School of Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS)

Carlyle Thayer

Carlyle A. Thayer

Emeritus Professor

Phone: +61 2 6268 8860
Fax: +61 2 6268 8879

Professional Background

Carl Thayer was educated at Brown University in the United States. He holds an M.A. in Southeast Asian Studies from Yale and a PhD in International Relations from The Australian National University (ANU). He studied Vietnamese language at Yale, Cornell and Southern Illinois University, Thai language at The University of Missouri at Columbia, and Lao language at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale.

Before embarking on an academic career, Carl served in Vietnam with the International Voluntary Services (1967-68) and as a volunteer teacher in Botswana with the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee. He began his professional career in 1976 as lecturer at the Bendigo Institute of Technology (renamed the Bendigo College of Advanced Education). In 1979, he joined The University of New South Wales and taught first in its Faculty of Military Studies at The Royal Military College-Duntoon (1979-85) and then at University College, ADFA (1986-present). He served as Head of the School of Politics from 1995-97. In 1998, he was promoted to full Professor.

Carl has served three major periods away from University College. From 1992-95, he was seconded to the Regime Change and Regime Maintenance Project, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, ANU. From 1999-2001, he was granted ‘leave in the national interest’ to take up the position of Professor of Southeast Asian Security Studies and Deputy Chair of the Department of Regional Studies at the U.S. Defense Department’s Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies in Hawaii. From 2002 to 2004, he was seconded to Deakin University as On Site Academic Co-ordinator of the Defence and Strategic Studies Course, the senior course, at the Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies (CDSS), Australian Defence College, Weston Creek.

Professor Thayer has spent special study leave at the ANU’s Strategic and Defence Studies Centre; Harvard’s Center for International Affairs; International Institute of Strategic Studies in London; Institute of Strategic and International Studies, Chulalongkorn University in Thailand; Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore; and the Department of Political Science at Yale. In 2005, he was the C. V. Starr Distinguished Visiting Professor of Southeast Asian Studies at The Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C. During 2006-07 Carl directed the Regional Security Studies module at the Australian Command and Staff College, Weston Creek. In 2008, he spent the first half of the year as the inaugural Frances M. and Stephen H. Fuller Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Center of Southeast Asian Studies, Ohio University in the United States and the second half of the year as Visiting Fellow at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, ANU.

Courses Taught
Research Interests / Projects

Professor Thayer is the author of over 380 publications including:

Areas of Potential Postgraduate Supervision