The enduring power of the book took centre stage at the Centre for Governance and Public Policy 9th Annual Book Launch, celebrating an exceptional year of 15 books published by Centre members.
Centre Director, Professor Haig Patapan, spotlighted the impact and impression an old-fashioned book with pages continues to have in a digital age where electronic distractions are many.
Professor Patapan had delved into the world of digital data in preparation for his introductory remarks, and updated authors and guests present on some of the latest statistics from the cloud-space.
During every minute of the day, he outlined, there are 204 million email messages sent; Google receives more than 4 million search queries; Facebook users share more than 2.4 million pieces of content; Twitter users tweet 277,000 times and Amazon makes $83,000 in online sales.
“How do you cut through this noise?” he asked. “How do we engage people with serious issues?”
With an immediate and telling answer to hand, he pointed to the 15 books that were showcased at the Nathan campus launch. “We write books that continue to interest, engage and inform people around the world.”
The 15 titles penned, co-penned or edited by researchers at the Centre for Governance and Public Policy addressed and analysed a range of political and international issues, from the politics of energy to populists in powers, and from presidential rhetoric in the US to democracy in the Pacific Islands.
Launching the books, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Engagement), Professor Martin Betts, highlighted how timely and topical the various works were and commended the foresight of the authors.
“In many ways these books resonate with the news of the day,” Professor Betts said.
He drew attention to the clarity that Professor Andrew O’Neil had helped to bring to the ongoing debate around nuclear power in Australia’s Nuclear Policy: Reconciling Strategic, Economic and Normative Interests.
Professor Betts also noted the current relevance of a work like Mass Atrocities, Risk and Resilience: Rethinking Prevention, edited by Dr Stephen McLoughlin, under the shadow of conflict hot spots like Syria and Iraq.
The full list of titles published in 2015 is:
Being Political: Leadership and Democracy in the Pacific Islands
Sustainability and the Politics of Energy: Ecological Modernisation and Corporate Social Responsibility.
Populists in Power
Duncan McDonnell (& D. Albertazzi)
Negotiations in the Indigenous World: Aboriginal Peoples and Extractive Industry in Australia and Canada.
Order in Diversity. War, Trade and Rule in the Indian Ocean,
Jason Sharman (& A. Phillips)
Presidential Rhetoric from Wilson to Obama. Constructing Crises, Fast and Slow
Dialectics and World Politics
Shannon Brincat (ed)
Recognition, Violence and the Problem of Ethical Community.
Shannon Brincat (ed)
Microfinance, Rights and Global Justice.
Lou Cabrera (& T. Sorell) (eds)
Political Life Writing in the Pacific: Reflections on Practice.
Jack Corbett (& B.V. Lal) eds
Radicals and Reactionaries in Twentieth Century International Thought.
Ian Hall (ed)
Mass Atrocities, Risk and Resilience: Rethinking Prevention.
Stephen McLoughlin (ed)
The Politics of International Organizations: Views from Insiders.
Patrick Weller & Xu Yi-Chong (eds)
Japanese Translation: Comparing Westminster
RAW Rhodes & P Weller
Australia’s Nuclear Policy: Reconciling Strategic, Economic and Normative Interests
Andrew O’Neil (& M. Clarke, S Fruhling)