Australian immigration policy at the crossroads

Australian immigration policy is at the crossroads. Our permanent and temporary migration programs are at record levels, but border protection and maritime asylum seekers have dominated public debate for over a decade. Many of the fundamental principles that have guided our policies for the last 70 years are looking more fragile. Mass movements of people in the Middle East and Africa have led to more restrictive northern hemisphere immigration policies. The UN is working on development of Global Compacts on Migration and Refugees to broker more positive approaches. Populist anti-immigration parties are experiencing resurgence many parts of the world, including Australia. Where does Australian policy go from here?


Peter Hughes is a Visitor at the School of Demography and a Visiting Fellow at the Crawford School of Public Policy at the Australian National University.

Peter has over 30 years of experience in the development and implementation of Australian and international migration and refugee policies, including associated policies related to compliance, integration, citizenship and multicultural affairs. He has represented Australia extensively in international migration and humanitarian forums. Until early 2011 he was Deputy Secretary of the Policy Group of the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship. Prior to his activities in the migration field, he worked in a number of other Australian Government agencies. In 2011–12 he chaired the Australian Government’s Access and Equity Enquiry Panel. Peter was the inaugural chair of the Australian Government’s Tuition Protection Service Advisory Board.

He is a Fellow of the Centre for Policy Development and in that capacity an active member of the Asia Dialogue on Forced Migration.

Date & time

Fri 02 Jun 2017, 3:00pm to 4:00pm


Seminar Room A ANU


Peter Hughes


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