Government Spending

Governments spend taxpayers’ money on a wide range of programmes from education to defence and from welfare to infrastructure. Yet there can be too much of a good thing, and some government spending is just wasteful. How can we ensure that taxpayers are getting value for money?

Publications

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…

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…

Media & Commentary

When $6.5 billion is a flea bite
Robert Carling
26 August 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

The Turnbull government is correct to put budget repair centre stage for next week’s opening of parliament and put the heat on their opponents over this issue. The focus on…

Shorten’s theory of the mandate falls short
Robert Carling
25 August 2016 | Spectator Flat White

One thing about close election results is that they give rise to a lot of waffle about mandates. The Labor opposition has brought something new to this debate with what…

GST distribution debate fires up again
Robert Carling
19 August 2016 | Business Insider

Once again we’re seeing a blaze of federal vs state and state vs state discussion about the distribution of GST revenue. And no surprise it’s an energetic discussion, because the…

Another day, another tax thought bubble
Michael Potter
19 August 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

You would have thought the government had learned by now how to promote a tax policy. Yet they’re at it again, with Malcolm Turnbull raising, without warning, a proposal to…

Government again rises to its level of incompetence
Simon Cowan
10 August 2016 | Spectator Flat White

Having spent the past few days feverishly reassuring the public the census was going to go off without a hitch, and then pre-emptively declaring it a success, it was almost…