Professor Nicholas Brown

ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
T: 6125 3052

Areas of expertise

  • Australian History (Excl. Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander History) 210303
  • Australian Government And Politics 160601
  • Public Policy 160510
  • Environmental Politics 160605
  • Biography 210304
  • International Relations 160607

Research interests

Australian twentieth century cultural, political and environmental history, Australian biography.


My PhD is in Australian History from the ANU, where I also worked as a research fellow in the Urban Research Program. After a period in the Australian Public Service and as Professor of Australian History, University College Dublin (2002-4), I returned to the ANU to join the Australian Dictionary of Biography and, in 2007, commenced a split appointment to the Centre for Historical Research at the National Museum of Australia. My research interests encompass a wide range of Australian history, with a focus on twentieth century social, environmental and bioigraphical history. I am particularly keen to work across disciplines, and am closely involved in several intensive workshops that support postgraduate research in biography and environmental history.

Researcher's projects

J.G. Crawford: Placing Australia in the World, examines the life and work of John Crawford (1910-1984) in framing new paradigms of economic policy that shaped Australian approaches to social reform, industry assistance, education and research while also contributing to international programs of aid, development and security.

A history of Canberra and the Australian Capital Territory, combing social, environmental and political aspects of the national capital in its region, and with an emphasis on its evolving community.

Ten Years is Enough: a biography study of Rick Farley (1953-2006), dealing with his association with the political activism in primary industries, the establishment of Landcare, the Council for Indigenous Reconciliation, the Native Title Tribunal, and the negotiation of native title and land use agreements throughout Australia.

Testing Ourselves: a history of Australian international engagement, and the role of the concept of 'the international', in Australian political culture through the twentieth century.

Down There: a social and environmental history of the south coast of New South Wales since 1920.


Projects and Grants

Grants information is drawn from ARIES. To add or update Projects or Grants information please contact your College Research Office.

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Updated:  21 June 2024 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers