About Asia Society Australia
Preparing Australians for engagement with a more complex Asia
Asia Society Australia is a business and policy think-tank and membership organisation dedicated to Asia.
We are a national, independent, non-partisan, and non-political institution with a national centre in Melbourne, an office in Sydney, and programs accessible in Australia and globally through digital and face-to-face platforms.
Asia Society Australia is a centre of Asia Society – a preeminent global non-profit organisation dedicated to Asia, founded in 1956 by John D. Rockefeller 3rd, with centres in New York, Hong Kong, Houston, Los Angeles, Manila, Melbourne, Mumbai, Paris, San Francisco, Seoul, Sydney, Tokyo, Washington, DC and Zurich.
Our mission is to prepare Australians for deeper and sustainable engagement with a more complex Asia.
Our strategic priorities are linked to the major challenges and opportunities that are facing Australia and Asia:
- Broaden and deepen our understanding of a complex Asia: We help to navigate an evolving interplay of geopolitics, economics and business and examine how these forces impact Australia
- Trade and invest smarter to grow faster: We support Australian government and business in deepening of our economic partnerships with Indonesia, India, Viet Nam, Japan and Korea, and leading the debate on the future of trade policy
- Learning to live with China: We build a better understanding of China’s political economy and policy-making to shape the next chapter of Australia’s relationship with China
- Generation Asia: We empower the next generation of Asia-engaged Australian leaders
- Excellence: we provide world-class expertise, a region-wide perspective and a global outlook.
- Independence: we are an independent, non-partisan, non-political, non-profit organisation with a national mission.
- Diversity and inclusion: We are a champion of diversity - of regional outlook, of culture, of opinion and of our Asian-Australian communities.
- Respect and integrity: We value every member of our network for the contribution they make to our success. We act with the highest standards to encourage freedom of expression, creativity, collegiality, and robust and respectful debate.
Asia Society Australia was founded in 1997 by then Prime Minister John Howard to broaden interest and understanding in Australia of Asian countries and their politics, business and culture. The establishment of the Asia Society Australia was led by Hugh Morgan AC (then CEO of WMC Limited) and Richard Woolcott AC (former Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade).
Asia Society Australia Institutional Independence Policy
- The Asia Society Australia is a not-for-profit, non-governmental and non-political organisation, registered in Australia under the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission. We seek to promote mutual understanding and public debate about Asia and Australia-Asia relations.
- Asia Society globally (including all its centres) takes no institutional position on policy issues and has no affiliation with any government. Where opinions and recommendations are expressed in Asia Society publications and at our events, they reflect the views of the author or authors
- The independence of what we do is very important to Asia Society Australia and to the Asia Society Policy Institute. We will not allow limitations or conditions to be placed by funders and members — individuals, governments or companies — that compromise the independence of our research, projects, programs, products, or speaker selection.
Asia Society Australia is an independent, not-for-profit, non-governmental and non-political organisation, registered in Australia under the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission. Asia Society Australia’s peak governance body is the Board of Directors. It receives no funding from foreign governments.