The Election Specials

Leading experts address a major question of foreign policy


In most Australian election campaigns, foreign policy receives relatively little attention.  This is partly because the major parties tend to take a bipartisan approach to foreign affairs, and also because foreign policy is somehow seen as having less immediate impact on everyday concerns of voters than domestic policy. 

But this reasoning is flawed. If there is a foreign policy consensus, it should be tested.  And bread-and-butter concerns – such as the price of petrol, the availability of vaccines, or interest rate hikes – depend on global developments, and on the government’s ability to respond to them.

Each Wednesday of the campaign, four leading experts will address a major question of foreign policy. Their responses will be included in the AFA Weekly newsletter and published on the AFA website.

Subscribe to the AFA Weekly newsletter to be notified when each article is live. 

Australia’s future direction in the world is too significant to be set in silence.

WEEK ONE: Wednesday, 13 APRIL

HOW CAN WE FIX THE CHINA RELATIONSHIP? Yun Jiang, Lavina Lee, Rory Medcalf and Hugh White


WEEK TWO: Wednesday, 20 APRIL

ARE NUCLEAR SUBMARINES THE ANSWER? Elizabeth Buchanan, Andrew Davies, Sam Roggeveen and Bec Strating


WEEK THREE: Wednesday, 27 APRIL

IS THE PACIFIC “STEP-UP” WORKING? John Blaxland, Tess Newton Cain, Mihai Sora and Joanne Wallis


WEEK FOUR: Wednesday, 4 May

DOES AUSTRALIA SPEND ENOUGH ON DEFENCE? ON DIPLOMACY? Caitlin Byrne, Melissa Conley Tyler, Peter J. Dean and Brendan Taylor


WEEK FIVE: Wednesday, 11 May

DO WE NEED AN INDONESIA “STEP-UP”? David Engel, Greta Nabbs-Keller, Natalie Sambhi and Michael Wesley


WEEK SIX: Wednesday, 18 May

WHAT DO WE WANT – SELF-RELIANCE OR FREE TRADE? Sonia Arakkal, Tim Harcourt, Darren Lim and Erin Watson


The first Election Special is open for everyone to read, but after that, you’ll need an AFA digital subscription or an AFA print and digital subscription to read. Browse subscription options here