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Sustainable Sovereignty for Small Island States

19 June 2024
1.00pm – 2.00pm AEST
UNSW Law & Justice Building (Level 2 Staff Common Room) and online via Zoom
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Aerial image of a small island.

Small island states encounter significant economic challenges that cannot be easily overcome with current development practices. Decades of development loans and grants have not resulted in economic sustainability. Instead geographic, demographic and historical legacies have created conditions that make sustaining sovereignty virtually impossible in the current climate. Geography limits the creation of economies of scale, leaving intranational and international trade too costly.

In this seminar, Professor Alan Tidwell will argue that migration from small island states has eroded the local talent pool of employees. The historical legacy of colonialism and climate exploitation has imposed costs on small island states far in excess of their ability to manage. In the face of these challenges a case can be made for the establishment of an international norm through which countries in the international system undertake to sustain the sovereignty of the small island nations.

Alan Tidwell is professor of the practice and director of the Center for Australian, New Zealand and Pacific Studies (CANZPS) at the Georgetown University Walsh School of Foreign Service.

This hybrid seminar, co-hosted by the UNSW Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law and the UNSW Kaldor Centre will take place in-person at the UNSW Law & Justice Building (Level 2 Staff Common Room) and online via Zoom. Lunch will be served to those attending in person. Please indicate your attendance preference on checkout.