Former Prime Minister, the Honourable John Howard OM AC, will deliver the inaugural Griffith Asia Institute Asia Lecture today (April 20).

Mr Howard, Australia’s second-longest serving Prime Minister, will speak on the theme ‘Keeping the Right Balance in Asia’.

“Griffith University was initially established with a strong focus on Asia,” said Vice Chancellor, Professor Ian O’Connor, who will introduce Mr Howard to an invited audience.

“We have retained our commitment to a deep engagement with Asia for more than 40 years when we were the first University to develop and offer a degree in Asian studies.

“Asian politics remains a significant focus of our research, engagement and collaborations across the region, making the seminal insights and observations of Mr Howard entirely appropriate for the launch of the Asia Lecture series.”


Professor David Grant, Pro Vice Chancellor, Griffith Business School, said he is delighted the former Prime Minister will deliver the first in the Asia Lecture series.

“It is fitting that a prominent and respected figure like Mr Howard should deliver the inaugural Asia Lecture, given his extensive knowledge and his leadership of Australian diplomacy in the Asia region during his time as Prime Minister,” he said.

“Griffith Business School will continue to invite keynote speakers of this calibre and quality to present the Asia Lecture in the years ahead, thought leaders with a knowledge and understanding that can help inform and frame future relationships between Australia and Asia.”

Between 1996 and 2007, the Howard government strengthened bilateral ties between Australia and many nations in Asia.During Mr Howard’s term as Prime Minister, China became Australia’s largest export destination.

“A speaker of Mr Howard’s standing also reflects the quality of research ongoing at the Griffith Asia Institute, and the work of our academic experts to build important business, education and industry relationships in Asia,” Professor Grant said.

The Honourable John Howard is a Companion of the Order of Australia and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the United States by President George W Bush. In January 2012 Queen Elizabeth II appointed Mr Howard to the Order of Merit.

In 2013, on the recommendation of the Japanese Government, he was awarded the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun.

This event is fully subscribed. Mr Howard’s addresswill be streamed live.