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Julia Gillard, Tony Jones, Michael Kirby Unveiled in Hawke Centre Lineup

Julia Gillard, Tony Jones, Michael Kirby Unveiled in Hawke Centre Lineup

The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre has this week unveiled an impressive lineup of speaking events for the latter half of this year, including Julia Gillard, Tony Jones, Michael Kirby and Geoffrey Robertson.

Known for hosting prestigious speakers, the Hawke Centre has this week announced a strong set of prominent voices to speak over the next few months.

“In a post-truth world, there is an increasing need for credible information,” Jacinta Thompson, Hawke Centre’s executive director tells The Adelaide Review. “The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre sees a role to give a platform for expert speakers to deliver the facts, and also a responsibility to stimulate debate and explore solutions for society’s most complex issues.”

Thompson says that the speakers fit well in the Hawke Centre’s goals of “strengthening our democracy, valuing our diversity [and] building our future”.

“Innovative interpretations of these themes creates striking diversity in the program, for example three upcoming events, explore literature, mental health and human rights,” says Thompson.


The first cab off the rank is Tony Jones, of ABC’s Q&A and Lateline, who will appear in conversation with Julia Lester to discuss his debut fiction novel, The Twentieth Man on Wednesday, August 23. A political thriller set in 1970s Australia and Yugoslavia, The Twentieth Man will follow the exploits of a journalist seeking to unravel the mysteries of a global terror movement, and its entanglement in Australian politics. Copies of the novel will be available for purchase at the event and Jones will take part in a signing session afterwards.

Next in line is former Prime Minister and chairwoman of beyondblue Julia GIllard, who will deliver the 2017 Annual Hawke Lecture on Thursday, October 12. Gillard’s speech will be delivered in the capacity of her new role at beyondblue, and focus on the increasingly discussed issue of mental health.

“Mental Health is one of the most pressing public health issues of our time,” says Thompson. “The Hawke Centre has chosen to dedicate a premier event on its calendar, the Annual Hawke Lecture, to the issue of mental health.”


Finally, and the day after Gillard’s address, Geoffrey Robertson Q.C. will appear in conversation with Michael Kirby AC CMG for the 2017 UniSA Nelson Mandela Lecture on Friday, October 13. The lecture, which is designed to promote fundamental human rights and freedoms, is, Thompson says “a unique opportunity hear from two of the world’s leading human rights commentators and defenders as they examine current world dilemmas.”

Explore the full lineup of Hawke Centre events here

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