Research Papers

Indigenous Australians And The Criminal Justice System
15 September 2017

Indigenous Australians And The Criminal Justice System

This paper provides an overview of national statistics pertaining to the high level of incarceration of Indigenous Australians and the socioeconomic background to that phenomenon. The paper goes on to consider how to address this issues by applying the traditional criminal justice principles of equal justice, personal responsibility, and fair punishment. National averages are useful for identifying broad trends. However,
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Four Facts about Inequality in Australia
31 August 2017

Four Facts about Inequality in Australia

Our new research brief provides four facts about economic inequality in Australia. Despite the claims, income inequality in Australia is low and decreasing. While wealth inequality has increased slightly over recent years,  wealth in Australia remains the third most evenly distributed in the developed word. The key inequality that matters for public policy is that of opportunity rather than income. A
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The Disappearing Australian Working Man
19 August 2017

The Disappearing Australian Working Man

In Men Without Work: America’s Invisible Crisis, American Enterprise Institute fellow Nicholas Eberstadt takes a close look at the rapidly growing cohort of American men who are out of work. Eberstadt argues that the overemphasis of economists and policy-makers on the official unemployment rate is hiding the true state of joblessness in America. This is because the unemployment rate measures
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Australia’s Criminal Justice Costs: An International Comparison
8 August 2017

Australia’s Criminal Justice Costs: An International Comparison

Incarceration in Australia is growing rapidly. The 2016 adult incarceration rate was 208 per 100,000 adults, up 28 percent from 2006. There are now more than 36,000 prisoners, up 39 percent from a decade ago. The Institute of Public Affairs Criminal Justice Project has investigated the causes of this increase and policy ideas for rationalising the use of prisons in
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Four Reasons To Reject The Referendum Council Recommendations
28 July 2017

Four Reasons To Reject The Referendum Council Recommendations

Our new research brief is on the Four Reasons why the Referendum Council’s recommendations for Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples should be rejected. The proposal to entrench an indigenous ‘voice to parliament’ is a radical idea. Race should not be used as a qualification for participation in democracy. The creation of a constitutional body to exclusively
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Penalising Work – A Historical Account of Penalty Rates in Australia
10 July 2017

Penalising Work – A Historical Account of Penalty Rates in Australia

Penalty rates have been a fixture of Australian industrial relations regimes since the late 1800s. With federation, a series of decisions by various state and federal wage-setting bodies began, culminating in the first ‘national’ penalty rate decision in 1947. These early decisions indicate that penalty rates were imposed not as a compensatory measure for workers for performing weekend work, but
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The South Australian Major Bank Levy: Arbitrary, Unjustified, and Harmful for South Australia And The Rest Of The Country
7 July 2017

The South Australian Major Bank Levy: Arbitrary, Unjustified, and Harmful for South Australia And The Rest Of The Country

In the South Australian state budget 2017-18, South Australian Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis announced that the state government intended to introduce a South Australian Major Bank Levy, one of two revenue measures “to help us meet the cost of our significant support for driving economic growth and creating more jobs”.1 Treasurer Koutsantonis made clear that this levy was explicitly modelled on
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Review Of Climate Change Policies
29 June 2017

Review Of Climate Change Policies

The primary obligation of the Australian government is to serve the Australian people. This means that policies should only be enacted where they are in Australia’s national interest. Unfortunately, the Discussion Paper appears to take it as a given that pursuit of international emissions reduction policies is in Australia’s national interest. However, the drafters of the document have failed to
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Fair Work And The Right To Work
26 June 2017

Fair Work And The Right To Work

The Rudd Government’s 2009 overhaul of Australia’s industrial relations regime represented a substantial reversal of almost two decades of reform. Australia’s trajectory towards decentralised wage-setting directly between employers and employees was arrested in favour of a system with government and trade unions at its core. The reregulation of the labour market by the Fair Work regime (‘Fair Work’) has not
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Five Unanswered Questions From The Finkel Review
14 June 2017

Five Unanswered Questions From The Finkel Review

In the wake of South Australia’s September 2016 blackout, the Council of Australian Governments Energy Council announced the establishment of an ‘expert panel’ chaired by Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel AO to “develop a national reform blueprint to maintain energy security and reliability in the National Electricity Market (NEM).” Download the full research brief here
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