Podcast: In Conversation with Australian High Commissioner, Ewen McDonald

Welcome to Trans-Tasman Tales, the free podcast by the Australian High Commission in New Zealand.

In today’s episode Deputy High Commissioner Andrew Cumpston sits down with Australian High Commissioner to New Zealand, Ewen McDonald. Ewen and Andrew cover off the major topics – the trans-Tasman relationship, Ewen’s first impression of New Zealand, and of course, the footy.


The full episode is available here.

Why Prime Ministerial Visits Matter

Peter Woolcott

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New Zealand Prime Minister Bill English and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in Queenstown for the annual Leaders Meeting.

As the Australian High Commissioner to New Zealand the event you look forward to most each year is the annual Leaders Meeting.

While invariably short, these visits can accomplish a huge amount for a bilateral relationship.  They set the direction for work that will continue long after the PM’s plane leaves, and they build the foundations of mutual respect and trust between leaders which is so important in maintaining strong relationships between countries. It is also a chance to cut through bureaucratic thickets and get decisions made.

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Public policy lessons from across the ditch

Alison LinkedinThis week’s blog is by Alison Duncan. Alison heads up the economic and trade team at the Australian High Commission in New Zealand. She has previously served in Indonesia and Solomon Islands. 

She undertook ANZSOG’s Executive Master in Public Administration  from 2013-14.  In 2015, she was awarded a Young Public Sector Leader Award by the Institute of Public Administration of Australia in recognition of her academic and professional achievements. Continue reading

Cyber security: Australia, New Zealand and Napoleon

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Andrew Cumpston

“Geography is destiny” is a much debated diplomatic polemic, reportedly first uttered by Napoleon.* The saying may be an oversimplification, but it has always had an element of truth to it. There is no doubt that people’s opportunity and threat analysis has always been heavily influenced by who is nearby. States such as Singapore, Italy or Kazakhstan have traditionally had a fundamentally different set of strategic calculations than Australia and New Zealand because of geography.

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