Five of this semester's interns will give a presentation on a topic of their own choice:

Cooperation between the Gulf Monarchies

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) aims to effect 'coordination, cooperation and integration' between its members on regional economic, political and security issues. The Gulf monarchies are, however, increasingly foregoing shared approaches in favour of pursuing unilateral policies, particularly in response to regional conflict. This presents a puzzle as to why states within an organisation, which seeks to foster unity between them, are pursuing contradictory projects across the Arabian Peninsula and Horn of Africa. Roisin Browne seeks to answer this by drawing on recent events in Yemen.

The Global Diffusion of Net Zero Emissions Pledges

Pledges to net zero emissions have rapidly become the key mechanism through which countries and businesses aim to limit dangerous climate change. The number of countries with 'net zero targets' rose dramatically from 24 in 2018 to almost 150 by the end of 2021. Today, 88% of emissions, 92% of GDP and 89% of the population are covered by a 'net zero' target. The quick emergence and voluntary nature of pledges has seen them differ discursively and behaviourally between actors. Isobel Logan will explore the state of net zero pledges, the key political challenges that are faced and what this means for the ability of the international system to address climate change over the next 30 years.

Interdependence between the United States and China in the technology sector

Ryan Lung will discuss the symbiosis between the technology industries of the United States and China. For the past two decades, ideas and capital have flowed freely between Silicon Valley and China's technology sector, with significant benefits for both parties. Rising geopolitical tensions between the US and China may, however, unravel this relationship. Concerns from the United States government about US capital and expertise being used to aid its main geopolitical rival has led to discussion about significant restrictions on American investment in China. These developments raise important questions about the role of innovation and technology in the US-China rivalry.

The Future of China and the Global Financial System

China is at the global forefront in digital currency development. The digital yuan will bring a period of historic change in the global financial system, improving the efficiency of financial flows and slowly challenging US dollar hegemony. Nadia Maunsell asks how China might leverage the e-CNY to increase its influence in the global economy and grapple with questions of privacy, trust in Chinese institutions, and foreign exchange controls. As China's share in the world's foreign reserves increases, how might other nations respond?

National Security and International Trade: A New Battleground for China and Western Powers

In recent years the security exception within the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade has become more prominent in international trade disputes with the WTO's multilateral trading system. Global powers are beginning to utilise this security exception to further strengthen their national security agendas. Recent cases have begun to suggest the potential scope and application of this exception. Ella Whitehurst will outline and discuss these developments and discuss them in relation to recent trade conflicts between the China and the West, as well as identifying future challenges for the WTO in managing the interplay between security and economics.

Roisin Browne is a fourth-year student at the University of Sydney studying a Bachelor of Arts/Advanced Studies (Politics and International Relations, Advanced French).

Isobel Logan is a fourth-year student at the University of Sydney, studying a Bachelor of Arts/Advanced Studies (Politics and International Relations, Economics).

Ryan Lung is a third-year student at the University of Sydney studying a Bachelor of Arts/Advanced Studies, majoring in History and English.

Nadia Maunsell is a recent graduate with a Bachelor of International Studies/Media at the University of New South Wales, where she majored in Communications and Journalism.

Ella Whitehurst is a third year Juris Doctor student at the University of New South Wales, with two Bachelor degrees in Asian Studies and Languages from the Australian National University.

(For more information, go to the Internships page​)


We will have space for a limited number of participants in-person at the Glover Cottages, tickets to be pre-paid. Once the limit for in-person attendees is reached, tickets will no longer be sold on the website or at the door.

Refreshments will be served.

This event will also be streamed online via Zoom. Register by clicking the "get tickets" button below. Once you have registered, you will receive a follow-up confirmation email on the day of the event (Tuesday, June 20 containing details of the Zoom link and how to join the event.

The Zoom event will start at 6.30pm AEST (Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne time).

For further information please email:

Photo from left to right: Ryan, Nadia, Ella, Roisin and Isobel


Glover Cottages
Kent Street 124-134
Millers Point, New South Wales, Australia

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