Alistair Nicholas

Alistair J. Nicholas is Executive Vice President – Director, Special Projects at Powell Tate Australia. Alistair’s 25-years-plus career covers Australia, the United States and China; and includes senior positions in public affairs agency and in-house roles, in political advice, in government and diplomacy, and in journalism.

From 2000 until 2013 Alistair was based in Beijing, China, where he provided strategic advice to a range of companies including many Global Fortune 500 companies, and to the Chinese government and foreign government embassies and agencies on a range of public affairs, government relations and crisis management issues. He headed up the Corporate and Public Affairs Practices of Weber Shandwick, Powell Tate’s sister firm for the Asia Pacific Region from 2011 prior to returning to Australia.

Before moving to China, Alistair was the Trade Commissioner at the Australian Embassy in Washington, DC, where he was responsible for promoting Australian business and trade interests to the World Bank and United Nations.

Earlier in his career Alistair worked in Australia in senior corporate communications and public affairs roles, political advice, journalism, and public policy. He was policy and media advisor to several senior Liberal and National Party Shadow Ministers covering the trade portfolio.

Alistair currently also acts as Honorary Media Counsel for the Australia-China Chamber of Commerce; he is a member of the Agriculture Committee of the Australia-China Business Council; and, he is a member of the private sector advisory board to Macquarie University’s China Business Research Network.

Alistair writes about China, business and public affairs for a number of leading media publications including The Australian Financial Review. And he writes on a wide range of issues on his personal blog Speech Crime (

The views expressed in Mr Nicholas’ articles are entirely his own opinions and do not represent those of his employers or of any of his clients, or of any other organisations with which he is involved.

The Choice
28 Oct 2016 | FEATURES |  
tags: 2016 elections, Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, US Supreme Court
Whatever you think of The Donald, he's a better choice than Hillary Clinton

The Pope needs a communications Swiss Guard to protect him - from himself
4 Jul 2016 | ABOVE |  
tags: media ethics, Pope Francis
Or at least a cynical press secretary, says a communications professional.

Verdict on Chinese organ harvesting: not proven
27 May 2015 | FEATURES |  
tags: book reviews, China, Falun Gong, organ trafficking
Plenty of lurid details, but a dearth of solid proof.

Forecasting is tough, especially about the future
13 Jan 2015 | FEATURES |  
tags: futurists, Stratfor
George Friedman makes some surprising predictions in his look at the next 100 years.

Let’s face it: “The Interview” is a lousy, lousy film
1 Jan 2015 | POPCORN |  
tags: college humour, North Korea
The censored film is not just an insult to the Supreme Leader of North Korea, but to your intelligence.

No country for old obituarists
27 Oct 2014 | FEATURES |  
tags: Australia, Gough Whitlam, media
Young journalists found it hard to separate the real Gough Whitlam from the myth of grandeur and martyrdom.

Nov 22, 1963: John F Kennedy
22 Nov 2013 | FEATURES |  
It was not Lee Harvey Oswald who shattered the dream of Camelot.

How redefining marriage threatens freedom of speech
12 Aug 2013 | FEATURES |  
tags: Australia, religious freedom, same-sex marriage
A pioneer of gay liberation has made it clear that the real goal is an assault on religious values.

Two cheers for Hollywood
17 Apr 2012 | FEATURES |  
tags: corporate social responsibility, Hollywood, parental respsonsibility
It will take more than Blood Diamond or Green Carpet Awards to show that the film industry is serious about corporate responsibility.

People have to come before profits, even in a crisis
21 Mar 2011 | FEATURES |  
tags: ethics, Japan, tsunami
The Fukushima Daiichi power plant disaster has become a textbook example of what not to do in an emergency.

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