Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies
Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies

Transnational Connections

Promotion of Australian and New Zealand Studies lies at the heart of the Clark Center’s mission. To that end, the Center plays a prominent role in a vibrant transnational network of scholars and organizations devoted to the study of Australia and New Zealand. It leverages this role to advance its research initiatives, showcase the work of scholars from around the world, and foster interest in Australia and New Zealand among faculty, graduate students, and undergraduates at UT-Austin. 

The Clark Center is working to exploit new opportunities for collaboration as interest in Australia and New Zealand grows across Latin America and Asia. Support from the Australian Embassy, the Australian Consulate-General in Houston, and other prominent government officials is helping the Center achieve these objectives.

Research Partnerships

The Clark Center’s relationships with Australian and New Zealand universities are instrumental to the advancement of its research agenda. In 2020, the Australian Studies Institute will host at the Australian National University (ANU) a special workshop devoted to Dr. Rhonda Evans’ manuscript on the Australian Human Rights Commission. The Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law at the University of New South Wales hosted a workshop in 2018 that focused on a Clark Center dataset of High Court of Australia decisions. And, Postdoctoral Fellow Dr. Andrew Gibbons and Dr. Evans also have ongoing research collaborations and grant proposals with scholars from the University of Melbourne and La Trobe University.

Partnering with colleagues at Monash University, the Clark Center organized two events at the Monash Prato Centre in Italy—a meeting of the International Political Science Association’s Comparative Judicial Studies Research Committee and a workshop on immigration in the US and Australia. Papers presented at the latter event comprise a manuscript, edited by Dr. Rhonda Evans and Dr. Jock Collins (University of Technology Sydney), that is under review with Palgrave Macmillan. Over the years, Dr. Evans has been a Visiting Scholar in the School of Politics and International Relations at the ANU and the Victoria University of Wellington Faculty of Law, and she has delivered numerous talks at universities across Australia and New Zealand.


Through its leadership role in the Australian and New Zealand Studies Association of North America (ANZSANA), the Clark Center works with the Center for Australian, New Zealand, and Pacific Studies at Georgetown University to sustain a regional community of scholars with interests in Australia and New Zealand and provide an outlet for their research. Former Clark Center Director, Dr. John Higley helped establish ANZSANA in the early 1990s. Since then, the Center has hosted four of the Association’s annual meetings at UT-Austin, most recently in 2014 and 2019. These events brought dozens of scholars from around the world to the Forty Acres, provided opportunities for UT-Austin faculty and graduate students to present their research (much of which had been funded by the Clark Center Small Grants Programs), and enabled undergraduate students to participate in an international academic conference. With Clark Center support, ANZSANA is at long last developing meaningful ties with scholars in Mexico.

In 2018, the Association held its first-ever annual meeting in Mexico thanks to the initiative of Miguel Híjar-Chiapa (University of Guadalajara) and the Clark Center. The idea was hatched during Híjar-Chiapa’s time as a Visiting Scholar at the Center and solidified during a subsequent visit by Dr. Evans to Guadalajara. ANZSANA will return to Mexico for its 2020 conference, which will be held at the University of Guadalajara’s campus in the resort town of Puerto Vallarta.

Campus Events

The Clark Center partners with organizations on campus and from around the world to bring scholars to UT-Austin to share their research. It has facilitated visits to UT-Austin by the prestigious Gough Whitlam and Malcolm Fraser Visiting Professor of Australian Studies based at Harvard University,
hosted Fulbright Scholars from Australia, and organized talks by three American scholars that held the Fulbright Flinders University Distinguished Chair in American Political Science. A partnership with the ANU’s Centre for the Study of Australian Politics brought Dr. John Uhr to UT-Austin in 2015, during which time he conducted research at the Harry Ransom Center (with support from the Clark Center’s Small Grants Program), spoke in the Department of Government, and addressed a class on Australian Society and Politics. Finally, the Center has also facilitated relations between energy researchers at UT-Austin and their counterparts at the University of Queensland. These are but a few highlights from the Center’s long lists of visitors and events. 

The Clark Center recently established ties with the Australian Studies Center at Renmin University. China, an important economic trading partner with Australia, is home to a growing number of Australian Studies Centers—40 by last count! In 2018, Dr. Evans delivered, by invitation, a series of talks in Beijing as part of activities to celebrate Australian Studies Week at Renmin University. Discussions are underway for a reciprocal visit by Dr. Yongxian Zhang to the UT-Austin next year. The Clark Center will be looking to partner with other organizations across campus to organize events in conjunction with Dr. Zhang’s visit.

Fostering Undergraduate Research

International partnerships have also enhanced the Clark Center’s Undergraduate Research and Mentorship Program. In 2015, the Center worked with Dr. Uhr, then Director of the Centre for the Study of Australian Politics, to coordinate a special undergraduate research workshop at the ANU. Clark Scholars Maureen Clark and Conor Danaher participated alongside several honors students from the ANU’s Department of Politics and International Relations. The following year, the Clark Center collaborated with Dr. Jennifer Curtain to organize a similar workshop at the University of Auckland at which Clark Scholars Darcey Holender and Emily Rohles presented papers. These types of events provide supportive settings for UT-Austin undergraduates to present their work and engage with the research of other students.


The Hon. Peter McGauran speaking at the ANZSANA 2019 conference.


















UT-Austin Graduate Student Carolina
Moehlecke presenting in Guadalajara in 2018.


ANZSANA President Miguel Alejandro Híjar-Chiapa and Dr. John Higley.





Dr. Yongxian Zhang, Director of the Australian Studies Centre at Renmin University, and Dr. Evans in Beijing in 2018.

  • Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies

    The University of Texas at Austin
    300 W 21st St STOP F1900
    HRC 3.137
    Austin, Texas, 78712