2014 Schuman Lecture: Indo-Pacific Lessons from a European Experiment

Peter Varghese AO – Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Monday 16 June 2014 5.00pm – 6.00pm

The European project was an attempt to pursue a strategic objective by economic means: continental peace by way of coal and steel. More than 60 years on, if measured against that original set of goalposts, it has been a successful project. Indeed, the lure of European peace and prosperity has been so attractive that the EU has grown dramatically in the last two decades. Yet Europe has many detractors, who point to the challenges of monetary without fiscal union and responding to Russian aggression as failures of the supra-national model initiated by Robert Schuman. What lessons can Australia’s region, the Indo-Pacific, draw from the European experiment?

Mr Varghese took up his position as Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on 3 December 2012.

Prior to this appointment, Mr Varghese was Australia’s High Commissioner to India from 2009 to 2012. Between 2004 and 2009, he was Director-General of the Office of National Assessments. Before that he was the Senior Adviser (International) to the Prime Minister. Mr Varghese was Australia’s High Commissioner to Malaysia from 2000 to 2002. He has also served overseas in Tokyo (1994), Washington (1986-88) and Vienna (1980-83).

Mr Varghese has held a wide range of senior positions in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Canberra, including as Deputy Secretary (2002-2003), First Assistant Secretary of the International Security Division (1997), Head of the White Paper Secretariat (1996-97) which drafted Australia’s first white paper on foreign and trade policy, First Assistant Secretary of the Public Affairs Division (1994-96), and Assistant Secretary of Staffing (1991-92). He was seconded to the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet as First Assistant Secretary of the International Division (1998-1999).

He was appointed an Officer in the Order of Australia (AO) in 2010 for distinguished service to public administration, particularly in leading reform in the Australian intelligence community and as an adviser in the areas of foreign policy and international security. He was awarded a Doctor of Letters honoris causa by the University of Queensland in July 2013 in recognition of his distinguished service to diplomacy and Australian public service.

Venue: The Hall, University House, Balmain Cres (Bldg 1), Canberra

Parking: please see the Visitor Parking Map 
 europe@anu.edu.au by 13 June 2014


ANUCES is an initiative involving four ANU Colleges (Arts and Social Sciences, Law, Business and Economics, and Asia and the Pacific) co-funded by the ANU and the European Union.