Mr James Blackwell

Research Fellow in Indigenous Diplomacy
ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
T: (02) 6125 6177

Areas of expertise

  • Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Culture, Language And History 4501
  • Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Research Methods 450115
  • Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Politics 450521
  • Public Policy 440709
  • Australian Government And Politics 440801
  • Defence Studies 440804
  • International Relations 440808

Research interests

  • Global Indigenous politics
  • Australian First Nations Constitutional recognition, a Voice to Parliament, and the Uluru Statement From the Heart
  • First Nations policy design and development
  • United States domestic & foreign policy
  • Civil-military relations


James Blackwell is a Research Fellow in Indigenous Diplomacy at the Australian National University’s Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs, as well a PhD Candidate within the School. 

A proud Wiradyuri man, James’ work centres on prioritising Indigenous voices within predominately white systems of governance. He sees this work as a way to advance Indigenous knowledges and perspectives into spaces previously built around the exclusion of Indigenous voices, and create a greater presence for his community. 

James’ is currently focused on conceptualising First Nations foreign policy approaches in the Twenty-First Century, and how First Nations peoples and knowledges can be better utilised in IR theory and foreign policy practice. He also has written on U.S. domestic/electoral politics, civil-military relations, and U.S. foreign and defence policy.  

He also is a current member of the Uluru Dialogue based out of UNSW, working to support the Uluru Statement from the Heart, and on advancing a constitutionally-enshrined First Nations Voice to Parliament, both through advocacy and through research.  

Before joining the ANU, he worked as a Research Fellow in Indigenous Policy at UNSW’s Centre for Social Impact, and as a research academic at the University of Queensland’s School of Political Science and International Studies.  

James has a Master of International Relations from the University of Queensland, as well as a Bachelor of Political, Economic and Social Science from the University of Sydney. He is currently completing a PhD in International Relations at the ANU, as well as a Graduate Certificate in Wiradjuri Language, Heritage and Culture at Charles Sturt University.  



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Updated:  25 September 2023 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers