In 2017, Australia  won a dispute at the World Trade Organization (WTO) about the Tobacco Plain Packaging Act 2011 (Cth). The case arose under the WTO treaty on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). The outcome has significant implications for trade jurisprudence and the rights of states to impose public health measures that interfere with their international obligations and the privileges of trademark owners.

The seminar was delivered by Professor Mark Davison of the Monash University Faculty of Law. From 2011, he was Expert Advisory Group on Plain Packaging of Tobacco Products to the Australian Government. He is a member of the Intellectual Property Committee of the Law Council of Australia.

Date: Tuesday 29 August 2017
Time: 5:30pm
Location: Forgan Smith Building Moot Court



In this technological age, it has become almost impossible to “know it all” when it comes to the law. In the ever-changing landscape of evolving law in the twenty-first century, now, more than ever, practising lawyers must be equipped with the skills to understand the principles which underpin the laws they will analyse, apply, and advise upon.  This is particularly so when it comes to the complex world of companies, corporate regulation and corporate governance.

It was against this backdrop that ALPSA brought together Lesley Symons and Jennifer Robertson, our two guest speakers, who provided attendees with:

  • An overview of the key principles upon which our current systems of corporate regulation and corporate governance are based;
  • Real life examples of those principles in practice; and,
  • A concluding discussion about current corporate regulation and governance issues.

Date: Tuesday March 2018 2017
Time: 6pm
Location: Forgan Smith Building Room W332



In celebration of International Women’s Day 2017, ALPSA hosted a feminist jurisprudence seminar with Professor Heather Douglas and Dr Francesca Bartlett. The panel discussion focused on the Australian Feminist Judgments Project and acknowledged the role of women in legal philosophy at the TC Beirne School of Law.

The Australian Feminist Judgments Project is an inspired and innovative research project which investigates the possibilities, limits and implications of a feminist approach to legal decision-making. The project involves a group of feminist academics, lawyers and activists who have agreed to write alternative judgments in a series of Australian legal cases. By re-writing and re-imagining original legal decisions through a feminist lens, the project employs praxis—the application of theoretical insights to real world situations—to investigate the influence of feminist theory on judicial decision-making.

Date: Tuesday 14 March 2017
Time: 6pm
Location: Forgan Smith Building Room W332



On the 28th of February 2017, ALPSA held its first event for the year – a relaxed BBQ with the opportunity to chat with our executive.

Time: 6-8pm
Location: Level 5 Advanced Engineering Building



“Big Legal Ideas: Do They Work?”

What does it mean to live under the ‘rule of law’? How do we keep the legislative, executive and judicial powers ‘separated’? Can Parliament and the Courts really guarantee ‘justice’? And do any of these concepts actually make sense in day-to-day practice?

ALPSA was joined by Queensland’s outgoing Solicitor-General Walter Sofronoff QC to share his insights into the ideas at the heart of our legal system, and how they work – or don’t – in real life. The address was followed by a Q&A with the audience.



ALPSA hosted a free talk on the topic ‘The Growth of Legislative Activity: Challenges & Implications’, with:

  • The Hon. Justice Fraser (Queensland Court of Appeal)
  • Mr Ian Davis (Queensland Law Reform Commission)
  • Professor Suri Ratnapala (TC Beirne School of Law)

Date: May 6th 2009
Time: 6-7 pm
Location: Banco Court, Supreme Court Complex (George Street, Brisbane)



ALPSA hosted an interactive panel discussion on “The legal, ethical and philosophical implications of the Holocaust“. The discussion generated some interesting and lively debate. The discussion was preceded by a brief viewing of a 20-30 minute extract from Claude Lanzmann’s landmark film, Shoah, which features footage and testimony from victims, bystanders and perpetrators of the Holocaust.

  • Time: 6.30pm
  • Date: Monday 15th September
  • Venue: Moot Court, University of Queensland Law Library

The three panellists who will participate in the discussion were:

  • Dr Jonathan Crowe, Senior Lecturer in Legal Philosophy (UQ)
  • Dr Anthony Cassimatis, Senior Lecturer in International Law (UQ)
  • Dr Marguerite La Caze, Lecturer in European Philosophy and Ethics (UQ)



The Annual Launch Event was held at the Banco Court, with Justice Keane of the Court of Appeal, Mr Peter Applegarth SC and Professor Suri Ratnapala debating issues related to privacy.



The annual weekend workshop was conducted by Professors Martin Krygier, Alex Ziegert and Adam Czarnota on 14-15 May 2005. The theme for the workshop was Eastern European Law and Legal Theory. The workshop was held at Customs House, and included a panel Q&A session. The speakers presented on the following topics:

  • Adam Czarnota, “Central-Eastern European Legal Theory in Context:An Historical Overview”
  • Alex Ziegert, “Eugen Ehrlich and European Realism – the call for sociological enlightenment”
  • Martin Krygier, “What Oxford Won’t Tell You about the Rule of Law, but Krakow, St Petersburg, and the Bukowina will: the Legacy of Ehrlich, Malinowski, and Petrazycki”



The lecture was given on Friday 13 May 2005 at Customs House, by Professor Sir Neil MacCormick, Regius Professor of Public Law, University of Edinburgh, Member, European Parliament, Vice President, Scottish National Party, and Honorary Queen’s Counsel.

The lecture was published, with modifications, as part of ‘Chapter 4: A Problem: Rules or Habits?’ in Neil MacCormick, Institutions of Law: An Essay in Legal Theory (Oxford, 2007) 61.



ALPSA hosted eight seminars in total:

  • “An Investigation into Some Fundamental Themes and Movements in Australian Commercial Law” (4 May 2005) by Associate Professor Simon Fisher.
  • “The Philosophy of Contract Interpretation” (11 July 2005) by Professor John Carter
  • “The Commons and Commerce in Knowledge” (11 August 2005) by Professor Peter Drahos
  • “Jurisprudence in Corporate and Business Law” (18 August 2005) by Professor Bryan Horrigan
  • “Themes and Tensions Underlying the Law of Contract” (8 September 2005) by Sir Anthony Mason
  • “Why Restitution?” (3 October 2005) by Professors Charles Rickett and Ross Grantham
  • “The Courts and Consumerism: Damages for Economic Loss” (17 October 2005) by the Honourable Justice PA Keane
  • “Causation and the Enron Litigation” (14 November 2005) by Professor Jane Stapleton



The 2005 ALPSA programme was launched by the Honourable Paul de Jersey, Chief Justice of Queensland on Monday 14 March. The text of the address is available from the Supreme Court Library Archive (pdf link). The launch was held at the Sir Samuel Griffith Room of the TC Beirne School of Law and attended by the Honourable Rod Welford (Attorney-General and Minister for Justice), the Honourable Margaret White, Professor Charles Rickett, Glenn Ferguson (President of the Queensland Law Society), academic staff, students, and ALPSA members.

“There is a rather hackneyed sentiment that a lawyer does not need to know the law, just where to find it. This no doubt reassures lawyers with deficient memories. But there is an unspoken premise, which is that having located the law, you will have the understanding to apply it. It is more beneficial to understand the principle underlying a legal proposition, than to be able to recite the proposition itself. Developing that understanding is the essential challenge of our law schools.”

~ The Honourable Paul de Jersey