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Occasional Papers


Occasional Papers (OP) are short publications usually based on a lecture or presentation given at the CIS. Our annual John Bonython and Acton Lectures are part of the OP series.

  • After the Welfare State: Politicians Stole Your Future … You Can Get It Back

    08 Apr 2013 | OP132

    History, economics, sociology, political science, and mathematics are the tools to understand and evaluate welfare states, rather than emotional responses or conspiracy theories. This little book, edited... Read More

  • Re-moralising the Welfare State

    13 Mar 2013 | OP131

    The welfare state should be fair as well as caring. Fairness requires that claimants are not treated more favourably than people who work; that more deserving cases are treated differently from less deserving... Read More

  • Capitalism and Virtue: Reaffirming Old Truths

    07 Feb 2013 | OP130

    In the 2012 Annual John Bonython Lecture, eminent political scientist Charles Murray describes the larger historical forces that have been at work in the United States (and, to a lesser extent, Australia)... Read More

  • The Power and the Responsibility: Child Protection in the Post-Welfare State Era

    Jeremy Sammut | 08 Sep 2010 | OP117

    Government-run child protection services in Australia are plagued by systemic problems, including a misguided emphasis on family preservation. This paper examines the cultural, political and ideological... Read More

  • Declaring Dependence, Declaring Independence: Three Essays on the Future of the Welfare State

    Peter Saunders | 01 Aug 2008 | OP111

    In a time when governments are running up enormous welfare bills and intrusively regulating everyday life, this series of essays remind us that many people do not need to rely on the government to survive. Read More

  • A Self-Reliant Australia. Welfare Policy for the 21st century

    Peter Saunders | 16 Mar 2003 | OP86

    In this paper Peter Saunders suggests that the time has come to turn back the growth of this expensive, damaging, demeaning and largely unnecessary welfare state behemoth Read More

  • The Social Foundations of a Free Society

    Peter Saunders | 12 Feb 2002 | OP79

    A look at five main areas where current trends may be eroding the free society - family life, schooling, community relations, the welfare state, and the values, norms and beliefs that comprise our common... Read More

  • Reconnecting Compassion and Charity

    Roger Kerr | 01 Jan 1999 | OP67

    Supporters of big government and the welfare state regularly accuse their opponents of lacking ‘compassion’. But how much have they thought about what compassion really involves? And how do they reconcile... Read More

  • Democracy and the Welfare State

    Kenneth Minogue | 01 Sep 1997 | OP61

    The welfare state has now been experienced by several generations. In this Occasional Paper, Professor Kenneth Minogue looks at some of its effects on the character of Western states and societies. The... Read More

  • Civic Capitalism- An Australian Agenda for Institutional Renewal

    Nick Greiner | 01 May 1995 | OP54

    A new political middle ground is forming around the idea that successful societies depend on ‘social capital’- the goodwill, trust and sense of mutual obligation that underpin co-operation and community.... Read More

  • The Social Roots of Prosperity

    Brigette Berger | 01 May 1995 | OP55

    A society’s prosperity depends on its families. That is the central message of Brigitte Berger’s analysis of economic an and political success. Read More

  • From Welfare State to Welfare Society

    Michael James | 01 Jul 1992 | OP38

    The legitimacy of the welfare state has survived the shift in recent years towards smaller government and a greater role for individual initiative and enterprise in the economy.  Michael James argues... Read More

  • Equalising People: Why Social Justice Threatens Liberty

    David Green | 01 Dec 1991 | OP37

    In this Occasional Paper, David Green challenges the pursuit of social justice on three grounds: It is based on a shallow and materialistic conception of human nature that ignores unpriced and unrewarded... Read More

  • The Long Debate on Poverty

    R.M. Hartwell | 10 May 1988 | OP21

    In The Long Debate on Poverty, Professor Hartwell analyses the debate on poverty and its historical roots; demonstrates the remarkable similarity between earlier and modern discussions on the subject;... Read More

  • Social Welfare: The Changing Debate

    David Green | 05 May 1988 | OP20

    David D. Green’s monograph Social Welfare: The Changing Debate, summarises the research findings and arguments of several recent studies of welfare dependency. Read More

  • The Rhetoric and Reality of Income Redistribution

    Gordon Tullock | 25 Sep 1981 | OP5

    In this survey of a variety of aspects of income redistribution, Gordon Tullock asks not that we should necessarily change our behaviour, but that we should at least speak the truth about what we are doing. Read More