The Honorable Kevin Rudd


The Hon. Kevin Rudd

Mr. Rudd served as Australia’s 26th Prime Minister (2007-2010, 2013) and as Foreign Minister (2010-2012). He led Australia’s response during the Global Financial Crisis, reviewed by the IMF as the most effective stimulus strategy of all member states. Australia was the only major developed economy not to go into recession. Mr. Rudd helped found the G20 to drive the global response to the crisis, and which in 2009 helped prevent the crisis from spiraling into depression.

As Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Mr. Rudd was active in global and regional foreign policy leadership. He was a driving force in expanding the East Asia Summit to include both the U.S. and Russia in 2010, and initiated the concept of transforming the EAS into a wider Asia Pacific Community. On climate change, Mr. Rudd ratified the Kyoto Protocol in 2007 and legislated in 2008 for a 20 percent mandatory renewable energy target for Australia. He represented Australia at the 2009 Copenhagen Climate Change Summit which produced the Copenhagen Accord, for the first time committing states to not allow temperature increases beyond two degrees. He was appointed a member of the UN Secretary-General’s High Level Panel on Global Sustainability and is a co-author of the report Resilient People, Resilient Planet for the 2012 Rio+20 Conference. Mr. Rudd drove Australia’s successful bid for its non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council for 2012-2014. His government also saw the near doubling of Australia’s foreign aid budget to approximately $5 billion, making Australia then one of the top ten aid donors in the world. He also appointed Australia’s first ever Ambassador for Women and Girls to support the critical role of women in development and reduce physical and sexual violence against women.

Domestically, Mr. Rudd delivered Australia’s formal national apology to indigenous Australians. In education, his government introduced Australia’s first-ever nationwide school curriculum, undertook the biggest-ever capital investment program in Australian schools with the building of thousands of new state of the art libraries across the country, as well as introducing the first-ever mandatory national assessment system of literacy and numeracy standards. In health, Mr. Rudd in 2010 negotiated with the Australian states a National Health and Hospitals Reform Agreement, the biggest reform and investment in the health system since the introduction of Medicare 30 years before. His government established a national network of leading-edge cancer care centers across Australia, before introducing the world’s first ever plain-packaging regime for all tobacco products. To improve the rate of organ and tissue donation, he established Australia’s first National Organ and Tissue Transplant Authority. In 2010, his government introduced Australia’s first-ever paid parental leave scheme and implemented the biggest increase in, and reform of, the age pension since federation. He also founded the National Broadband Network to deliver high-speed broadband for every household, business, school, hospital, and GP in the country.

Mr. Rudd joined the Asia Society Policy Institute as its inaugural President in January 2015. ASPI is a “think-do tank” dedicated to using second-track diplomacy to assist governments and businesses in resolving policy challenges within Asia, and between Asia and the West. He is also Chair of the Independent Commission on Multilateralism where he is leading a review of the UN system over the 2015-16 period. In 2014, Mr. Rudd was a Senior Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School where he completed a major policy paper U.S.-China 21: The Future of U.S.-China Relations Under Xi Jinping. He is a Distinguished Fellow at Chatham House in London, a Distinguished Statesman with the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, and a Distinguished Fellow at the Paulson Institute in Chicago. Mr. Rudd is a member of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization’s Group of Eminent Persons. He is proficient in Mandarin Chinese and serves as a Visiting Professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing, and he co-chairs the World Economic Forum’s China Council.

Mr. Rudd in his private capacity has established the Australian National Apology Foundation to continue to promote reconciliation and closing the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians. He has also established the Asia Pacific Community Foundation to promote the cause of regional economic, security, and environmental collaboration across the region.



On 17 November 2016, The Huffington Post published an op-ed by ASPI President Kevin Rudd on how carbon markets are a concrete way to fight climate change.
ASPI President Kevin Rudd wrote an op-ed in the Herald Sun on the election of Donald Trump as the next U.S. President.
ASPI President Kevin Rudd calls for bold climate leadership in his plenary address at the 2016 BSR Conference.
ASPI President Kevin Rudd spoke with DevEx on November 1, 2016 about climate finance and U.S.-China climate cooperation.
ASPI President Kevin Rudd spoke to BBC about TPP and trade on November 2, 2016.
On October 11, 2016, Kevin Rudd took part in a conversation with the University of Oxford China Centre about the new relationships between China and Europe.
Officials from the United States and ASEAN defend the Southeast Asian organization's "frustrating" consensus model.
The iconic Nobel laureate addressed Asia Society for the first time as Myanmar's most powerful official.
In a World Post article published on September 13, 2016, ASPI President Kevin Rudd lays out a set of principles for UN reform ahead of the 2016 UN General Assembly.

Ahead of the 2016 G20 Summit, ASPI President Kevin Rudd spoke to CCTV-America on September 1, 2016 to preview the agenda for the international summit, which took place in China for the first time.
In a Time Magazine article published on August 31, 2016, ASPI President Kevin Rudd argues that the UN needs to be reformed for a new age.
ASPI President Kevin Rudd spoke with Charlie Rose on July 13, 2016 about U.S.-China relations and the recent South China Sea ruling by The Hague.
In a special discussion on April 13, 2016, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) President Jin Liqun spoke with ASPI President Kevin Rudd about the path ahead for the AIIB.
ASPI President Kevin Rudd discusses the need for the United States and China to use diplomacy to manage "conflicting perspectives" in the Asia-Pacific.
ASPI President Kevin Rudd's speech at the 2016 Her Village International Forum about the women who have influenced his life, his efforts in government to advance gender equality, and the challenges that lie ahead.
The Indian finance minister affirmed his country's interest in expanding regional trade opportunities during a conversation with Asia Society's Kevin Rudd.
While on a visit to China, ASPI President Kevin Rudd shared his thoughts on the Chinese economy in a Facebook video recorded on March 29, 2016.
ASPI President Kevin Rudd discusses China's economic transition and its impact on the global economy with Bloomberg's Vonnie Quinn on "Bloomberg Markets."

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