The Australian Centre for Federalism (ACF) was saddened to learn of the recent death of Brian Galligan, a current fellow of the ACF, and a former member of the Australian National University. Brian served as the deputy director, then director of the RSSS Federalism Research Centre (1984-1994). Brian left the ANU in 1995 for the University of Melbourne where he was Vale Professor of Political Science.
Brian was a prolific writer of Australian and Comparative Federalism having written dozens of books and papers on the subject. He completed his PhD at the University of Toronto, Canada, returning to Australia in the late 1970s. At the ANU, Brian worked closely with former head of the Federalism Research Centre economist Cliff Walsh on a series of research projects on federalism which were co-sponsored by head of RSSS political science, Don Aitkin. Representative of this project is Brian’s edited book Australian Federalism (Longman 1992) associated with the 1988 Australian Bicentenary. This book is dedicated to former RSSS authorities on federalism: Geoffrey Sawer, Rae Else-Mitchell, Robert Parker and Russell Mathews. The Federalism Research Centre was then a very busy conference centre, publishing many reports edited by Cliff Walsh and Brian on aspects of federal co-operation between the national government and the states.
Brian’s twenty years as a professor of political science at the University Melbourne saw him as head of the centre for public policy (1995-1999) and as head of the political science department (2000-2004, 2012-2013). In 1998, he was elected as Fellow to the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia.
Brian was a strong supporter of the ACF and helped us tremendously in 2015, attending many of our inaugural events. Brian’s energy and dedication to promoting the study of federalism in Australia and beyond will be sadly missed. As a prominent international federalist scholar remarked to us, “Brian is a great loss to the fraternity and universe of federal studies”.
Brian died peacefully at home in Melbourne on Saturday the 14th of December, after a prolonged illness.
Tracy Fenwick, Senior Lecturer and Director of the Australian Centre for Federalism, CASS, ANU.