Member, CNAS Board of Advisors
Former Prime Minister of Australia
Scott Morrison served as Prime Minister of Australia from 2018 to 2022, leading his nation through the most significant challenges Australia had faced since the Great Depression and the Second World War.
Under Mr. Morrison’s national leadership, Australia delivered one of the most successful COVID-19 responses of any nation in the developed world, saving more than 30,000 lives, over 1 million jobs and 700,000 businesses.
At the end of Mr. Morrison’s term, Australia had the third lowest COVID fatality rate in the OECD, one of the highest vaccination rates in the world and an economic response that saw Australia outperform all G7 and almost all OECD nations in both employment and economic growth.
On the international stage, Mr. Morrison was the architect and founder of the landmark AUKUS trilateral defence agreement between Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States that secured coveted access to US nuclear submarine technology and was a founding member of the Quad Leaders Dialogue. During Mr. Morrison’s term as Prime Minister Australian defence spending increased to more than 2% of GDP and he updated Australia’s defence strategy and security posture to address an increasingly assertive China. Mr. Morrison also established the first ever reciprocal access defence agreement with Japan and the first ever Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between ASEAN and any other country.
Domestically, Mr. Morrison stewarded the Australian economy to its lowest unemployment rate in almost 50 years while being one of only nine countries in the world to maintain a AAA credit rating from all major international credit rating agencies. This enabled ongoing investment in the essential services Australians rely on to support their high standards of living.
Mr. Morrison was made a Chief Commander of the United States Legion of Merit for his leadership in addressing global challenges, was awarded the Jerusalem Prize by the World Zionist Organisation for services to the Australia-Israel relationship and the inaugural Grotius Prize by the UK Policy Exchange for his work and support of the international rules-based order.
Prior to becoming Prime Minister, Mr. Morrison held three Cabinet portfolios in the Australian Government from 2013-2018 serving as Federal Treasurer, Minister for Social Social Services and Minister for Immigration and Border Protection. Mr. Morrison first entered the Australian Parliament at the Federal Member for Cook in 2007.
Mr. Morrison holds a Bachelor of Applied Science with Honours in Applied Economic Geography from the University of New South Wales. Mr. Morrison was born in 1968, is married to Jenny and they have two teenage daughters. They all live together in Sydney.