Dr Peter Burnett

Honorary Associate Professor
Room 6.2.1

home icon ANU College of Law, Bld 6, Fellows Rd, Acton ACT 2600

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Research interests


Peter recently completed his PhD in environmental policy and law and has been appointed as an Honorary Associate Professor in the College of Law. From 2000 to 2013 he held a number of senior leadership positions in the Federal Department of Environment and worked on a diverse range of policy and regulatory issues including development of national pollution standards, Australia's international participation in chemical and waste issues, World and National Heritage, environmental impact assessment of major developments, and reform of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act. Before joining the Federal Department he was Environment Management Authority in the ACT.

Significant research publications

Burnett, P., 2018. Australia's National Approach to 'Ecologically Sustainable Development': Success in Principle, Failure in Policy, Still in Prospect. PhD Thesis, ANU Library, Canberra, available at <https://openresearch-repository.anu.edu.au/handle/1885/156800>.

Vardon, M., Burnett, P., Dovers, S., 2016. The accounting push and the policy pull: balancing environment and economic decisions. Ecological Economics 124, 145–152. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolecon.2016.01.021


Recent news

A climate activist holds a placard at a protest
GreenLaw aims to empower the next generation of lawyers and build a better planet.

In the Media

Peter Burnett interviewed by Radio 101.5 Adelaide
Peter Burnett interviewed by Triple J Hack

Past events

Peter Burnett
1.00PM to 2.30PM PhD oral presentation
  • Peter Burnett

Peter Burnett has been researching Australia’s national policies on Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD). 

Please note, only a small selection of recent publications and activities are listed below.

Research biography

Peter is undertaking research in the fields of environmental public policy and regulation, including on the use of environmental information in devopment approvals and the role of environmental impact assessment (EIA) in environmental decision-making.

Research interests

How my works connects with public policy

As a former senior official Peter has a special interest in contributing to developments in environmental policy and decision-making. In 2019 he has contributed to events associated with the release of an OECD Environmental Performance Review of Australia and is one of a group undertaking collaborative research with the Federal Environment Department into the use of environmental information in decision-making.

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