The Blackburn Lecture

The Blackburn Lecture is an annual event held in honour of the late Sir Richard Blackburn OBE, the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory. The lecture is held during Law Week each year. 

The general theme for Law Week and the Blackburn is “Law and Justice in Your Community”, however the lecture's topic is traditionally the speaker’s own choice. Past lecturers have concentrated on developments in the law of current relevance to the profession.

Full list of the Blackburn Lectures

The Courts and the Community, The Hon Sir Richard Blackburn OBE, 1986.

The Powers of the Police to Question and Search, The Rt Hon Sir Harry Gibbs PC GCMG AC KBE QC, 1987.

The Politics of Law Reform, The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG, 1988.

Administrative Review — the Experience of the First Twelve Years, The Hon Sir Anthony Mason AC KBE QC, 1989.

Courts, Democracy and the Law, The Hon Sir Gerard Brennan KBE AC QC, 1990.

Crown and Representative in the Commonwealth, The Rt Hon Sir Zelman Cowen AK GCMG GCVO QC PC, 1991.

Equal Rights and Anti-Discrimination Law, The Hon Mary Gaudron QC, 1992.

The State of the Judicature in the ACT, The Hon Jeffrey Miles AO, 1993.

Letting the Public Know — The Educative Role of the Courts, The Hon Michael Black AC QC, 1994.

The External Affairs Power in relation to United Nations Conventions; its effect upon the Balance of Power between Commonwealth and States, The Hon Dame Roma Mitchell AC CBE CVO QC, 1995.

Women in Law — Past Achievements and Future Directions, The Hon Chief Justice Terence Higgins AO, 2006.

The Rule of Law — Looking behind the icon, The Hon Murray Wilcox AO QC, 2007.

Law and Liberty, The Hon Ken Crispin QC, 2008.

Unelected Judges — Out of touch with the Community?, The Hon Lex Lasry QC, 2009.

Injustice within the law — an update, Julian Burnside QC, 2010.

Sentencing and judicial discretion, The Hon Justice Virginia Bell AC, 2011.

The Courts and the Community, The Hon Michael Black AC QC, 2012.

Reflections on the War on Terror, Lieutenant Colonel Dan Mori (Ret), 2013.

The Individual Judge, The Hon Justice Susan Kiefel AC, 2014.

The Legal Assault on Australian Democracy, Professor George Williams AO, 2015.

Brave New World, Deputy Chief Justice John Faulks, 2016.

Law, Morality and the Public Trust, Justin Gleeson SC, 2017.

Sleepwalking through the minefield: commercial surrogacy and the global response, The Hon Chief Justice John Pascoe AC CVO, 2018.

Pro bono: For whose benefit?, Karen Fryar AM, 2019.

50 years after the Gove land rights judgement, Graeme Neate AM, 2021.

'Post-pell' Intermediate appellate courts in evidence evaluation in the digital age, The Hon Helen Murrell SC, 2022.


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