The Tony Fitzgerald Lecture and Scholarship Program was launched by Griffith University in 2009 to mark the 20th anniversary of the release of the Fitzgerald Report, which uncovered widespread corruption in the Queensland government.

The Fitzgerald Report was a watershed in the political history of Queensland, Australia, and beyond. It documented widespread corruption, poor governance and maladministration, and recommended reformed systems, institutions and practices, many of which still endure.

In addition to the justice and governance reforms, the report and inquiry served as a catalyst and inspiration to many researchers and practitioners working in these fields.

Read more about the Fitzgerald Inquiry and its impact at The Fitzgerald Legacy: Reforming Public Life in Australia and Beyond.

2019 Tony Fitzgerald lecture

Registrations now open

Scholarship Top-up

The Tony Fitzgerald Scholarship Top-up supports a Doctor of Philosophy student to conduct a three-year research project reflecting the ethos of the Fitzgerald Inquiry. The Scholarship has been awarded twice so far, and the Griffith Criminology Institute now seeks to award a third scholarship, to start in 2019.

The prestigious scholarship contributes to the capacity of our future practitioners and researchers to maintain the Fitzgerald vision - to keep Parliament in its rightful place at the centre of the democratic system but with the law, community and media entrusted with an active role to keep the system honest and open.

The fund has been established with the assistance of our generous donors and sponsors. We would like to acknowledge the following for their support:

  • Premier’s department
  • Pelerman Holdings
  • Honourable Ros Kelly AO and Mr David Morgan

Project Description and Supervision: Applications are sought from prospective students with an interest in topics in keeping with the ethos of the Fitzgerald Inquiry. Relevant topics may include corruption and its prevention, democratic governance, parliamentary reform, police reform, improvements to the justice system, contributions of the media to good governance, or related issues. Candidates from diverse backgrounds, including criminology, law, politics, public policy, journalism/media, justice studies or related areas are encouraged to apply.

A supervision team featuring eminent Griffith academics and led by an outstanding GCI researcher will be matched to the interests of the successful candidate.

Scholarship Funding: The Tony Fitzgerald Scholarship Top-up will be a $6,000 per annum stipend paid in addition to a PhD living allowance awarded as part of an Australian Government Research Training Program (RTP) Stipend Scholarship, Griffith University Postgraduate Research Scholarship or Griffith University Indigenous Australian Postgraduate Research Scholarship. These Scholarship opportunities each provide a living allowance of approximately $27,082 (2018 rate, indexed annually) per annum, which will be supplemented by the top up scholarship. Tuition Scholarships are also available for international HDR candidates.

Applicants for the Tony Fitzgerald Scholarship must meet the University’s selection criteria for entry into the PhD programme and be awarded a living allowance Scholarship to qualify for the Tony Fitzgerald Scholarship Top-up.

Application Process: Prospective students should in the first instance contact the GCI Director, Professor Janet Ransley (, with their expression of interest in applying for the Tony Fitzgerald Scholarship Top-up (by no later than 14 September 2018). This should include their full CV plus a 2-3 page proposal for the PhD research topic they would like to pursue. Applicants will then need to follow the process for submitting an online Scholarship application (due by 2 October 2018) outlined here.

Other important information: Applicants should be available to start in early 2019 and have the following attributes:

  • An undergraduate degree with Class I Honours (or equivalent) in an appropriate discipline (such as criminology, law, politics, public policy, media, journalism, justice studies or similar area).

Scholarship Recipients

Scholarship Recipients

The Fitzgerald Scholarship recipients Marni Manning and Peter Hosking discuss their projects and the implications for integrity and good governance.

30th Anniversary 2017 Tony Fitzgerald Lecture

On Monday 6 November 2017, The Honourable Margaret McMurdo AC delivered the 5th Tony Fitzgerald Lecture at the State Library of Queensland.

This year marked 30 years since the commencement of the Commission of Inquiry into Possible Illegal Activities and Associated Police Misconduct, presided over by Tony Fitzgerald QC. The Fitzgerald Inquiry exponentially improved governance in Queensland.

Over 225 guests attended the 2017 lecture including Griffith University Vice Chancellor and President Professor Ian O'Connor, Police Commissioner Ian Stewart and The Honourable Chief Justice Catherine Holmes.

The Honourable Tony Fitzgerald QC addressed the audience in the opening and the Honourable Margaret McMurdo AV delivered the lecture titled 'Governance in Queensland 30 Years On' to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Fitzgerald Inquiry. Her lecture highlighted the impact of the Inquiry on Queensland's executive, judicial and parliamentary governance and made suggestions on what works, what doesn't and how things might be done better in each of the three arms of government.

A recording of the Lecture can be viewed below or read an electronic copy of the speech here.

About the Speaker:

The Honourable Margaret McMurdo AC was President, Court of Appeal, Supreme Court of Queensland, for almost 19 years from 1998 until her retirement earlier this year. She was the first woman to hold such a position in Australia and the second person to fill this role, following the inaugural President, the Honourable Tony Fitzgerald AC.

Margaret was an Assistant Public Defender for over 13 years before entering private practice as a barrister in 1989. She was appointed a judge of the District Court of Queensland in 1991. In 1993, she additionally held a commission as a Children's  Court Judge. She was the first Queensland woman to fill both those roles.

Margaret was a member of Griffith University Council from 2003 until 2013.

In her post-judicial life, Margaret has chaired the board of Legal Aid Queensland since May 2017. She is an Adjunct Professor in the TC Bierne School of Law, University of Queensland, and patron of Women's Legal Service; Caxton Legal Service; and LawRight's Civil Justice Fund.

The 30th Anniversary 2017 Tony Fitzgerald Lecture is proudly presented by Griffith Criminology Institute and State Library of Queensland.

30th Anniversary 2017 Tony Fitzgerald Lecture

Join The Honourable Margaret McMurdo AC as she shares her unique insights into governance in Queensland, 30 years after the Fitzgerald Inquiry.


See past lecture series events