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


Fix it or Fail: Why we must cut company tax now
Michael Potter
04 October 2016 | RR20

Australia needs to cut company tax to 25% to boost business investment, which is currently at recessionary levels. An investment boost will grow the economy, leading to increased wages, employment, national income, exports and productivity. Business investment is being hampered by our uncompetitive company tax,…

Submission to Senate Inquiry on Treasury Laws Amendment (Enterprise Tax Plan) Bill 2016
Michael Potter
03 October 2016

The submission by CIS Research Fellow Michael Potter provides a detailed case for a reduction in the company tax rate as contained in the Bill. The submission details the uncompetitive nature of Australia’s company tax system, the benefits of the tax cut, and responses to…

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…

Media & Commentary

Death and taxes (and even more taxes)
Robert Carling
26 October 2016 | The Spectator - Flat White

Australia’s state and federal death taxes (aka estate duties or inheritance taxes) were consigned to the graveyard of abolished taxes in the 1970s, and no major political party has ever…

The ACT votes for spin
Michael Potter
21 October 2016 | The Spectator - Flat White

Apparently, Canberrans have decisively voted for a light rail. At least this is how various commentators have interpreted last weekend’s ACT election result. But a better view is that Canberrans…

ACT's tax reform test case
Robert Carling
21 October 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

Elections for the ACT Legislative Assembly do not normally attract national attention, but the one held last Saturday has done so — in part because the government was returned despite…

Light railroaded
Michael Potter
21 October 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

Well aren’t we glad that we figured that out. Canberrans have decisively voted for a light rail! This is a prominent interpretation of last weekend’s ACT election result. But the…

A company tax cut is cheaper than a stagnating economy
Michael Potter
20 October 2016 | Australian Financial Review

Here’s a bad policy idea. Let’s allow the tax burden on investments to soar to boom levels. And let’s do this when investment is plummeting towards recessionary levels. Near record…