Kathryn James


Accepting PhD Students


Research output per year

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Personal profile


Kathryn teaches and researches in taxation law and policy, with specific expertise in the value added tax (VAT) or goods and services tax (GST) and with a specific focus on the interplay between tax law and policy and distributive justice.

Kathryn is a Discovery Early Career Research fellow from December 2019 to December 2024 for a project that examines - Whether Australia Can and Should Reform the GST (DE190100346).

The project builds upon her research to date that has focused on explaining the rapid global rise of the VAT/GST. Her book, The Rise of the Value-Added Tax (Cambridge University Press, 2015), provided the first comprehensive account of the rise of the VAT and was informed by various disciplinary perspectives including politics, history, economics and the law. Kathryn was the inaugural recipient of the Graham Hill International Fiscal Association Research Prize for the outstanding quality of the doctoral research upon which the project was based.

Kathryn has published on tax law and policy including publications in the British Tax Review, Australian Tax Forum, Australian Tax Review and Theoretical Inquiries in Law. She has presented a number of papers on taxation law and policy including at Cambridge University, Tel Aviv University, UCLA and the University of British Columbia.

Kathryn holds a PhD in taxation law, a first class honours degree in law and a Bachelor of Arts. She was admitted as a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Victoria and her professional background encompasses experience working with the Australian Government Solicitor, the Commonwealth government and the Victorian parliament. She is an active volunteer and has a long-standing association with the Springvale Monash Legal Service.

A selection of Kathryn's papers is available at: http://ssrn.com/author=1747147

Monash teaching commitment

LAW 5006 Principles of property law SEM2/T3

Research area keywords

  • Tax law and policy
  • property law
  • administrative law
  • distributive justice

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Research Output

Applying the GST to imports of low-value goods in Australia

James, K., Aug 2018, In : Australian Tax Review. 47, 2, p. 83-113 31 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Relevance of the OECD International VAT/GST guidelines for non‑OECD countries

James, K. & Ecker, T., 1 Apr 2017, In : Australian Tax Forum. 32, 2, p. 317-376 60 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

The justice of the tax base and the case for income tax

Emerton, P. C. & James, K. A., 2017, Philosophical foundations of Tax Law. Bhandari, M. (ed.). 1st ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, p. 125-166 42 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review

The Rise of the Value-Added Tax

James, K. A., 2015, 1st ed. New York, US: Cambridge University Press. 476 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBookResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)

The Carter Commission and the value-added tax (VAT): a prescient review of the VAT before its time had come

James, K. A., 2013, The Quest for Tax Reform Continues: The Royal Commission on Taxation Fifty Years Later. Brooks, K. (ed.). Toronto Canada: Carswell, p. 155 - 177 23 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


  • 1 Submissions to industry or govt committees, commissions and inquiries

Law Reform Submission

Kathryn James (Fellow)

30 Aug 2017

Activity: External Academic EngagementSubmissions to industry or govt committees, commissions and inquiries