Welcome to the Herb Feith Foundation

The Herb Feith Foundation was established in 2003 to commemorate the life and work of Herb Feith (1930-2001), volunteer, scholar, teacher and peace activist.

  • As a volunteer graduate in Indonesia in the early 1950s, Herb inspired the formation of the Volunteer Graduate Scheme that later broadened into what is now Australian Volunteers International.
  • Herb was a distinguished scholar of Indonesian politics, and his 1962 book The Decline of Constitutional Democracy in Indonesia remains the definitive study of Indonesia in the 1950s.
  • Herb’s teaching on Indonesia, Third World politics and peace studies inspired generations of students in Australia and Indonesia. He taught at Monash University from 1962 until he retired in 1990. He then returned to Indonesia as a volunteer again to teach at the Gadjah Mada University Centre for Security and Peace Studies.
  • Internationally known as a compassionate and intensely moral person, Herb championed important causes involving democracy, human rights and conflict resolution.

Set up by the Council of Monash University, the mission of the Foundation is to promote and support work of the kind to which Herb Feith devoted his life. It therefore aims to support the newly created Herb Feith Chair for the Study of Indonesia and other international educational activities in such fields as peace studies, human rights and conflict resolution. It also sponsors the Herb Feith Memorial Lectures.