Paul Harpur, BBus (HRm), LLB (Hons) LLM, PhD, solicitor of the High Court of Australia (non-practicing)

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BBI Visiting International Research Fellow

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Dr Paul Harpur was appointed a International Distinguished Fellow with the Burton Blatt Institute (BBI) in 2015 and remains an active BBI member.  He has worked with other members of BBI, including with Professor Peter Blanck in a co-authored article; with Ursula Connolly, Socially constructed hierarchies of impairment: the case of Australian and Irish Workers' access to compensation.  Dr Harpur and Professor Blanck continue to work on other projects together.

Dr Harpur is the holder of the prestigious Fulbright Future Scholarship "Universally Designed for Whom? Disability, the Law and Practice of Expanding the "Normal User".  As part of his Fulbright, Dr Harpur will spend a considerable period of time in Syracuse and the DC offices of BBI.

Dr Harpur is based in Australia where he is a senior lecturer at the TC Beirne School of Law, University of Queensland.  He chairs the UQ Disability Inclusion Group which supports the university in its implimentation of the UQ Disability Action Plan. Dr Harpur received a commendation in the 2019 UQ Awards for Excellence for his service to promoting disability inclusion and the UQ DIG received the highest accolade in the diversity category, the UQ Award for Excellence.

Dr Harpur's recent monograph, drafted in part while he was visiting in Syracuse with BBI, Discrimination, Copyright and Equality: Opening the E-Book for the Print Disabled (2017) Cambridge University Press analyses the interaction between anti-discrimination and copyright laws. Dr Harpur has also led a range of projects, including an International Labour Organization project assessing labour rights in the South Pacific, including a particular focus on the rights of persons with disabilities.

Dr Harpur has a mixture of practice and research experience, having formerly practiced as a lawyer and continuing to work as an industrial relations special advisor in a national private practice, IRIQ Law, as a special advisor. Dr Harpur is active on boards and promoting the rights of persons with disabilities, as well as the rights of persons with disabilities to use assistance animals. He also regularly appears in the news speaking on disability law and policies.

Outside the law, Dr Harpur has previously been a professional athlete with a disability, competing in the 2000 Sydney and 2004 Athens Paralympics, the 2002 Manchester and 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games and a range of other World Titles and international competitions.

Dr Harpur's publications and speeches can be found on his Google Scholar page. Further information can be found on his Linkedin page.