ANU Law Conference: Public Law and Inequality

Date & time
8.30am Wednesday 16 February – 3pm Friday 18 February 2022

The ANU College of Law, The Australian National University, Canberra.

+61 2 6125 5375
Annual event

ANU Law Conference: Public Law and Inequality

As part of The Australian National University's 75th anniversary and to belatedly celebrate the 60th anniversary of ANU Law and the 30th anniversary of the Centre for International and Public Law (CIPL), a major public law conference will be held at the ANU College of Law in Canberra on 16-18 February 2022.

The conference will be a face-to-face event for Australian-based speakers and attendees, with international speakers and attendees able to participate through a Webinar format (which will include a live audience in Canberra). There are approximately 40 speakers on the program, with about half of those being based in Australia.

Registrations are now open! There are modest registration fees for Australian-based participants with access to the full program and exclusive interactivity with high profile networks.

International registration for limited virtual access is free, recognising that many will not be able to interact with or attend all sessions of the conference.

If you require multiple registrations on behalf of an organisation, please contact to negotiate a package.

The draft 2022 Program is available here.

Conference theme

Growing inequality is a defining challenge of our times, domestically and globally. Yet the role of inequality in social, political and economic life is often muted (sometimes, invisible) in much public law scholarship. Notably, public law’s foundational concepts were forged in a social world where the inevitability of inequality was often taken for granted. The stuttering processes of democratisation have rendered that assumption untenable. 

However, although public law scholarship has considered how the field can contribute to political equality, there has been less focus, particularly in recent decades, on the relationship between public law and material equality. The question of whether equality is achievable in a world of yawning disparities in wealth can no longer be brushed aside.

How do public law concepts, institutions and norms frame or contribute to political and material inequality?

How can public law and public law scholarship contribute to clear thinking about the set of problems associated with pervasive inequity in contemporary society?

Plenary speakers

We are delighted to introduce our plenary speakers who will be presenting during this three-day conference. 

Professor Amna Akbar
Moritz College of Law, The Ohio State University 

Professor Farrah Ahmed
The University of Melbourne

 Equality and Arbitrariness in Public Law

Associate Professor Will Bateman
The Australian National University

Constitutionalism and Inequality: before, during and after the Zero Lower Bound

Professor Rosalind Dixon
The University of New South Wales

Fair Market Constitutionalism

Professor Tarunabh Khaitan
The University of Oxford
The University of Melbourne

Plutocracy and Liberal Constitutionalism

Professor Jeff King
University College London

The Rule of Law, the State, and Inequality

Professor Samuel Moyn
Yale University

Sufficiency, Equality, and Human Rights

Professor Adrienne Stone
The University of Melbourne

Equality and Freedom of Expression

Professor Julie Suk
Fordham University School of Law

Feminist Constitutionalism and Economic Inequality

Professor Asmi Wood
The Australian National University

Love and Equality




Related activities

Annual Geoffrey Sawer Lecture

In conjunction with the conference, Professor Megan Davis (UNSW) will now deliver the Annual Geoffrey Sawer Lecture on 16 February 2022 at 5.30pm. This is a free public lecture hosted by the Centre for International and Public Law (CIPL). Registration for this lecture is separate from the conference registration.

Federal Law Review special issue on equality and public law: Call for submissions

In 2023, Federal Law Review - the flagship journal of the ANU College of Law at The Australian National University - will publish a special issue on equality and public law based on themes underlying the conference. This call for submission is open to all, including but not only participants in the December 2021 conference on equality to organised by the Centre for International and Public Law on behalf of the ANU College of Law in commemoration of the university’s 75th anniversary. It is expected that the issue will include national or comparative perspectives on equality spanning several countries. Paper submissions for this special issue are due 15 February 2022. For details about the call and for the review’s general submission requirements, please visit here. For information specific to the equality issue, please contact


Updated:  10 August 2015/Responsible Officer:  College General Manager, ANU College of Law/Page Contact:  Law Marketing Team