Dr Phillips is an Associate Professor of International Relations and Strategy in the School of Political Science and International Studies at the University of Queensland. His research focuses on war, strategy and international order, with a particular focus on Great Power rivalry and asymmetric violence as drivers of transformative change in world politics. His works include From Hollywood to Bollywood? Recasting Australia’s Indo/Pacific Strategic Geography (Australian Strategic Policy Institute, 2016) and How the East Was Won: Barbarian Conquerors, Universal Conquest and the Making of Modern Asia (Cambridge University Press, 2021). From 2024-2028, he will be an Australia Research Council Future Fellow, investigating how, when and why rising powers have won regional domination in Asia from 1500CE-present. 

Dr Phillips teaching specialties include terrorism and insurgency in world politics, the evolution of the international system, and strategic studies. He also has extensive Professional Military Education (PME) experience in teaching and curriculum design. He has regularly served as a Visiting Fellow at the Australian Defence College, teaching into the Australian Command and Staff Course (ACSC) and Defence and Strategic Studies Course (DSSC) – Australia’s two premier post-graduate PME courses for mid and senior-level national security leaders. From January-June 2023, he also served as a Resident Fellow at the Australian War College, where he convened the DSSC’s foundational unit in grand strategy.


Areas of research