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.

A Wake-up Call For Economic Liberals
20 October 2022

A Wake-up Call For Economic Liberals

This article was originally published in The Australian Financial Review on or about 20 October 2022 and was written by the author in their capacity as a contributor for that publication. It has been republished on the IPA website with permission. The views expressed are those of the author alone. It’s foolish to claim the destruction of Liz Truss is the best thing
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Thorburn’s Cancelling Shows Politics Is Now Football’s Main Game
6 October 2022

Thorburn’s Cancelling Shows Politics Is Now Football’s Main Game

This article was originally published in The Australian Financial Review on or about 6 October 2022 and was written by the author in their capacity as a contributor for that publication. It has been republished on the IPA website with permission. The views expressed are those of the author alone. The AFL prides itself on being a cultural and workplace leader – and
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Stage Three Tax Cut Debate Will Be Cancelled
22 September 2022

Stage Three Tax Cut Debate Will Be Cancelled

This article was originally published in The Australian Financial Review on or about 22 September 2022. In the article, John Roskam explained the consequences of the Stage Three Tax Cut in the context of the findings of the IPA’s research into Australia’s level of national debt and how that affects Australia’s economic freedom and prosperity. Labor running a ‘big national
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Kelty Puts Politics First, Good Policy Second
8 September 2022

Kelty Puts Politics First, Good Policy Second

This article was originally published in The Australian Financial Review on or about 8 September 2022 and was written by the author in their capacity as a contributor for that publication. It has been republished on the IPA website with permission. The views expressed are those of the author alone. Bill Kelty is a political genius. But his ideas are grounded in the
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To Stop Pork-barrelling, Confiscate The Pork
25 August 2022

To Stop Pork-barrelling, Confiscate The Pork

Handing power to public servants won’t fix the problem of politically targeted grants. Governments should do less and spend less. There’s a certain irony in a think tank established with a $30 million taxpayer-funded grant from state and federal Labor governments issuing a report criticising Coalition government “pork-barrelling”. That’s the difference between Labor in power and the Coalition in office.
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State Liberals’ Integrity Blues Are Of Their Own Making
11 August 2022

State Liberals’ Integrity Blues Are Of Their Own Making

The travails of Dominic Perrottet and Matthew Guy show that if the public’s imagination is not captured by politicians’ policies, something else will get voters’ attention. What former US secretary of state Dean Acheson said about Britain in 1962, if adapted slightly, could apply to the Liberal Party in NSW and Victoria – and, for that matter, in every other
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If Only The Coalition Knew How To Govern Like Labor
28 July 2022

If Only The Coalition Knew How To Govern Like Labor

The ALP knows how to impose its agenda. Meanwhile, the sanguine Liberals are trusting in luck for government to land back in their lap. Full credit to Anthony Albanese and the Labor Party. They have a bare two-seat majority after an election in which they received 4,776,030 primary votes in the lower house, which is 32.6 per cent of all first preferences.
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Liberals Should Choose Their Leader The Way The Tories Do
15 July 2022

Liberals Should Choose Their Leader The Way The Tories Do

It’s an exciting time to be a Tory in Britain. The contest to be Conservative Party leader and prime minister started with a dozen potential candidates. This was reduced to eight who stood in the first round of voting by the 358 Tory MPs (270 men and 88 women).  That number is now down to six, following the elimination of
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So, What Makes Australia A home?
30 June 2022

So, What Makes Australia A home?

Democracy, the rule of law and freedom of speech might all be ideals originating in Europe, but the legacy of the history and tradition of “the West” is today in Australia either ignored or cancelled. Never has it been more important for Australians to have a sense of their nation’s identity and purpose, yet such a sense is now almost
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Net Zero Will Be The New Zero-COVID
16 June 2022

Net Zero Will Be The New Zero-COVID

The energy crisis should prompt Peter Dutton to ditch the 2050 emission target that, like eliminating the virus, no one will ever admit to supporting in a few years time. Eventually, net zero will be akin to the COVID-19 lockdowns. Just as one day no one will ever admit to having supported lockdowns, people will say “net zero? What was that?” And
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