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Issue Analysis


Issue Analysis (IA) are shorter publications that deal with controversial and current issues.

  • Are We All Keynesians Again?

    Robert Carling | 12 Feb 2009 | IA106

    The revival of activist fiscal policy ought to be highly controversial because the 1970s and 1980s saw a new consensus emerge that it was ineffective or even damaging. The lessons from that era remain...... Read More

  • Fixing Prices: Why Vouchers Won't Work While Governments Set Fees

    Andrew Norton | 11 Feb 2009 | IA105

    The Bradley report is another chapter in the long story of pricing neglect in higher education. The report should have gone further to solve the financial problems of underfunded universities by deregulating...... Read More

  • Beyond Symbolism: Finding a Place for Local Government in Australia's Constitution

    Oliver Marc Hartwich | 22 Jan 2009 | IA104

    Local governments could provide better services, like schools and fast development approvals if they received a higher proportion of tax revenue and a formal definition in the Constitution.... Read More

  • Making the Grade: School Report Cards and League Tables

    Jennifer Buckingham | 20 Nov 2008 | IA103

    International research shows that students in schools that publish their results publicly perform better than students in schools that do not. It is time for Australian schools to be accountable too.... Read More

  • Million Dollar Babies: Paid Parental Leave and Family Policy Reform

    Jessica Brown | 18 Nov 2008 | IA102

    Support for the introduction of paid parental leave has been so vocal that rather than being a means to an end, paid parental leave has become the end itself. Evidence-based policy has been sidelined...... Read More

  • China’s Insecurity and Search for Power

    John Lee | 13 Nov 2008 | IA101

    Although China feels vulnerable now, there is no doubt that it intends to eventually supersede American power and influence in our region.... Read More

  • Baby Steps Toward Self-Funded Parental Leave

    Jessica Brown | 18 Sep 2008 | IA100

    The debate about increasing the aged pension highlights the fact that, once again, government handouts lead to increasing burdens on taxpayers. When considering a government-funded paid maternity leave...... Read More

  • Government Intervention in Mortgage Finance: The Case Against 'AussieMac'

    Stephen Kirchner | 08 Sep 2008 | IA99

    An Australian GSE and the mortgage securitisation industry would likely expand only at the expense of other financial intermediaries, damaging long-run competition and innovation in the industry.... Read More

  • The Bipolar Pacific

    Helen Hughes AO 1928 - 2013 | 21 Aug 2008 | IA98

    Guest-worker schemes, which have been proposed as a development solution for the Pacific, no doubt benefit the individuals lucky enough to be selected to participate. But even high guest-worker numbers,...... Read More

  • Child Care and the Labour Supply

    Jennifer Buckingham | 23 Jul 2008 | IA97

    This report investigates whether child care is unaffordable and if government funding is contributing to its affordability or making it more expensive.... Read More

  • A Whiff of Compassion? The Attack on Mutual Obligation

    Peter Saunders | 10 Jun 2008 | IA96

    The Rudd government is planning to water down the existing work requirements and mutual obligation policies that have helped unemployed people find jobs.... Read More

  • Putting Democracy in China on Hold

    John Lee | 28 May 2008 | IA95

    Since the 1989 Tiananmen Square protest, China has moved closer to a market economy but further away from a democratic state. The impetus for democracy has been lost over the past two decades.... Read More

  • KiwiSaver or KiwiSucker? A Critical View

    Phil Rennie | 07 May 2008 | IA94

    The promised benefits of KiwiSaver do not match the high cost of the taxpayer subsidies. With KiwiSaver and New Zealand Super combined, it is now possible for a young person on the average wage to retire...... Read More

  • What are Low Ability Workers To Do When Unskilled Jobs Disappear? Part 2

    Peter Saunders | 14 Feb 2008 | IA93

    Despite low unemployment, working-age welfare dependency remains high, partly because demand for unskilled labour is in decline. Instead of more government spending on education and training, we need to...... Read More

  • Five Out of Ten: A Performance Report on the Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI)

    Gaurav Sodhi | 31 Jan 2008 | IA92

    The Solomon Islands is stagnating despite 30 years of aid flows of hundreds of millions of dollars, innumerable consultants’ reports and development pledges. This year will mark the fifth anniversary...... Read More

  • What are Low Ability Workers To Do When Unskilled Jobs Disappear? Part 1

    Peter Saunders | 06 Dec 2007 | IA91

    Nearly two million working-age people are on welfare benefits. The fall in the unemployment figures has disguised a displacement of jobless people into other benefits like the Disability Pension and Parenting...... Read More

  • Why is Australia So Much Richer than New Zealand?

    Phil Rennie | 04 Dec 2007 | IA90

    New Zealand has lower labour productivity, higher income tax, fewer opportunities for capital investment and more sporadic government intervention and regulation than Australia.... Read More

  • Child Care: Who Benefits?

    Jennifer Buckingham | 24 Oct 2007 | IA89

    Child care has gone from something that families would use sparingly and only if necessary to being an alleged human right. The research base of many claims about child care does not support their weight.... Read More

  • Kava and after in the Nhulunbuy (Gulf of Carpenteria) Hinterland

    Helen Hughes AO 1928 - 2013 | 08 Oct 2007 | IA88

    Ending kava sales will have positive effects only if the factors that make the Nhulunbuy hinterland dysfunctional are tackled. If underlying deprivation is not ended, alcohol and drugs are likely to replace...... Read More

  • Taming New Zealand’s Tax Monster

    Phil Rennie | 15 May 2007 | IA87

    New Zealanders now pay an extra $20 billion per year in tax than they did in 2000. There needs to be a proper review of government spending to assess its value for money, and effectively determine the...... Read More