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What is The Holt Prize?

The Holt Prize is a biennial publishing award which recognises excellence in unpublished legal works of an academic or practical nature. The winner of the Holt Prize is awarded a $12,000 cash prize and a publishing contract with The Federation Press.

The prize is named after the late Christopher Holt, co-founder of The Federation Press, who gave many academics their first publishing opportunity. It was awarded for the first time in 2015.

The next round of submissions for The Holt Prize will open in early 2024.

2021 Holt Prize

The winner of the Holt Prize 2021 is:

William Isdale
Compensation for Native Title 

The distinguished judging panel for 2021 comprised The Hon Susan Crennan AC QC, Emeritus Professor Mark Aronson of the University of NSW and Perry Herzfeld SC of the NSW Bar.

Based on a PhD thesis he is completing at the University of Queensland, William said of his win, ‘I am beyond thrilled to be awarded the Holt Prize for 2021, and extremely grateful for the opportunity to bring the issue of native title compensation to the attention of a broader audience. Native title compensation is of huge significance to Indigenous Australians who have been dispossessed of their traditional rights to land, and to our broader society as an aspect of reconciliation’.

Compensation for Native Title will be published in 2022.

Read the media release

2019 Holt Prize

The winner of the Holt Prize 2019 was:

Shipra Chordia
Proportionality in Australian Constitutional Law

The distinguished judging panel for 2019 comprised The Hon Professor William Gummow AC, The Hon Justice Alan Robertson and Ruth Higgins SC.

2017 Holt Prize

The winner of the Holt Prize in 2017 was:

Dylan Lino
Constitutional Recognition: First Peoples and the Australian Settler State

The distinguished judging panel for 2017 were: The Hon Justice Virginia Bell AC, The Hon Keith Mason AC QC and Professor George Williams AO.

2015 Holt Prize Winners

Two entrants shared the Holt Prize in 2015:

Dr Giovanni Di Lieto
Migrant Labour Law: Unfolding Justice at Work in Free Markets

Dr Scott Stephenson
From Dialog to Disagreement in Comparative Rights Constitutionalism

Federation Press also published the outstanding works of the following 2015 finalists:

Dr Yee-Fui Ng
Ministerial Advisers in Australia: The Modern Legal Context

Dr James Watson
The Origins of the Duty to Account

The distinguished judging panel for 2015 were: Justice Stephen Gageler, Neil Williams SC and Professor Andrew Lynch.