International & Security Affairs Program
The Australia Institute recently introduced its International and Security Affairs Program. This is a tangible recognition of the global connectivity that both underpins and impacts on Australia’s place in the world and the well-being of our citizens. The contemporary global strategic and economic environment is undergoing systemic disruption. This demands new ways of thinking and new policy settings if Australia is to chart a course towards continuing prosperity and security in a stable international community. The Australia Institute is keen to contribute to that work, particularly in the face of the significant threats to humanity arising from climate change, nuclear weapons and, more recently, emergent pandemics.
Allan Behm specialises in political and security risk evaluation, policy analysis and development, and negotiating the policy/politics interface.
Following a career spanning nearly thirty years in the Australian Public Service, he was Chief of Staff to Minister for Climate Change and Industry Greg Combet (2009 to 2013) and senior advisor to the Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator Penny Wong (2017-19).
He has a significant publishing record in academic and professional journals, and is a respected commentator in both the electronic and print media. His book No, Minister – an insider’s account of the what actually goes on in Parliament House – was published by Melbourne University Publishing in 2015. It was well reviewed and remains a “go to” text for those who are interested in leadership, political management, policy development and reform.
Allan was the inaugural Chair of the Canberra Writers Festival and remains on the Board. He is also on the Board of FearLess Outreach, a not-for-profit organisation to support people living with PTSD, both those with the disorder and their families, and of the Centre for Ethics in National Security.
He has tertiary qualifications in philosophy and Asian studies. He attempts to speak Indonesian and French.
Latest News and Research
Oversight of Australia’s Spy Agencies Weak Compared to Other Five Eyes Countries
New research by The Australia Institute shows that parliamentary oversight of Australia’s intelligence agencies is weak compared to others in the ‘Five Eyes’ intelligence sharing alliance between Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom & the United States, and that increased accoun
AUST-INTEL Powers: Parliamentary Oversight of Intelligence Agencies
In Australia, trust in Parliament and government is low and generally declining, and dissatisfaction with government and democracy is rising – apart from a COVID-19 related boost in public trust in government over the last few months.
ANZUS Treaty an ‘Artefact of History’ in Coronavirus World
A discussion paper, released by The Australia Institute’s International & Security Affairs Program today highlights that the ANZUS Treaty, long seen as the cornerstone of the alliance with the United States, as being largely irrelevant to security in the pandemic era.
ANZUS and Australia’s Security
The ANZUS treaty has not passed its use-by date. Why? Because it never had one.
How Good is the Australia-China Relationship?
It is easy for governments to disguise their inability to manage complex relationships by resorting to finger-pointing and name-calling. But the over-investment in emotion usually masks an under-investment in thinking.
Improving “Alarmist & Alarming” Australia-China Relationship
In a disrupted world, how Australia manages its relationship with the dominant regional, and potentially global, power of China matters—however new research reveals the slender resources devoted to China analysis and research is preventing Australia from realising the opportunities a well-managed
Biggest Threats: National Security Approach Needs Rethink
New polling released today by The Australia Institute shows that Australians see natural disasters, economic collapse, climate change and chronic disease as the biggest threats to security.
Trust in the Time of COVID-19: Global Polling Shows Government Only Institution Trusted to Lead World out of Pandemic Crisis
Global attitudes to COVID-19 pandemic and response
The Australia Institute’s International & Security Affairs Program surveyed nationally representative samples of people in Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, the United States, Italy and South Korea about the COVID-19 pandemic. The government and friends and family are the
Former Ambassador: Less China Blame Game, More Asia Diplomacy Required
Australia’s Former Ambassador to China, Stephen FitzGerald, is today launching two discussion papers from The Australia Institute’s International and Security Affairs Program, on China and Japan in the COVID-19 pandemic.
Australia’s interests in the Middle East: A presence in search of a policy
At a superficial level, Australia’s interests in the Middle East seem to be little more than providing military ballast to support the imperial or global ambitions of great powers.