Contact us

Professor Kathy Laster

Director, Sir Zelman Cowen Centre

Professor Laster took up her position as Director of the Sir Zelman Cowen Centre in January 2015, and successfully gained funding for the Centre’s Courts and Tribunals Academy shortly after. The main specialisation of the Centre is in ‘law and cultural diversity’.

As Director, Professor Laster provides strategic direction and management of the Centre, both in terms of securing funds and stakeholder relations.

After more than a decade in various leadership roles throughout the public sector, Professor Laster resumed her academic career in 2011 which has seen her publish an extensive range of peer-reviewed articles and journals within the field of criminology, legal history and gender and multiculturalism in relation to the law. Many of these contributions have been highly influential on the public and legal sectors, as has her work regarding the promotion of access and equity throughout the legal system.

Professor Laster completed her LLB and Master of Arts at the University of Melbourne, before completing a Doctorate of Juridical Science at the Columbia University, New York.

Selected recent publications

Book chapters

Laster, K., Erez, E. (2017) ‘Capital Punishment in Jewish law’. In Bohm, R. and Lee, G. eds, Handbook of Capital Punishment, Routledge, 2nd ed.

Laster, K., Kornhauser, R. (2016) ‘DIY Law and Legal Representation: Some Consequences of the Rise of Amateurism and the De-valuing of Expertise’. In Asher Flynn, A. and Hodgson, J. (eds), Access to Justice and Legal Aid: Comparative Perspectives on Unmet Legal Need, Hart Publishing.

Laster, K. (2016) ‘The Court & Capital Crimes’. In Smith, S. (ed) Judging for the People: A Social History of the Supreme Court in Victoria, Allen & Unwin.

Laster, K., Erez, E. (2014) ‘The Impact of Victim Impact Statements’. In Tonry, M. (ed) Oxford Handbook of Sentencing.

Laster K., McKinna, S., Wade, E. (2013) ‘Court administrator education’. In Feming, D. (ed) Australian courts: Serving Democracy and its publics, The Australasian Institute of Judicial Administration, pp. 93-117.

Journal articles

Laster, K. (2016) ‘Future of the law: Doomsday prophet or optimist?: Susskind predicts the end of the professions’, Law Society of SA Bulletin, Vol. 38, Issue 8, pp. 28-29.

Laster, K., Kornhauser, R. (2015) ‘Electronic innovation can help fix an archaic, crowded prison system’, The Conversation.

Laster, K., Erez, E. (2015), ‘Sisters in terrorism? Exploding stereotypes’. In Women and Criminal Justice, Vol. 25, Issue 1-2, pp. 83-99.

Laster, K. and Kornhauser, R. (2014) ‘Punitiveness in Australia: electronic monitoring vs the prison’. In Crime, Law and Social Change, Vol. 62, Issue 4, pp. 445-474.

Laster, K., (2013) ‘Jury Directions for Reasonable People’, Alternative Law Journal (Legal Service Bulletin Co-Operative Ltd), Vol. 38, Issue 2, p. 61.

Laster, K. (2011) ‘Separation of powers though separation of administration?’ In Alternative Law Journal, Vol. 36, Issue 2, p. 135.

Laster, K.,  Lawrence, J. Bowness, K.and Levine, G. (2010) ‘Children’s courts and child protection: developing an evidence-informed approach’ Australian Journal of Family Law Vol. 24, Issue 1, pp 57-71.

Contact details

+61 3 9919 1842