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.

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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Business Has Gone Woke – So Libs Should Focus On Dandenong Not Davos
2 June 2022

Business Has Gone Woke – So Libs Should Focus On Dandenong Not Davos

Peter Dutton was right to dismiss corporate Australia as being more in step with Labor and the Greens. The automatic and close relationship between the centre-right of politics and big business is over. Anthony Albanese’s election victory has prompted all sorts of interesting reactions. Apparently, company boards should now start purging their ranks of “right-wingers”. That’s the view of Graeme Bricknell of
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The Liberal Party Lost By Standing For Nothing
24 May 2022

The Liberal Party Lost By Standing For Nothing

Rather than pander to a loud and privileged elite in teal seats, the Liberal Party must start asking itself what it believes in and seeking support for policies that reflect those beliefs. If its behaviour in the three days since it lost the 2022 federal election is anything to go by, the Liberal Party is going to spend the next few years
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Liberal ‘Broad Church’ Is Now An Inter-faith Dialogue
12 May 2022

Liberal ‘Broad Church’ Is Now An Inter-faith Dialogue

Robert Menzies didn’t start the Liberal Party to fight for the forgotten people living in harbour mansions. In a speech he made when he was prime minister, John Howard famously described the Liberal Party as a “broad church”, accommodating the political traditions of both classical liberalism and conservatism. Subject to some minor qualifications Howard’s analysis was accurate. But that was
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Censorship Is The Real Threat To Twitter, Not Elon Musk
28 April 2022

Censorship Is The Real Threat To Twitter, Not Elon Musk

If politicians around the world have their way, it won’t be the owner of the company deciding what can be said on the platform but state social media censors. This week Elon Musk bought Twitter for $US44 billion ($62 billion). Depending on the day-to-day fluctuations of Tesla’s share price, the world’s richest person, the 50-year old Musk, is worth at least $US200
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Why It’s No Contest On The Economy
18 April 2022

Why It’s No Contest On The Economy

The ALP of the 2020s has lost interest in Australia’s economic future. And the Coalition appears to be following suit. It says a great deal about the condition of Australian policy and politics that the biggest story of the first week of the 2022 federal election campaign was Labor leader Anthony Albanese’s inability to name the level of unemployment and
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Fighting The Free Money Syndrome
31 March 2022

Fighting The Free Money Syndrome

Tesla drivers, the Morrison government and the Reserve Bank are united by the same idea. That it does not really matter where money comes from. It is a strange world we live in, if when the government cuts taxes on a product it is accused of giving it a “subsidy”. But this is exactly what’s happened after this year’s federal
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Kitching Wasn’t Just Bullied – She Was A Victim Of Cancel Culture
17 March 2022

Kitching Wasn’t Just Bullied – She Was A Victim Of Cancel Culture

The treatment meted out to Kimberley Kitching by some of her Labor “colleagues” was on any definition bullying, nasty and completely unfair. But that’s politics – politics, like life, is unfair. But certainly, what happened to Kitching Kimberley Kitching at a Senate estimates hearing in 2019. Alex Ellinghausen was particularly vicious and the labelling of some of the perpetrators of
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