ANU Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Young, Chancellor Professor the Hon Gareth Evans AC QC and Prime Minister Julia Gillard at the launch of the National Security Strategy.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Young speech at the launch of the National Security Strategy.

24 January 2013

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The National Security College is a specialist graduate school aimed at enhancing the functioning of the national security community, strengthening networks of cooperation between practitioners and non-government experts, contributing to the development of a new generation of strategic analysts, achieving effective outreach to business and the wider community, and further enhancing the role of ANU as a strategic endowment for the nation.

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ANU Vice-Chancellor Professor Ian Young's speech at the launch of the National Security Strategy by Prime Minister Julia Gillard on Wednesday 23 January 2013.

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Can I add a personal welcome to this distinguished gathering from government, academia and the diplomatic corps, and welcome to the new Dean of the Australia and New Zealand School of Government, Professor Gary Banks.

The University is very proud to have entered into a reinvigorated public policy partnership with the Commonwealth government.  This partnership reflects a shared interest in the development of excellence in public policy.

A critical area of national public policy - national security – is the focus of today’s speech by the Prime Minister.

Of course, here at ANU we believe there is no better place to deliver such a speech than in our public policy School. 

Following this speech the Prime Minister has kindly agreed to open the new wing of this building, which has been funded by the government as part of the ANU / Commonwealth strategic partnership.  The partnership, formally renewed in a Memorandum of Understanding in 2010, provides the platform for the Commonwealth and our national university to undertake joint initiatives, such as establishing the National Security College.

Sir Geoffrey’s service to government extended through eight prime ministers from Chifley through to Hawke, a period in which considerable changes took place in national and community aspirations, in political and policy settings and in prime ministerial styles and personalities. This says a great deal about Sir Geoffrey’s ability to absorb and adjust to new environments and new thinking. Moreover, respect is most often earned if the adviser gives firm and clear advice whether welcome or not, which is where Geoff's values of honesty and integrity served him and successive governments so well.

He was first appointed Pro-Chancellor of the University in 1988, and he became Chancellor in 1990, becoming a highly regarded Chancellor of the ANU.

In 1986 Sir Geoffrey received Australia’s highest honour- the Companion of the Order of Australia, and among other honours, in 1992 he was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star, by the Emperor of Japan for his contributions to the promotion of economic and cultural relations between Australia and Japan.

The legacy left by Geoff Yeend is a spur for high quality government in Australia.

During morning tea, after this event, it will be my great pleasure to invite the Prime Minister to unveil a plaque formally naming this the GJ Yeend Wing and I especially welcome Lady Yeend and her daughter Julie, to the University for the naming.

Ladies and gentlemen, please join me in welcoming the Prime Minister to the stage.

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