12.30pm - Bus tour - visit to local Indigenous sites

5.00pm - Return to Canberra

7.00pm - Social event (tbc)

10.00pm - End of Day 3

Day 4 - Thursday 16 November

Read more

8.45am - Gathering

9.00am - Session 10 - Indigenous Women's Diplomacy

10.30am - Morning Tea

10.45am - Session 11 - Indigenous Diplomacy, Wiradyuri team

12.15 - Lunch

1.00pm - Session 12 - Indigenous Intellectual Property

2.00pm - Session 13 - Diplomacy ceremony and wrap up with elders (yarning circle)

3.00pm - Afternoon tea

3.30pm - Session 14 - Indigenous Diplomacy, Mawng team - dance

5.15pm - End of Day 4 teaching

6.30pm - Indigenous stargazing tour and talk, including BBQ at Mount Stromlo

9.30pm - End of Day 4

Day 5 - Friday 17 November

Read more

8.45am - Gathering

9.00am - Session 15 - Indigenous Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

10.30am - Morning Tea

11am - Session 16 - Translating knowledge to work

12.30 - Lunch

1.30pm - Session 17 - Presentation, course evaluation and final wrap up

3.00pm - End of the course

Graduate Research and Development Network on Asian Security (GRADNAS) Seminar Series

Historical Asia was an interconnected system of “open” world orders. This is a crucial theoretical takeaway for International Relations (IR) theory from historical Asia. There were multiple, unevenly overlapping orders in historical Asia. This perspective which is rooted in the global historical approach to IR challenges the Eurocentric notion of the ‘containerized’ version of Asian regional worlds and world orders that only came into meaningful contact with each other because of the early modern European expansion. At the same time, this global and historical perspective also challenges all essentialist views of the East Asian past that characterize that part of the world as living in splendid Sinocentric isolation from the rest for thousands of years until China and East Asia were “opened up” by the West. Two crucial periods/processes of Asian history show the deep and transformative impact of the entanglements between South Asia and East Asia for Asian world orders: the Indic-Buddhist impact on China in the first millennium (and into the early centuries of the second millennium), and the role of India in the so-called “opening up” of China by the West in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. These processes provide two crucial insights. First, historical East Asia was not a China-centered system for 2,000 years. Second, and relatedly, pre-European East Asia was not a “closed” system. Asia and its sub-regions defy singular and all-encompassing orders, and Asian history points towards a plurality of open and overlapping orders. Notably, the emerging regional orders in Asia are also pointing towards such a configuration. Asia is not one, but Asia is not disconnected either.

About the speaker
Manjeet S. Pardesi is Associate Professor of International Relations in the Political Science and International Relations Programme, and Asia Research Fellow at the Centre for Strategic Studies at Victoria University of Wellington. His research interests include Historical International Relations, Great Power Politics, Asian security, and the Sino-Indian rivalry. He is the co-author of The Sino-Indian Rivalry: Implications for Global Order (with Sumit Ganguly and William R. Thompson, Cambridge University Press, 2023). He is currently working on a book project titled Worlds in Contrast: Hegemonic and Multiplex Orders in the Mediterranean and the Indian Ocean (with Amitav Acharya, forthcoming with Yale University Press). His articles have appeared in European Journal of International Relations, Security Studies, Survival, Global Studies Quarterly, Asian Security, Australian Journal of International Affairs, International Politics, Commonwealth & Comparative Politics, International Studies Perspectives, Nonproliferation Review, Air & Space Power Journal (of the United States Air Force), The Fletcher Forum of World Affairs, World Policy Journal, India Review, Defense and Security Analysis, and in several edited book volumes. He is the co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of India’s National Security (Oxford, 2018) and India’s Military Modernization: Challenges and Prospects (Oxford, 2014).  He is the Managing Editor of the journal Asian Security (since June 2018).


This event is the first in the GRADNAS Seminar Series of 2024. The series will showcase the emerging scholarship on the historical International Relations of Asia. There has been a “global” and a “historical” turn in International Relations scholarship in recent years. Scholars are increasingly looking at Asian history to enrich International Relations theory. What are the theoretical insights that emerge from studying Asian history? Does Asian history provide us with new concepts and new understandings of order? Does Asian history challenge the received metanarratives of International Relations theory? How were historical Asian polities connected with each other and with the world beyond Asia? Can the International Relations theoretical findings from Asian history shed light on other parts of the world? What, if anything, do these findings tell us about the emerging world order? Join us as we celebrate and showcase the excellent research by GRADNAS members and friends on the Historical International Relations of Asia. Visit our website here.


For more information, contact the GRADNAS Coordinator, Tommy Chai at

We cordially invite you to an evening celebrating the highly anticipated launches of three extraordinary publications.

1. Islands of Hope: Indigenous Resource Management in a Changing Pacific 

Edited by: Paul D’Arcy, Daya Dakasi Da-Wei Kuan
Publisher: ANU Press

The first book to be launched, Islands of Hope, is a distinguished collection of essays that illuminates the indomitable resilience and strength exhibited by Pacific Island communities in the face of numerous challenges. Featuring the work of esteemed contributors from across the region, including many DPA staff and students, this volume offers a poignant glimpse into the lives and cultures of Pacific island nations. Join us as we acknowledge the authors’ work and celebrate their contributions to this publication.

2. Federated States of Micronesia's Engagement with the Outside World

Authored by: Gonzaga Puas
Publisher: ANU Press

Federated States of Micronesia's Engagement with the Outside World delves into the intricate history and relationships that have shaped the nation's engagement on a global stage. This book provides profound insights into the multifaceted interactions that have moulded the Federated States of Micronesia's position in the world.

3. The Cambridge History of the Pacific Ocean Vol 1&2

General Editor: Paul D’Arcy
Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Cambridge History of the Pacific Ocean comprises a comprehensive chronicle of the Pacific's illustrious past, present, and future. This magnum opus stands as a testament to the tireless efforts of its authors, who have meticulously crafted a comprehensive account of the region's history. The essays by various distinguished authors emphasise the impact of the deep history of interactions on and across the Pacific to the present day how the postcolonial period shaped the modern Pacific and its historians.

Please join us as we celebrate the launch of these three exceptional publications that traverse the history and future of the Pacific. This celebration will take place in the Coombs Tea Room HC Coombs Building, Australian National University on Tuesday 25 July from 5-7pm.

Light refreshments will be served.

The fear of the malingering soldier or veteran has existed in Australia since its first nationwide military venture in South Africa. The establishment of the Repatriation Department in 1917 saw the medical, military and political fields work collectively, to some extent, to support hundreds of thousands of men who returned from their military service wounded or ill.

Over the next decades, the medical profession occasionally criticised the Repatriation Department’s alleged laxness towards soldier recipients of military pensions, particularly those with less visible war-related psychiatric conditions. In 1963 this reached a crescendo when a group of Australian doctors drew battle lines in the correspondence pages of the Medical Journal of Australia, accusing the Repatriation Department of directing a ‘national scandal’, and provoking responses by both the Minister for Repatriation and the Chairman of the War Pensions Assessment Appeal Tribunal.

Although this controversy and its aftermath do allow for closer investigation of the inner workings of the Repatriation Department, the words of the doctors themselves about ‘phony cronies’, ‘deadbeats’ and ‘drongoes’ also reveal how the medical fear of the malingering soldier, and particularly the traumatised soldier-malingerer, lingered into the early 1960s and beyond. This paper will analyse the medical conceptualisation of the traumatised soldier in the 1960s in relation to historical conceptions of malingering, the increasingly tenuous position of psychiatry, as well as the socio-medical ‘sick role’, and will explore possible links between the current soldier and veteran suicide crisis in Australia.

Effie Karageorgos is a Lecturer in History at the University of Newcastle and Deputy Convenor of the UON Future of Madness Network. Her research focuses on histories of conflict, gender and psychiatry. Her monograph Australian Soldiers in South Africa and Vietnam: Words from the Battlefield was published in 2016.

The experience of displacement has shaped the politics of many Muslim movements across Southeast Asia. This panel previews a special issue of Itinerario on coerced mobility, and the diverse responses of groups of Muslims in Siam’s incorporation of Patani, Dutch efforts to colonise Aceh, and anti-colonial movements like the Darul Islam in Java and the Communist Party’s Tenth Regiment in Malaya.

Dr Amrita Malhi (ANU Coral Bell School) and Dr Joshua Gedacht (Rowan University) are co-editors of Itinerario’s forthcoming next issue: Coercing Mobility: Territory & Displacement in the Politics of Southeast Asian Muslim Movements. They are joined by two other contributors, Dr Francis R. Bradley (Pratt Institute) and Dr David Kloos (KITLV), and hosted by Professor Robert Cribb (ANU Coral Bell School).

Over the past 30 years, Indonesia has witnessed the growing public prominence of a number of transnational Islamic revivalist movements. These have had a considerable impact on political culture, as the popularity of these movements has gone hand-in-hand with increasingly sectarian views across segments of Indonesian society.

Yet how do such movements successfully transmit their ideas at the grassroots level and present them in ways that influence national political opinion? Chris aims to address this question by focusing on Indonesia’s largest Salafi-influenced organisation, Wahdah Islamiyah, and their activism in the city of Makassar, South Sulawesi.

This talk will illuminate how Wahdah Islamiyah have grown their local network of mosques and schools, and the subtle practices they deploy to frame their Islamic message in ways that both relate to the anxieties of their audience, but also promote a Muslim majoritarian vision of society. More broadly, the talk will conclude by assessing the extent to which such activism can form the basis for broader socio-political mobilisation, and what it may tell us about the health of democratic debate and Islamic social movements in 21st century Indonesia.

Chris Chaplin is an Assistant Professorial Research Fellow at the Religion and Global Society Research Unit at the London School of Economics and a Visiting Fellow at the Department of Political and Social Change, ANU Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs. His research straddles between the fields of anthropology, sociology, and politics, and is particularly focused on exploring the convergence between global Islamic doctrines and local understandings of piety and faith, and how these come to inform civic values, concepts of religious and political belonging, and social activism within Southeast Asia. He received his PhD from the University of Cambridge and has recently published the book Salafism and the State: Islamic Activism and National Identity in Contemporary Indonesia with NIAS Press.

The modern legal system in Thailand was established in the early twentieth century not as much to save the country from colonialism as to secure the absolutist power of Bangkok’s rulers. It was not the Rule of Law, but a legal system intended to privilege the state, especially for the sake of its security. As the semi-absolute monarchy has been ascending in Thailand today, Thai jurisprudence has shown its true colors.

Thongchai Winichakul is Emeritus Professor of History at University of Wisconsin-Madison and Research Fellow Emeritus at Institute of Developing Economies (IDE-JETRO), Japan. He is the author of Siam Mapped (1994) and Moments of Silence: The Unforgetting of the October 6, 1976, Massacre in Bangkok (2020), and has published eight books in Thai. He received the John Simon Guggenheim Award in 1994, was inducted to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2003. He was also President of the Association for Asian Studies in 2013/14. His research interests are in the intellectual foundations of modern Siam under colonial conditions. He is also a critic of Thai political and social issues.

Robert Cribb is currently undertaking the writing of a chapter that delves into the historiography of modern Southeast Asia for the upcoming edition of the Cambridge History of Southeast Asia, scheduled for publication in 2024. The field of modern Southeast Asian history, encompassing the era from around 1800 onwards, possesses distinctive characteristics within the broader discipline of history. Notably, it is characterized by a notable dominance of scholars from outside the region, its roots in interdisciplinary area studies, and a lack of a centralized geographical focal point.

In the process of elucidating this field, Cribb has made a deliberate choice to steer away from emphasizing prominent figures and celebrated works. Instead, the focus is directed towards the identification of four prevailing metanarratives that form the basis of most historical writings concerning the period since 1800: Modernist, autonomist, internationalist, and discursive. The chapter concludes by venturing into speculative territory, deviating from the conventional historical approach, as Cribb explores potential future developments in the field with an open and non-traditional perspective.

Robert Cribb is Professor of Asian History in the Department of Political and Social Change. He is a historian of Indonesia with broader interests in Southeast Asia and in Asia as a whole. His interests include political and environmental history, the history of violence and historical geography.