When Kevin Rudd won the November 2007 federal election, he became Australia's 26th Prime Minister. Less than a year after wresting the leadership from Kim Beazley, Rudd led Labor to victory over a Coalition government that had reigned for eleven years and which just months previously, had looked virtually unassailable.
Labor detected a mood for change in the electorate and pursued it relentlessly. Throughout the campaign, Rudd offered the Australian people 'fresh thinking', a 'new style of leadership' and 'a positive plan for our country's future'.
Though criticized for 'me-tooism' and for casting himself as 'Howard-lite', he projected moderation and caution, reassuring the electorate that changing their vote would be a safe option.
Voters rewarded him on polling day with a majority of 23 seats in the House of Representatives.
The November 2007 election victory was historic in several senses. For the first time since Federation, Labor governments held office in every Australian jurisdiction. Rudd, a Queenslander as he reminded voters throughout the campaign, became only the fourth Prime Minister to be elected from his home state. His deputy, Julia Gillard, became the first woman to hold the office of Deputy Prime Minister.
John Howard became only the second Prime Minister to lose his seat, when Bennelong fell to Labor's Maxine McKew- Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Dr. Anne Tiernan
Dr Anne Tiernan is an Australian Research Council (ARC) Postdoctoral Fellow with the Centre for Governance and Public Policy at Griffith University, and the Australia and New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG) Research Program.
With a research and teaching expertise in public policy, Dr Tiernan has developed and conducted professional development programs for public sector managers and policy officers. A qualified educator, she led the review and redesign of the Public Sector Management (PSM) Program on behalf of the Australian Public Service Commission (APSC) in 2002 and 2004. She has taught programs for ANZSOG, Griffith University, Swinburne University of Technology and the Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA).
Dr Tiernan's research interests include: executive advisory arrangements - particularly ministerial staffing arrangements and relations between ministerial offices and the public service, policy influence and public policy agenda-setting. Her book, Power Without Responsibility: Ministerial Staffers in Australian Governments from Whitlam to Howard published recently by UNSW Press, examines the implications of the growth of ministerial staffing arrangements, particularly how this has impacted on the quality of information and advice to decision-makers.
Dr Tiernan is currently working on a major ARC-funded research project investigating the policy advisory capacity of the Australian Public Service (APS), and its ability to support decision-makers through its policy advising functions.