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Leading Australian constitutional practitioners and scholars come together in this volume to reflect on 100 years of the Australian Constitution and on possible directions for the future. The essays are designed both to evaluate the Australian Constitution, in the light of the experience of the past 100 years, and to identify issues for the future.
Most of the authors are prominent figures in Australian constitutional law at the turn of the past century. Some are distinguished in the practice of constitutional law: a former Chief Justice of Australia, Sir Anthony Mason; a senior Justice of the Federal Court of Australia, who also was the inaugural President of the Native Title Tribunal, Justice Robert French (recently appointed to the High Court of Australia); a leader of the constitutional Bar, David Jackson QC. Others are well-known constitutional scholars: Leslie Zines, George Winterton, Geoffrey Lindell, Brian Opeskin, George Williams, Cheryl Saunders, John Waugh and Christos Mantziaris. The two exceptions are equally distinguished, but for other reasons. Professor John White is a leader of the Australian scientific community. Professor Thomas Fleiner is a leading international constitutional scholar and a former president of the International Association of Constitutional Law.
One of the strengths of the book is the breadth and depth of knowledge of its authors. In reflecting on their collective experiences over at least the last two decades of the 20th century, it adds an important new layer to the foundation of constitutional experience on which the next generation of scholars and practitioners may build.