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Patricia Ranald

Honorary research associate, University of Sydney

Dr Ranald holds a Master’s Degree in Political Science from the University of Adelaide and a Master of Public Policy degree from the Graduate School of Business at the University of Sydney. Her Doctoral thesis in International Relations at the University of NSW was a comparative study of the World Trade Organisation and regional trade agreements, and won the UNSW Humanities Research Centre Award for best doctoral thesis of 2000.

She was formerly a Senior Research Fellow at the University of New South Wales, and has also worked for community organisations and unions.

She has published widely on the social impacts of globalisation and trade agreements. Her publications range from books, refereed journal articles and book chapters to submissions to parliamentary inquiries and opinion pieces in newspapers and on websites.

Current research interests include the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, the EU-Australia Free Trade Agreement and other bilateral and regional trade agreements in the Asia-Pacific region, and Investor-State Dispute Settlement .

Dr Ranald is Convener of the Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network (AFTINET), a network of community organizations, including church groups, human rights groups, public health, union and environmental organizations. AFTINET advocates for fair trade policies based on human rights, labour rights and environmental sustainability.

Recent Publications in books and journals

Ranald, P. (2021). Trade Agreements, Labour rights and Democracy. In Joo-Cheong Tham and Caroline Kelly (Eds.), Democracy, Social Justice and the Role of Trade Unions, (pp. 171-190). United Kingdom: Anthem Press.

Ranald, P. (2018). The Real Costs of 'Free' Trade Agreements and the Need for Alternative Trade Policies. In D. Cahill, P. Toner (Eds.), Wrong Way: How Privatisation and Economic Reform Backfired, (pp. 311-327). Carlton: La Trobe University Press in conjunction with Black Inc.

Ranald, P. (2020). Covid-19 pandemic slows global trade and exposes flaws in neoliberal trade policy. Journal of Australian Political Economy, 2020 (85 Special Issue), 108-114.

In the media

How Clive Palmer is suing Australia for $300 billion with the help of an obscure legal clause (and Christian Porter) (2023) The Conversation, April 4,

“What is the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, about to be negotiated in Brisbane?” (2022) The Conversation, December 9,

“British investors could sue Australia over climate action if UK joins trans-Pacific trade pact,” (2022)
The Conversation, September 8,

“Labor must amend trade agreements that allow foreign companies to sue the government over energy and climate policies” (2022) The Guardian, August 10,

“Why trade policy should matter in the election” (2022) Australian Outlook , Australian Institute of International affairs, May 18,

“Trade rules have thwarted global efforts to fight COVID” (2022) The Guardian, February 23,

“Pfizer refuses to share vaccine knowledge as it announces $36 billion in vaccine revenue,” (2021), Michael West media, November 30, (2021)

How a new trade deal could make it harder to improve life for Australians in aged care”, (2021)
The Conversation, July 27, Sydney.

Republished in SeniorAu

Also republished in Business Daily Media.

“Rich countries are first in line for COVID-19 vaccines because a handful of companies control quantities and price” (2021) The Guardian, July 22,

“There’s a lot we don’t know about the UK trade agreement we are about to sign,” (2021) The Conversation, June 16, Sydney,

Republished in Business Daily Media June 16 2021

“ A clause in the UK-Australia trade deal could let companies sue governments,”(2021) The Guardian, June 1,

“RCEP has Limited Trade Gains and Ignores Labour and Human Rights,” (2020) in Outlook, Australian Institute of International Affairs, Canberra ,November 27, 2020,
“We’ve just signed the world’s biggest trade deal, but what exactly is the RCEP?” (2020) The Conversation November 16, 2020, Sydney

Republished in the Canberra Times November 18, 2020,

“Another Australian miner sues another poor country, this time Barrick’s Porgera in PNG,” (2020)in Michael West Media, October27, 2020,

“Last to know: the European Union knows more about our trade talks than we do”, (2020)in The Conversation August 17, 2020,

“Corporations prepare to sue governments over actions to save lives as pandemic reveals other trade policy flaws,” (2020) The Conversation, April 23, 2020


  • 2013–present
    Research Associate, University of Sydney


  • 2011
    The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement: Contradictions in Australia and the Asia Pacific region, The Economic and Labour Relations Review, Vol. 22, No. 1
  • 2010
    The Politics of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement in Australia, No Ordinary Deal: Unmasking the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement
  • 2008
    The Australia-US Free Trade Agreement, Towards Reperipheralisation? International Trade and Neoliberal Globalism, Routledge series Studies in Governance and Change in the Global Era
  • 2006
    The Australia- US Free Trade Agreement: a contest of interests, Journal of Australian Political Economy, No 57
  • 2004
    Analysing the bonds of the Australia-US Free Trade Agreement, Journal of Australian Political Economy, No 54
  • 2002
    Global Corporations and Human Rights: the Regulatory Debate in Australia, Corporate Environmental Strategy, Vol. 9, No.2
  • 2002
    Where are the Jobs in the Job Network? Competitive Tendering of Employment Services, Privatisation, Globalisation and Labour: Studies from Australia
  • 2002
    Social movement unionism in East Asia? Regional and South Korean union movement responses to the crisis, Reconfiguring East Asia: Regional Institutions and Organisations after the Crisis
  • 2002
    Korean unions: resisting the International Monetary Fund, Protest and Globalisation
  • 2001
    Unions and Globalisation, Globalisation: Australian Impacts
  • 2000
    From one Side of the Counter to the Other : the Impact of Competitive Tendering of Employment Services on Employees, Conference Proceedings , Association of Industrial Relations Academics of Australia and New Zealand
  • 2000
    Privatising Water in the Driest State, Labour and Industry, Vol. 11, No.2
  • 1999
    Disciplining Governments: The MAI Proposals, Stopping the Juggernaut: Public Interest versus the Multilateral Agreement on Investment
  • 1999
    Union responses to the Economic Crisis in South Korea and the Philippines, Journal of Industrial Relations,
  • 1999
    Solidarity versus neoliberalism: union regional and interregional organisation in Europe and Asia, Journal of the Asia Pacific Economy, vol. 4, No 1
  • 1997
    GATT, APEC and the Australian Labour Movement, Free Trade? Implications for Australian Labour, Centre for Labour Studies Research Papers, No 7,
  • 1996
    Howard’s Way: the Public Sector, Journal of Australian Political Economy, No. 37
  • 1996
    Redefinition of the Public Sector: Serving Citizens or Customers?, Keeping it Together: the State and Civil Society in Australia
  • 1995
    National Competition Policy, Journal of Australian Political Economy, No. 36
  • 1995
    ACTU Submission to the Industry Commission Inquiry into Contracting and Competitive Tendering in the Public Sector, Australia's Contracting Public Services: Critical views of Contracting out by the Public Sector
  • 1993
    The Employee Perspective, Reforming the Public Service, Lessons from Recent Experience
  • 1987
    Women's Organisations and the Cold War, Australia’s First Cold War, Vol. 11
  • 1982
    Feminism and Class: The United Associations of Women and the Council of Action for Equal Pay in the Depression, Worth Her Salt: Women at Work in Australia