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By Departmental Research Seminar

Tuesday 30 Oct (Week 12), 2-3.30pm

Recreation Room (S2.6), Level 3, Australian Hearing Hub, Macquarie University

The Department of Ancient History in conjunction with the Macquarie University Ancient History Association (MAHA) offers a research seminar series, intended to bring together those within Macquarie and outside who have an interest in the languages, histories, and cultures of the ancient world. View the schedule for the research seminar.

All are welcome! Please arrive on time and join us after the seminar for coffee, tea and biscuits!

Convenor: Dr Alexandra Woods Twitter


The final week of the Session 2 2018 Department of Ancient History Research Seminar will feature two Macquarie alumnae in Drs Janet Wade and Norman Ricklefs. They will both speak about their respective careers pathway and experiences and more generally on Why is History is Important?

Dr Janet Wade

2018 Macquarie Gale Rome Scholar

Dr Janet Wade is the current Macquarie Gale Rome Scholar, resident at the British School at Rome (BSR) from January to June 2018. Janet’s research project is entitled: “Walking the via Flaminia: following in the footsteps of Thomas Ashby and his companions”.</a> As part of this project, Janet plans to traverse the entire length of the via Flaminia on foot (and bicycle), along with previous Macquarie Gale Rome Scholar, Nicole Moffatt. Following on from BSR Archivist Alessandra Giovenco’s blog on the many faces of Ashby, in a recent post on the Ancient History @ Macquarie Blog, Janet talks in more detail about her own exploration both of the via Flaminia and of the rich collection of material in Thomas Ashby’s archives at the BSR.

Dr Norman Ricklefs

Chairman: NAMEA (www.namea-group.com)

Norman Ricklefs has worked in the Middle East for 20 years, and in Iraq for more than a decade. He served in Iraq from 2005 to 2010 with the Australian and US governments.  Norman served as a branch chief providing analytical support to the Commanding General Coalition Forces during the period of national elections in 2005 through the period of sectarian civil war in 2006; then as political advisor to the Australian commanding general Iraq and Afghanistan in 2007; as advisor to the deputy head of the Iraqi Defense Ministry during the battle of  Basra in 2008; and finally as senior advisor to the Iraqi Minister of Interior from 2009-2010 during the period of transition as US forces withdrew from the cities and Iraq held its national election.  Norman worked and traveled all over Iraq in his official duties.  

For his service in Iraq, Norman was awarded the US Department of Defense’s Outstanding Civilian Service medal, the US Department of Defense’s Commander’s Public Service medal and the Operational Service medal with clasp from the Australian Department of Defence.

After leaving government service in 2011, Norman  founded a consultancy and lobbying group in Dubai called Iraq Advisory Group (IAG: www.iraqadvisorygroup.com) and has been advising and lobbying on behalf of the oil and gas sector, banking sector, defense and security industry and also advising the US Government and Congress.  IAG is mostly focused on lobbying the highest levels of the Iraqi Government.  For example, IAG was responsible for preventing the expulsion of the foreign private security companies in 2012, it has negotiated and supported large US defense deals with Iraq, and in 2014 successfully negotiated a joint venture on behalf of the Iraqi Ministry of Transport.  

In 2013 and 2014, Dr. Ricklefs took a sabbatical from IAG to serve as national security advisor to the Libyan Prime Minister, on behalf of U.S. Embassy Tripoli. In 2015, after returning from Libya, Dr Ricklefs established NAMEA (www.namea-group.com), an advisory firm that focuses on the Arab and Islamic world, from Morocco to Indonesia.

A World Economic Forum Global Thought Leader and member of Chatham House, Dr Ricklefs has a PhD in history.  Prior to his government service he taught history at university level and worked as an archaeologist and historian – conducting fieldwork in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt and publishing on the Middle East during the Roman period.

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Departmental Research Seminar

The Department of Ancient History in conjunction with the Macquarie University Ancient History Association (MAHA) offers a research seminar series, intended to bring together those within Macquarie and outside who have an interest in the languages, histories, and cultures of the ancient world.