Professor Kim Rubenstein

BA (Mel) LLB Hons (Mel) LLM (Harvard)
ANU Public Policy Fellow
ANU College of Law

Areas of expertise

  • Access To Justice 180102
  • Administrative Law 180103
  • Citizenship 160602
  • International Law (Excl. International Trade Law) 180116
  • Comparative Law 180106
  • Constitutional Law 180108
  • Law And Legal Studies Not Elsewhere Classified 189999

Research interests

In addition to her areas of expertise, Professor Rubenstein was the Inaugural Convenor of the ANU Gender institute 2011-2012 and returned to that position for the first semester of 2016. She was also appointed an ANU Public Policy Fellow in 2012.


Kim Rubenstein is an Honourary Professor at ANU, having moved to take up a Professorship at the University of Canberra, as Co-Director of the 50/50 by 2030 Foundation in February 2020. and 

Kim’s research projects revolve around citizenship law and ideas about active citizenship. She is the co-series editor of Cambridge University Press series Connecting International with Public Law. Her book, Australian Citizenship Law (Lawbook, 2017) is a revised second edition of her 2002 book, representing much of the spread of her interest in her research on citizenship issues, looking at the disjuncture between the exclusive legal notion and the more inclusive normative understanding of citizenship. In 2002-2003 she was based at Georgetown University Law Center, as a Fulbright Senior Scholar to work on the status of nationality in an international law context.   Kim is a graduate of the University of Melbourne and Harvard Law School. Her graduate work at Harvard was supported by the Sir Robert Menzies Scholarship to Harvard, a Fulbright postgraduate award, and a Queen Elizabeth Jubilee Trust award. Kim’s interests also encompass teaching (where she has co-authored a book on Feedback) and the broader field of education, particularly women’s education. She is currently completing a biography of Joan Montgomery OBE, former Principal of Presbyterian Ladies' College Melbourne, and an influential educator. In the practical legal sphere, Kim has made significant contributions to the jurisprudence in citizenship. She was a member of the Independent Committee appointed by the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship to review the Australian Citizenship Test in 2008 and she has appeared three times in the High Court of Australia on citizenship matters, with her work cited in Singh v Commonwealth (2004).For a fuller biography see

Researcher's projects

Professor Rubenstein was a CI on an ARC Linkage Grant run by Professor Mary Crock through Sydney University called Small Mercies, Big Futures: Enhancing Law, Policy and Practice in the selection, protection and settlement of refugee children and youth. Professor Rubenstein's work in that project concentrated on the the relationship between citizenship and children.

Professor Rubenstein was the Principal CI on the ARC Linkage Grant oral history project Trailblazing Women and the Law (see further below). Her co-CIs are based at the University of Melbourne with a partner investigator at the National Library of Australia. The linkage partners on the project were the National Library of Australia, the National Foundation of Australian Women, Australian Women Lawyers, the Federal Court and the Family Court.

Professor Rubenstein was also a CI on the ARC Discovery Project The Court as Archive (see further below).  Her co-CIs were Dr Ann Genovese from the University of Melbourne and Dr Trish Luker from UTS. 

Professor Rubenstein was a series editor for the six volume CUP series Connecting International law and Public law which published the books from the workshop series run through the Centre for International and Public law. Each workshop brought together public law and international law scholars around a different theme. See further


Available student projects

Through the Centre for International and Public law (CIPL), undergraduate law students are able to undertake an internship towards their degree, working on a project of relevant to CIPL.

In addition, Professor Rubenstein has maintained a practising certificate and runs selected citizenship matters, and in 2017 a group of students worked with her on an AAT appeal around a decision under the Australian Citizenship Act 2007.   Students interested in this work can contact Professor Rubenstein in her new position at the University of Canberra.

A report around that experience can be seen at and the judgment in that case can be read at;query=DLSV;mask_path=au/cases/cth/AATA






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:  27 May 2024 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers