International Industrial Dispute Resolution Conference speaker – Justice Alan Boulton AO

Updated time

Last updated

05 January 2017

Justice Alan Boulton is a Senior Deputy President of the Australian Industrial Relations Commission (AIRC). He is presently on leave from the Commission and working as the Director of the Jakarta Office of the International Labour Organization (ILO). The ILO Jakarta Office covers Indonesia and Timor Leste and is the ILO’s liaison office for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

After graduating from Sydney University, Justice Boulton worked in practice as a solicitor and then as a lecturer in the Faculty of Law at the Australian National University. In 1979 he was appointed the first Legal Officer with the Australian Council of Trade Unions. In February 1986 he was appointed as a Deputy President of the Australian Conciliation and Arbitration Commission.

Between 1989 and 1993 Justice Boulton served as the President of the Industrial Relations Commission of Victoria. From 1990 to 2000, he also served as the President of the Defence Force Remuneration Tribunal which has responsibility for the fixation of pay and allowances for members of the Australian Defence Force.

As a senior member of the AIRC, Justice Boulton has had responsibility for a wide range of industries including airlines, electricity, oil and gas, coal, meat, transport, local government, stevedoring and maritime, and Northern Territory administration.

During 1998–99 Justice Boulton worked with the ILO as a Senior Specialist in International Labour Standards and Labour Law based in Manila, Philippines. This mainly involved assisting the Indonesia in the development and drafting of new and modern labour laws and with the ratification and implementation of labour conventions.

Since 2001, as the Director of the ILO Jakarta Office, Justice Boulton has been involved in the development and implementation of ILO programmes on child labour, industrial relations, labour administration, EEO, skills development etc. and with the challenges involved in response to natural disasters and conflict—tsunami and earthquake programmes in Indonesia and more recently crisis response activities in Timor Leste. The Jakarta Office has also been innovative in developing new programmes, including on police training in handling industrial disputation, HIV/AIDS in the workplace, migrant workers, poverty reduction strategies, youth employment and education. The ILO’s growing engagement with ASEAN has included significant programmes, research and activities on key labour and employment issues in ASEAN countries and participation in important ASEAN forums.

On Australia Day 2002 (26 January), Justice Boulton was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO). The citation for the honour was: “For distinguished service to industrial arbitration and labour relations at state and national level, to the Australian Defence Force, and to the development of labour policy and standards in the South East Asian region through the auspices of the International Labour Organization.”