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Professor Jack Corbett DPhil, The Australian National University; BA (Hons), The University of Melbourne

Professor of Politics

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My research focuses on how actors manage the dilemmas of democratic governance.

In 2018, I will be writing a book with John Boswell and R.A.W Rhodes tentatively titled The Art of Comparison (under contract, Cambridge University Press). I will also be working on an Australian Research Council Discovery Project on the “Participation of Small States in International Organisations” with Patrick Weller and Xu Yi-Chong.  

My previous books include: Democracy in Small States: Persisting Against All Odds (2018, Oxford University Press); Australia’s Foreign Aid Dilemma: Humanitarian Aspirations Confront Democratic Legitimacy (2017, Routledge); and Being Political: Leadership and Democracy in the Pacific Islands (2015, University of Hawaii Press). I have published more than 40 journal articles since 2012, including in Comparative Political Studies, Journal of European Public Policy, European Journal of Political Research, Governance, Public Administration, Policy Sciences and Political Studies as well as numerous book chapters and other commentaries. I have also co-edited two volumes: with Brij V. Lal Political Life Writing in the Pacific: Reflections on Practice (2015, Australian National University Press) and with Doug Munro Bearing Witness: Essays in Honour of Brij V. Lal (2017, Australian National University Press). 

I hold or have held research grants from the Australian Research Council; the Australian and New Zealand School of Government; and the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. I am deputy editor of Small States and Territories Journal; co-editor of the University of Hawaii Press Topics in the Contemporary Pacific book series; co-editor of Routledge Studies in Anti-politics and Democratic Crisis; and co-convenor of the UK Political Studies Association Specialist Group on Interpretive Political Science.  

I completed my PhD at The Australian National University in 2012. After an 18-month Postdoctoral Fellowship at the State, Society and Governance in Melanesia Program I took up a Research Fellowship at Griffith University, Australia, on a joint appointment with the Centre for Governance and Public Policy and the Griffith Asia Institute. I joined the faculty at Southampton in January 2016. I hold honorary appointments at the Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs, The Australian National University, and the Centre for Governance and Public Policy, Griffith University.


Research interests

Politics and International Relations
Centre for Political Ethnography

Research Projects:
I am Principle Investigator on an Australian Research Council Discovery Project with Professors Weller and Xu (Griffith University) examining the impact of small state participation on decision making international organisations.

I am also a member of a four-person team headed by Associate Professor Dennis Grube (University of Tasmania) conducting an Australia and New Zealand School of Government funded project on Institutional Memory and Public Private Partnerships.



Co-convenor with R.A.W Rhodes of the Political Studies Association’s Interpretive Political Science Specialist Group



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Book Chapters

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Working Paper

In convene PAIR2010 Democracy and the Modern State; PAIR3040 Democracy and Democratisation in Global Politics; and PAIR6039  “Foreign Aid and International Security” 

Professor Jack Corbett
Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute University of Southampton Southampton Boldrewood Innovation Campus Southampton SO16 7QF

Room Number: 58/3079

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