Economic Policy

The Centre for Independent Studies is guided by the philosophy of free markets and individual responsibility. Our economic policy research centres on ideas that will strengthen Australia’s economy for the future and challenge the reach of big government. With ongoing uncertainty for economies around the world, the CIS’ research into financial and monetary issues is more vital than ever in helping shape public policy.

Continuing economic reform is desperately needed in Australia, and that is why our TARGET30 program seeks to reduce waste in government and in the public sector, and to bring government spending under control.

For more information on our economic research, please proceed to:

Featured Publication


Mapping the Indigenous Program and Funding Maze
Sara Hudson
23 August 2016 | Research Report 18

There is much goodwill in Australia to improve Indigenous outcomes. However, too many programs are implemented because of their perceived benefit, rather than a rigorous assessment of what works. This research report maps the number of government and non-government Indigenous programs and potential level of…

The Role of Think Tanks: A Reply to the Critics
Jeremy Sammut
13 June 2016 | OP145

Because their aims are educational and democratic, what think tanks do and why they do it is entirely transparent: they ensure their research is publically available and seek to ensure it is disseminated via the media to as broad an audience as possible in the…

The case against tax increases in Australia: The growing burden
Michael Potter
07 June 2016 | Research Report 15

View Interactive Snapshot The tax burden imposed by the Commonwealth Government alone, and by all Australian governments, is above its historical levels and forecast to go well above these averages. Similar results are obtained if the budget deficit is included to measure the long-run tax…

MEDI-VALUE: Health Insurance and Service Innovation in Australia - Implications for the Future of Medicare
Jeremy Sammut
20 April 2016 | Research Report 14

For healthcare innovation to flourish there needs to be a real market for health services in Australia. Providers that deliver cost-effective, patient-centred care should be rewarded for increased efficiency and lower costs by being able to sell that value-proposition to cost-and quality-conscious purchasers. For innovation…

Investor-State Arbitration and the Rule of Law: Debunking the Myths
Patrick Carvalho
13 April 2016 | Research Report 13

Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) is a legal provision in international agreements that enables foreign investors to take host states to an arbitral tribunal for alleged treaty breaches. The goal of investor-state arbitration is to provide a de-politicised, unbiased and law-based adjudication forum to guarantee the…

Media & Commentary

Effective child protection requires rigorously evaluated models
Trisha Jha
21 September 2016 | The Australian

The Turnbull government is focusing on early intervention, but overlooking what’s needed for it to succeed. There is commitment to ‘prevention through early intervention’ through reform of the welfare system…

Cut company tax like we did tariffs
Michael Potter
16 September 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

Senior officials from the Australian Treasury have stated that company tax is similar to a tax on imports of foreign capital. They argue Australia has benefited from tariff cuts and we…

What’s worse? Dasher’s donation or being bribed with your own money?
Simon Cowan
06 September 2016 | Spectator Flat White

Whatever you think of Sam Dastyari — he of halal snack pack and Senate committee inquiry fame — the issue of private donations to political parties is bigger than just…

The Productivity Commission’s schools fail
Jennifer Buckingham
06 September 2016 | Spectator Flat White

The Productivity Commission’s draft report into the evidence base for education confirms there has been little improvement in student outcomes despite substantial increases in expenditure over the last decade —…

The problem with superannuation reform
Simon Cowan
02 September 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

Both parties took substantial superannuation reform packages to the last election. Unfortunately both packages had the same failing: they focused primarily on how to generate more revenue, not how to…