Call for Papers: The Fifth Annual Australia & the World Symposium

Wednesday 10 July 2024

Still Lucky? 60 years since Donald Horne’s scathing critique

The Fifth Annual Australia & the World Symposium



When at the age of 43, Donald Horne wrote his most famous work, The Lucky Country, the Australian federation was barely two decades older.

Horne simultaneously bemoaned and acknowledged the passive, yet surprisingly fortuitous decisions that had shaped the new antipodean state.

As luck would have it, his grim diagnosis of Australian mediocrity as “a lucky country run mainly by second rate people who share its luck,” could be brushed off in favour of the shorter version in the book’s title: simply, “The Lucky Country”.

Sixty years later, what lessons can be drawn from Horne’s critique and how actively has Australia forged its path, culturally, politically, strategically and economically? How well has it come to terms with the violent dispossession and ongoing discrimination against First Nations people?

For the Fifth Annual Australia & the World Symposium, submissions are invited from all academic disciplines exploring an aspect of the Australian experience over the decades since Horne’s 1964 work. Submissions are invited on but not limited to the following topics:

  • Economics
  • Law and human rights
  • Political economy
  • Foreign and strategic policy
  • History
  • Gender and power
  • Visual and performing arts
  • Science, technology and the environment
  • First Nations experience

The purpose of the annual symposia is to spark interdisciplinary conversations between scholars on the major issues confronting Australia and engender future research and publications. The symposium is also a potential pathway into the ANU Press Australia and the World Series.  Contributions from early career researchers and from scholars from any discipline, nationally or internationally, are welcomed.

The AuSI Annual Symposium will precede the Australian Academy of the Humanities 55th Annual Symposium also at ANU and beginning the following day: The ideas and ideals of Australia: The Lucky Country turns sixty.

To participate, please submit a title, abstract (250-500 words) and bio (100 words) by midnight (AEST) Friday 30 August 2024 by emailing

Updated:  10 July 2024/Responsible Officer:  Institute Director/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications