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Don Aitkin

Don Aitkin

Don Aitkin, historian and political scientist, was the Foundation Chair of the Australian Research Council, a member of the Australian Science and Technology Council, and a member and later chair of the Multi-disciplinary Assessment Committee of the Canada Foundation for Innovation, as well as a consultant to other Canadian research organisations. He is a former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Canberra, and his books include What Was It All For? The Reshaping of Australia (2005).

Don Aitkin reviews 'Leadership And The Liberal Revival: Bolte, Askin and the post-war ascendancy' by Norman Abjorensen

July–August 2008, no. 303 01 July 2008
Henry Bolte and Bob Askin were the ‘big men’ of state politics in the 1960s, when I was a young political scientist. Bolte I never met, and Askin I met only once, but I knew the latter’s deputy premier, Charlie Cutler, quite well. I grew up in northern New South Wales and throughout my life, it seemed, we had only ever had Labor governments. The premiers cycled by with an air of inevitable s ... (read more)

Don Aitkin reviews 'Groundswell: The rise of the Greens' by Amanda Lohrey

April 2003, no. 250 01 April 2003
First, a small tribute to Peter Craven and his colleagues for the establishment of Quarterly Essay (of which the above is the eighth issue). It is such a good idea that one wonders why it is such a recent innovation. A 20,000-word essay on an important contemporary issue, followed, in later issues, by responses to that essay, enable one to get one’s teeth into a matter of moment while it is stil ... (read more)

Don Aitkin reviews 'A Short Introduction to Climate Change' by Tony Eggleton

November 2012, no. 346 25 October 2012
Wikipedia lists fifty-three books that are currently available on the subject of climate change, and this new book will make fifty-four. Such books fall into one of two groups: they either support the orthodoxy or dissent from it. Tony Eggleton’s book is one that supports it. It is well written, clear in its argument, quite even-handed, and comprehensive. I enjoyed reading it, even though I have ... (read more)