Allan Du Toit

Adjunct Senior Lecturer

Dr Allan du Toit AM retired from the Royal Australian Navy as a Rear Admiral in early 2016 after 40 years combined service in two Commonwealth navies. He was born and raised in South Africa and entered the South African Navy in 1975. He joined the RAN in 1987 and commanded HMAS Tobruk during peacekeeping operations in Bougainville, the Australian Amphibious Task Group, the multi-national maritime interception force enforcing UN sanctions against Iraq, Combined Task Force 158 in the northern Persian Gulf, and Border Protection Command. He also served in a wide range of single-service and joint appointments ashore including Deputy Chief of Joint Operations, Head of Navy Capability, and Head of Navy People. His final appointment was as Australia’s Military Representative to NATO in Brussels.

Allan, who remains an active reservist, is currently non-executive director and chair of two defence companies, JFD Australia and Sonartech Atlas. He is also the Strategic Maritime Adviser to the Northern Territory Government and a member of the Defence Honours and Awards Appeals Tribunal. He holds a Bachelor of Military Science (Arts) degree from the University of Stellenbosch, a Graduate Diploma in Strategic Studies from the Australian Defence College, a Master of Defence Studies degree from UNSW, and was recently awarded his doctorate by UNSW where he is a Visiting Fellow, Adjunct Lecturer, and a founding member of the Naval Studies Group at UNSW Canberra. He was on the Advisory Board of ANCORS at the University of Wollongong from 2008-13 and served as President of the Australian Naval Institute from 2011-13.

Allan has written and lectured on historical and contemporary defence, naval and maritime affairs both in Australia and abroad, has written two books, and has contributed chapters to several publications. His research interests include the evolution and development of the British and Commonwealth navies during the twentieth century, particularly the Royal Navy, Royal Australian Navy, and the South African Navy, as well as contemporary strategic and defence developments in the Indo-Pacific, with a focus on the maritime domain.


Du Toit AK, 1992, South Africaʼs Fighting Ships Past and Present, Ashanti Publishing, Rivonia, South Africa
Du Toit AK, 1976, Ships of the South African Navy, SA Boating Publications, Cape Town, South Africa
Book Chapters
Du Toit AK, 2012, 'Simon's Town and the Cape Sea Route', in Hore P (ed.), Dreadnought to Daring 100 Years of Comment, Controversy and Debate in The Naval Review, Seaforth Publishing, Barnsley, United Kingdom, pp. 198 - 212
Conference Papers
Du Toit AK, 2011, 'Commanding Combined Task Force 158, 2007-08', in Perryman J; Forbes AR (ed.), Australian Naval Command and Leadership in Recent Operations, Sea Power Centre Australia, UNSW Canberra, pp. 19 - 28, presented at King-Hall Naval History Conference 2011, UNSW Canberra, -
Du Toit AK, 2010, 'The Long Haul: The Evolution and Development of an Independent South African Navy', in Gimblett RH (ed.), From Empire to In(ter)dependence: The Canadian Navy and the Commonwealth Experience, 1910-2010, The Canadian Nautical Research Society, Ottawa, pp. 82 - 103, presented at Canadian Navy Centenial History Conference, Ottawa, -
Du Toit AK, 2009, 'The Anglo-South African Simonstown Agreement', in Young K; Mitchell R (ed.), The Commonwealth Navies: 100 Years of Cooperation, Sea Power Centre Australia, UNSW Canberra, pp. 111 - 128, presented at King-Hall Naval History Conference, UNSW Canberra, -
Du Toit AK, 2009, 'Multinational Interception Operations', in Mortimer J; Stevens D (ed.), Presence, Power Projection and Sea Control: The RAN in the Gulf 1990-2009, Sea Power Centre Australia, Sea Power Centre Australia, pp. 205 - 214, presented at The RAN in the Gulf 1990-2009, Sea Power Centre Australia, -
Journal articles
Du Toit AK, 2016, 'The Anglo-South African Simon's Town Agreement', Naval Digest, vol. No 24, pp. 129 - 165
Du Toit AK, 1999, 'Breaking the Spears: HMAS Tobruk's Involvement in Truce Monitoring Operations in Bougainville', Australian Defence Force Journal: journal of the Australian profession of arms, pp. 33 - 38
Du Toit AK, 1995, 'Australia: A Blue Water Tradition', United States Naval Institute Proceedings, vol. 121/3, pp. 82 - 87
Du Toit AK, 1991, 'Africa South of the Sahara', UNited States Naval Institute Proceedings, vol. 117/3, pp. 126 - 132
Du Toit AK, 1990, 'African Navies South of the Sahara', United States Naval Institute Proceedings, vol. 116/3, pp. 144 - 149
Theses / Dissertations
Du Toit A, 2020, Southern Sentinel: The Anglo-South African Simon’s Town Agreements and the Collective Defence of the Cape Sea Route during the Cold War, 1945-1975
Du Toit AK, 1996, From Cradle to Grave?: The Place of the Aircraft Carrier in Australia's Post-war Defence Force, University of New South Wales