Michael Kirby to deliver public lecture in Adelaide

The Honourable Michael Kirby AC CMG

The Honourable Michael Kirby AC CMG

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Retired High Court Justice the Honourable Michael Kirby AC CMG will discuss the impact of international law on the current legal system at a public lecture at the University of Adelaide tomorrow night.

Mr Kirby, who served on Australia's High Court from 1996 until his retirement earlier this year, will deliver the 2009 James Crawford Biennial Lecture, focusing on the synergy between international law and common law.

During his time on the bench, the former High Court Justice was instrumental in bringing international law more directly into Australia's legal system, particularly in the area of human rights.

Mr Kirby enjoyed a distinguished legal career stretching across five decades and built a highly regarded reputation for his liberal, compassionate and progressive views.

At 35 he became the youngest man ever appointed to the federal judiciary and in 1982 he was appointed a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) for his services to law.

In 1991 Mr Kirby received Australia's highest civil honour when he was made a Companion of the Order of Australia as well as being awarded the Human Rights Medal in the same year.

Mr Kirby's international profile was raised in the late 1970s when his legal expertise on a wide variety of issues, from privacy, to data security, bioethics and human rights, as well as HIV/AIDS, was sought by the OECD, UNESCO, the World Health Organization and the United Nations.

He will deliver the fourth James Crawford Lecture on International Law, named after one of the University of Adelaide's most distinguished graduates. Professor Crawford is Whewell Professor of International Law at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom and a leading silk in international law, constitutional law and maritime law.

Tomorrow night's lecture will be broadcast live to an international audience, with a video link to the University of Adelaide's Malaysian legal alumni.


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