John Roskam

Senior Fellow

John Roskam is a Senior Fellow at the Centre for the Australian Way of Life at the Institute of Public Affairs. He served as Executive Director of the Institute of Public Affairs from 2005 to 2022. Before joining the IPA he taught political theory at the University of Melbourne. He was previously the Executive Director of The Menzies Research Centre in Canberra, has been a senior adviser and chief of staff to federal and state education ministers, and was the manager of government and corporate affairs for a global mining company.

His publications include Australia's Education Choices (with Professor Brian Caldwell), 'Terrorism and Poverty' in Blaming Ourselves, 'Liberalism and Social Welfare' in Liberalism and the Australian Federation, and 'The Liberal Party and the Great Split' in The Split Fifty Years Later.

His fortnightly column appears in The Australian Financial Review. He is a member of the Editorial Board of The Australian Journal of Public Administration, and Connor Court Publishing, and the Advisory Board of The Centre for Advanced Journalism at the University of Melbourne. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Public Administration, Australia in Victoria, and is an Honorary Fellow of Campion College.

Voice Loss Heralds Labor’s Third Great Split
19 October 2023

Voice Loss Heralds Labor’s Third Great Split

In this article, John Roskam contextualises and disseminates the findings of the IPA’s research into the Voice to Parliament. The IPA has been researching the consequences a potential Voice to Parliament would have to the political freedom, liberty, and equality of Australians since the Uluru Statement of the Heart was first being drafted. Two earlier schisms divided the parliamentary party.
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Bran Black Has The Hardest Job In Australia
5 October 2023

Bran Black Has The Hardest Job In Australia

In this article, John Roskam contextualises and disseminates the findings of the IPA’s research into the growth of red tape in Australia, and how that affects Australian businesses. The new boss of the lobby group for big business is described as “Mr Nice Guy”, but that will do nothing to push back against the government’s enthusiasm for drowning business in
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Such Is Politics: Josh Frydenberg Departs As Jacinta Price Arrives
26 September 2023

Such Is Politics: Josh Frydenberg Departs As Jacinta Price Arrives

In this article, John Roskam contextualises and disseminates the findings of the IPA’s research into the Voice to Parliament. The IPA has been researching the consequences a potential Voice to Parliament would have to the political freedom, liberty, and equality of Australians since the Uluru Statement of the Heart was first being drafted. Such is politics. One potential prime minister
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Game’s up for Qantas’ Canberra Crony Capitalism
7 September 2023

Game’s up for Qantas’ Canberra Crony Capitalism

As a Coalition MP quipped a few days ago – “the federal government once owned Qantas. Now it’s Qantas that owns the federal government.” Which isn’t bad for a company barely among the country’s biggest 40 corporations and one that’s less than a 20th the size of BHP. The political power and cultural influence of Qantas is a tribute to
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Labor Is boiling The Frog Of Higher Taxes
24 August 2023

Labor Is boiling The Frog Of Higher Taxes

If you wanted to increase taxes you’d do it precisely the way the government is doing it. Bit by bit, step by step, avoiding anything that looks remotely “big bang” or Whitlamesque. Hopefully the ABC is wrong. According to its political correspondent the Intergenerational Report is “one of the most important documents that will help shape public policy for decades to come”.
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Big Business Has Lost Its Voice In Debate On Economic Reform
10 August 2023

Big Business Has Lost Its Voice In Debate On Economic Reform

CEOs today are more likely to adopt social causes than policy agendas and have opinions more in common with a typical cadet journalist at the ABC than with Milton Friedman. Here’s a question. If you were Matt Comyn, the Commonwealth Bank chief executive who’s just announced a record profit of $10 billion, and whose pay has gone up 50 per cent
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‘Woke-washing’ Has Real Consequences
27 July 2023

‘Woke-washing’ Has Real Consequences

It’s difficult to spot the difference between what Coutts did to the Brexit leader and what the Commonwealth Bank does to coal miners. What NatWest bank in the UK and its boss Alison Rose did to Nigel Farage has proved a headline from Time magazine a few years ago to be absolutely wrong. According to Time, “Cancel culture is not real – at least
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Live Not By Lies
20 July 2023

Live Not By Lies

Australian institutions are so hostile to freedom that telling the truth is an act of resistance For too long, Australians committed to freedom have consoled themselves, believing that while their condition is desperate, it’s not yet serious. As Christians lose their jobs, as Liberal and Labor governments embrace government censorship of our speech and opinions, and as the heritage that’s
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Andrews Calculated Only Political Cost Of Scrapping Commonwealth Games
18 July 2023

Andrews Calculated Only Political Cost Of Scrapping Commonwealth Games

In this article, John Roskam contextualises and disseminates the findings of the IPA’s research into Victoria’s level of national debt and how that affects Victoria’s economic freedom and prosperity. The IPA has been dedicated to preserving and strengthening the foundations of economic freedom through research and analysis since its inception in 1943. Regardless of the cost overruns, if the state
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Not All Royal Commissions Are Equal
13 July 2023

Not All Royal Commissions Are Equal

The media are a lot more interested in scandals like robo-debt under a Coalition government than in Lawyer X under a Labor government in Victoria. The last few weeks have been the tale of two royal commissions. Last week in Canberra the report of the robo-debt scheme inquiry was released. It continues to dominate the political news as its “sealed chapter” recommends
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