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2021
Submissions closed

The NSW Premier’s History Awards were first presented in 1997 to honour distinguished achievements in history by Australian citizens and permanent residents. Held annually, the awards assist in establishing values and standards in historical research and publication and encourage everyone to appreciate and learn from the work of our historians.  

Past winners have included KS Inglis, Patricia Jalland, Inga Clendinnen, Bruce Scates and Raelene Frances, Trevor Graham, Christopher Clark, Nadia Wheatley and Grace Karskens. The NSW Premier’s History Awards are administered by the State Library of NSW in association with Create NSW. We are pleased to acknowledge the support of the History Council of NSW.

Total prize money is $75,000. 

2021 Judging Panel

Headshot Matt Allen

Dr Matthew Allen

Senior Judge

Dr Matthew Allen is a Senior Lecturer in Historical Criminology at the University of New England.  He is the Book Review Editor for the Journal of Australian Colonial History and has served as a judge on the New South Wales Premiers History Awards in 2019 and 2020 and for the History Council of New South Wales Awards & Prizes from 2016-18.

His diverse research is focused on understanding the unique and extraordinary transition of New South Wales from penal colony to responsible democracy, and the way that this process was shaped by the conflict between liberal ideals and authoritarian controls within the British world. His work on the history of alcohol, policing, summary justice and surveillance has been published in Australian Historical Studies, History Australia, the Journal of Religious History, and the ANZ Journal of Criminology and he is currently writing a history of the politics and government of alcohol in New South Wales in the period 1788-1856.

Laurence Bamblett

Dr Lawrence Bamblett

Dr Lawrence Bamblett is a Wiradjuri historian, teaching Koori maradhal (Aboriginal history) at the Australian National University. Laurie uses Wiradjuri maradhal as a tool of community development projects at his home community, Erambie Mission. His research interests include Indigenous Resurgence and the ways that representations of identity affect engagement between Aboriginal communities and mainstream institutions and services.   

Associate Professor Anna Clark

Associate Professor Anna Clark is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow at the Australian Centre for Public History at the University of Technology Sydney.

She has written extensively on history education, historiography and historical consciousness, including:Teaching the Nation: Politics and Pedagogy in Australian History (2006), History’s Children: History Wars in the Classroom (2008),Private Lives, Public History (2016), the History Wars (2003) with Stuart Macintyre, as well as two history books for children, Convicted! and Explored!Reflecting her love of fish and fishing, she also recently wroteThe Catch: The Story of Fishing in Australia.

Kate Fullagar

Professor Kate Fullagar

Kate Fullagar is professor of history at the Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences, Australian Catholic University. Her most recent book is The Warrior, the Voyager, and the Artist: Three Lives in an Age of Empire (New Haven, 2020) which won the 2020 General History Prize at the NSW Premier’s History Awards.

She is Lead Chief Investigator of an ARC Linkage project with the National Portrait Gallery called Facing New Worlds and currently a co-editor of the AHA’s journal, History Australia.   

Dr Noëlle Janaczewska

Dr Noëlle Janaczewska

Dr Noëlle Janaczewska is a playwright, poet, essayist and the author of The Book of Thistles (UWA Publishing)—part environmental history, part poetry, part unconventional memoir.

She is the recipient of multiple awards, fellowships and residencies, including the 2020 NSW Premier’s Digital History Prize, a Queensland Premier’s Literary Award, the Griffin Award, ten AWGIE (Australian Writers’ Guild Industry Excellence) Awards and a Windham-Campbell Prize from Yale University for her body of work as a dramatist.

Noëlle’s recent productions and publications include: Experiment Street (ABC Radio National, 2019); Yellow Yellow Sometimes Blue (Q Theatre /Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre, Sydney, 2018); Seoul City Sue (ABC Radio National, 2018) and audio scripts for the National Museum of Australia and the British Museum’s Rome: City and Empire exhibition.

Noëlle is an Adjunct Professor in the University of Queensland’s School of Communication and Arts. Her latest book is Scratchland (UWA Publishing Poetry Series, 2020).

Andy Kaladelfos

Dr Andy Kaladelfos

Dr Andy Kaladelfos Senior Lecturer in Criminology and Postgraduate Coordinator in School of Law, Society and Criminology in the Faculty of Law and Justice, University of New South Wales. Prior to UNSW, Andy was Senior Research Fellow at the Griffith Criminology Institute, Griffith University (2012-2018) and co-created 'The Prosecution Project', a history of the criminal trial in Australia.

 Andy's research specialities are sexual and gender-based violence, queer criminology, & immigration regulation. Originally trained in history, Andy's research is interdisciplinary, using methods and approaches from historical studies, legal studies, criminology, psychology, feminist studies and digital humanities to analyse how experiences of and responses to violence change over time, to examine the nature of the criminal justice system, and the shifting relationship between law and society. Andy is the author of 28 peer-reviewed publications on these topics, has held numerous large-scale national grants including the current Australian Research Council Discovery Project ‘Australian Violence: Understanding Victimisation in History’. 

Julia Martinez

Associate Professor Julia Martínez 

Julia Martínez (PhD) is an Associate Professor of history at the University of Wollongong (UOW) and a former ARC Future Fellow. She publishes on Australia and the Asia Pacific, on themes of colonialism, migration, gender and oceans. Her book, The Pearl Frontier: Indonesian Labor and Indigenous encounters in Australia’s northern trading network (Martínez & Vickers, 2015) won the 2016 QLD History Book Award, the NT History Book Award, and was shortlisted for the AHA Ernest Scott Prize.

Her article on Australia’s Indian Ocean connections in Australian Historical Studies won the 2018 Patricia Grimshaw Prize. Recent books are Colonialism and Male Domestic Service Across the Asia Pacific (with Lowrie, Steel and Haskins, Bloomsbury, 2019) and Locating Chinese Women: Historical mobility between China and Australia (Bagnall & Martínez eds, Hong Kong University Press, 2021).

Heidi Norman

Professor Heidi Norman

Professor Heidi Norman is a leading Australian researcher in the field of Aboriginal political history. Her research sits in the field of history and draws on the cognate disciplines anthropology, political-economy, cultural studies and political theory. She has made significant contributions to understandings Aboriginal social, cultural, economic and political history where she addresses questions of power in relation to Aboriginal citizens, the state and settler society and Aboriginal land justice.

Her research has included: a history of the NSW Annual Aboriginal Rugby League Knockout; the social and economic impact of mining in relation to Gomeroi lands; study of economic change over time and relationship to Aboriginal lives in cities. In 2015 she published a political history of Aboriginal land rights in NSW titled 'What Do We Want? A Political History of Aboriginal Land Rights in NSW'. In this first-ever study of land rights in NSW she documents the movement for land rights, how the laws changed relationships between Aboriginal people, the state and one another and the social. From 2018 she has commenced a large ARC funded study of the social, economic and cultural benefits of Aboriginal land repossession in NSW.

She is an award winning researcher and teacher. She was awarded the UTS research excellence medal for collaboration (2015), National Teaching Excellence Award for her work in Indigenous studies (2016), awarded the inaugural Gough Whitlam Research Fellowship (2017-18) and in 2018 she was announced as a 'Top 5' ABC humanities researcher. She is a descendant of the Gomeroi people from north western NSW, a member of AIATSIS, Congress and convener of the 'Indigenous Land and Justice Research hub'.