The Baxt Prize honours the contribution of Professor Robert (‘Bob’) Baxt AO to business law in Australia.
The Baxt Prize recognises Professor Baxt’s longstanding involvement with, and commitment to, the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia (BLS). Professor Baxt was a founding member of the BLS, served on three BLS committees (chairing two of them), served as an Executive member for more than 30 years, and was the Section Chairman from 2001 – 2003. Professor Baxt was instrumental in creating the annual Competition Workshop which is, and has been for some years, the pre-eminent workshop in this field in Australia.
Professor Baxt practised and published extensively in the fields of trade practices, corporate law and taxation law, and had a longstanding commitment to legal education. After serving as Dean of Law at Monash University from 1980 – 1988 and Chairman of the Australian Trade Practices Commission from 1988 – 1991, Professor Baxt was a partner of Allens from 1991 – 2004 and a partner (later Emeritus Partner) of Herbert Smith Freehills from 2005 – 2017. He was also a professorial Fellow of the University of Melbourne, Chairman of the Law Committee of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and the founder and general editor of the Australian Business Law Review and the Company and Securities Law Journal.
Professor Baxt was a recipient of the Centenary Medal and was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2003 for services to law.
Throughout the many phases of his extensive legal career in academia, administration and practice, Professor Baxt held a deep interest in the professional development of young lawyers.
Baxt Prize 2018 round
Entries for the Baxt Prize are now open. Submit your entry by 5pm, 30 September 2019 AEST.
How to apply
Applications must be submitted on an official application form. Please submit applications to BLS Administrator, Jessica Morrow via email Jessica.Morrow@lawcouncil.asn.au or phone 02 6246 3737.
The 2018 Baxt Prize was awarded to Simon Frauenfelder for his paper, "Penalty Privilege in Non-Curial Proceedings: The Decision in Frugtniet", in which he analyses recent decisions on the privilege against self-exposure to penalties and considers whether the privilege applies outside of judicial proceedings, in contexts such as administrative and disciplinary tribunals.
Simon is currently a reader at the Victorian Bar, having previously been a senior associate in litigation at Corrs Chambers Westgarth in Melbourne. He graduated from the University of Melbourne Law School with First Class Honours in 2011, and from June 2015 to December 2016, he was associate to the Honourable Justice Gordon of the High Court of Australia. He practices in commercial litigation, with a focus on regulatory enforcement and defence, class actions and insolvency.
Riana Cermak was awarded the 2017 Baxt Prize for her paper 'Directors' duties to respect human rights in offshore operations and supply chains: an emerging paradigm' which explores the Australian corporate law framework and director accountability for human rights violations in offshore operations and supply chains. She is interested in continuing research on the introduction of a Modern Slavery Act in Australia modelled on the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (UK).