Dr Paul Porteous  BEc, LLB, MPA, PhD

Presidential adviser, diplomat, international lawyer and academic, Paul is an internationally recognised thought-provoking leadership theorist and practitioner with experience spanning the globe. He has been a representative to numerous international organisations including the United Nations and International Court of Justice and as a consultant in the United States, South East Asia, China, Middle East, Europe and Africa. Paul was both Visiting Faculty at Harvard Kennedy School and a Research and Teaching Fellow at Harvard's Center for Public Leadership, where he received the “Dean's Award for Excellence in Student Teaching”. As well as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Canberra, Paul is an Associate Fellow at the Doha Global Institute for Strategic Research at Qatar’s Hamad Bin Khalifa University, where he has recently been working in Jordan and Qatar on post-conflict Higher Education issues for the region.

Paul has provided executive leadership training for Ministers and Heads of Departments across the world and has coached hundreds of CEOs and senior executives in the not-for-profit, government and corporate sectors. He was Director of the Australian Secretariat for the United Nations World Summit for Social Development, leading the development of innovative social policies addressing global poverty, unemployment and social disintegration.

For four years, Paul was Senior Adviser to the President of Madagascar during the most dynamic period in the nation’s history, developing cutting edge leadership practice for nation building and the alleviation of poverty. This focused on policy development across all portfolios, restructure of government institutions, negotiations with stakeholders and donors, and disaster co-ordination for cyclones/floods/drought. He was a founder of the National Leadership Institute of Madagascar, training and mentoring officials ranging from Ministers to Village Chiefs. Paul was also Director of the Presidential Initiative on Women and Leadership which brought together 3,000 women from 22 regions to lead national Development.

Internationally, Paul was Program Director of the Social Leadership Singapore Program for eight years and has provided executive leadership training for the Permanent Secretaries of the Federal Government of Nigeria, Deputy Secretaries of Malaysia, Dubai School of Government, Beijing Advanced Course on Crisis, Recovery and Transitions, Vietnamese National Academy of Public Administration, Post-war Reconstruction and Development Unit at the University of York, Singapore Civil Service College, Doha Center for Conflict and Humanitarian Studies, UK Overseas Development Institute and with UNDP’s Global Centre for Public Service Excellence.

In Australia, Paul is Director of the Centre for Social Leadership, developing innovative programs across government, business and community sectors focused on social impact, cross-cultural relations and conflict management. This includes development of unique community leadership programs with local, rural and multicultural communities. Paul worked in Executive positions in the Not-for-Profit sector for four years on issues ranging from education, health, Aboriginal, youth, child protection, disability, prisons, discrimination and regional development. He has taught senior executive programs in every State/Territory in Australia and New Zealand, and also Masters and graduate programs. He is an Academic Associate to 50/50 by 2030 Foundation on gender equality.

Paul has extensive experience working in government including foreign affairs, human rights, regional development, transport and industrial relations. He was Secretary of the Australian National Transport Council and worked extensively with corporate CEOs and Ministers to pioneer leading edge responses to globalisation and developed Australia’s first National Logistics Strategy. Paul’s earlier career was as a senior diplomat in the Australian Embassy in the Netherlands during the dynamic years of the fall of the Berlin Wall, representing Australia across Europe ranging from the European Energy Charter to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Paul has a Master of Public Administration degree from Harvard University, both Economics and Law degrees from the University of Sydney and a PhD from the University of Canberra. He is admitted as a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of Australia and worked for many years as an accredited mediator in conflict resolution.