Gerard Henderson is Executive Director of The Sydney Institute. He writes for The Weekend Australian, comments regularly on radio and appears occasionally on the ABC TV Insiders programs.
Gerard Henderson studied Arts and Law at Melbourne University prior to completing his Ph.D.; and taught at Tasmania and La Trobe universities before working for four years on the staff of a Minister (Kevin Newman) in Malcolm Fraser’s Coalition government. From 1980 to 1983 he was employed in the Commonwealth Department of Industrial Relations and was Chief-of-Staff to John Howard between 1984 and 1986 (during which time Mr Howard was Deputy Leader, and later, Leader of the Liberal Party of Australia). Gerard Henderson was appointed by the Keating Government to the board of the Australia Foundation for Culture and the Humanities and by the Howard Government to the Foreign Affairs Council. He was invited to participate in Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s Australia 2020 Summit held in April 2008.
Gerard Henderson is the author of Mr Santamaria and the Bishops (1982), Australian Answers (1990), Gerard Henderson Scribbles On (1993), Menzies’ Child: The Liberal Party of Australia (1994, second edition 1998) and A Howard Government? Inside the Coalition(Harper Collins, 1995). Gerard Henderson’s important articles include (i) his 1983 essay “The Industrial Relations Club” , (ii) his 1985 re-assessment of Australia’s involvement in World War I titled “Exploding the Myth that they Died in Vain” , (iii) the introduction to his 1990 book Australian Answers (where he introduced the concept of the Federation Trifecta to explain the bipartisan agreement between political conservatives and social democrats after the creation of the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901) and (iv) his January 1993 critique of the left-wing interpretation of Australian history “Rewriting Our History” which was published in the Australia Day issue of The Bulletin.
In August 1994 Gerard Henderson profiled former prime minister Bob Hawke for the ABC TV Four Corners program. He also gives talks on Australia – from both a domestic and international focus.
The Sydney Institute is a high profile privately funded policy forum for debate and discussion. It publishes two journals (The Sydney Papers and The Sydney Institute Quarterly incorporating Media Watch), holds around 60 policy forums per year and occasional conferences and conducts a major annual lecture. The Institute enjoys good relations with both sides of mainstream Australian politics.