Hugh White

Prof Hugh White


Research activity per year

Personal profile


BA(Hons) (Melbourne), BPhil(Oxon)

Research interests

Australian strategic and defence policy, Asia-Pacific security issues, global strategic affairs.


Hugh White AO is Emeritus Professor of Strategic Studies at the Australian National University.

His work focuses primarily on Australian strategic and defence policy, Asia-Pacific security issues, and global strategic affairs especially as they influence Australia and the Asia-Pacific.

He has served as an intelligence analyst with the Office of National Assessments, as a journalist with the Sydney Morning Herald, as a senior adviser on the staffs of Defence Minister Kim Beazley and Prime Minister Bob Hawke, and as a senior official in the Department of Defence, where from 1995 to 2000 he was Deputy Secretary for Strategy and Intelligence, and as the first Director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI).

In the 1970s he studied philosophy at Melbourne and Oxford Universities. 

He was the principal author of Australia’s 2000 Defence White Paper.

His major publications include Power Shift: Australia’s future between Washington and Beijing, [2010], The China Choice: Why America should share power, [2012], Without America: Australia’s future in the New Asia [2017], and How to defend Australia [2019]

Career highlights

1985-1991 Senior Adviser to Defence Minister and Prime Minister; 1995-2000 Deputy Secretary for Strategy, Department of Defence; 2001-2004 Director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, 2004-2011 Head of the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, ANU .

Expertise Areas

  • Defence Studies


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