The Hon. Xanana Gusmão
The Honorable Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão, leader of the resistance struggle for self-determination and the liberation of the East Timorese people. This led to his imprisonment, where he continued to work for East Timorese independence from Indonesian rule. After achieving independence he served as the first President (2002–2007) and subsequently, the fourth Prime Minister (2007–2015) of East Timor where he led the building of the new State and consolidation of democratic governance. On February 16, 2015, Xanana Gusmão announced that he was stepping down as Prime Minister to make way for a new generation. He was then appointed and currently serves as the Minister Mentor and Minister of Planning and Strategic Development in East Timor.
The Hon. John Brumby
The Hon. John Brumby was Premier of Victoria (2007 – 2010) and has immense experience in public life serving for more than 10 years as Treasurer and then Premier of Victoria, 6 years as Leader of the Victorian Opposition and 7 years as Federal MHR for Bendigo during the period of the Hawke Government.
Since retiring from politics, Mr Brumby has accepted a number of appointments including: Professorial Fellow at both the University of Melbourne and Monash University; Chairman of the Motor Trades Association of Australia (MTAA) Superannuation Fund; Independent Director of Huawei Technologies (Australia) Pty Limited; and National President of the Australia China Business Council.
Mr Brumby was Chair of the COAG Reform Council from January 2013 to June 2014. He is widely published on a range of issues including Federation, tax reform and China.
Dr. Erika Feller
Dr. Erika Feller (LLB(Hons)/BA 1972), is the former Assistant High Commissioner at the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), responsible for overseeing the protection of 34 million refugees, internally displaced and stateless people through the development of UN policies, law, procedures and framework. Currently, she is a Vice Chancellor's Fellow at the Melbourne School of Government, and her conference presentation is titled, 'Global people movement: an ultimate challenge to democracy'.
Dr. John Keane is Professor of Politics at the University of Sydney and at the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin (WZB). He is the co-founder and director of the Sydney Democracy Network (SDN). His Life and Death of Democracy was short-listed for the 2010 Non-Fiction Prime Minister's Literary Award. It is the first full-scale history of democracy for over a century. He is renowned globally for his creative thinking about democracy.
Mukulika Banerjee is Associate Professor in Social Anthropology at the London School of Economics and the Inaugural Director of the LSE South Asia Centre. She grew up in India, took a first degree in English followed by Masters degrees in Sociology, all at the University of Delhi. She completed her DPhil at the University of Oxford in 1994 and was appointed a post-doctoral Junior Research Fellow at Wolfson College Oxford the same year. She took up her first Lectureship in 1996 at University College London and joined LSE in 2009. Her latest book Why India Votes? was published by Routledge in 2014. She is currently working on a monograph on democracy and village life. Her doctoral research was on an anti-colonial movement of non-violent civil disobedience among the Pashtuns of the NWFP that was published as The Pathan Unarmed (2000). She is also a co-author of a book on the modernity of fashion, The Sari (2003) and edited Muslim Portraits (2007). Mukulika also has an active interest in music and the arts, gives regular public lectures on a wide range of subjects and has been part of the leading cast of an international feature film. She has also made a documentary (with CultureWise) for BBC Radio 4 on the Indian elections and makes regular appearances on radio and television.
Keping Yu (俞可平) is the new Chair, Professor and Dean, School of Government, Peking University, Beijing. He is the former Director of the Center for Chinese Government Innovations at Beijing University. He is an internationally renowned speaker and scholar. His noted books include Democracy is a Good Thing. In addition to his academic work he has also acted as an advisor on political reforms to the Chinese government. Yu is also the New World Senior Fellow in the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation in the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.