Most people agree that some rules are necessary for markets to work. But what rules do we really need? And how can we make sure they do not become too much of a burden on businesses and consumers?


The Case for a New Australian Settlement: Ruminations of an Inveterate Economist
Wolfgang Kasper
26 June 2015 | OP141

Australia needs a cultural counter-revolution that appeals to the traditional Australian spirit of self-reliance and can-do optimism – a new ‘Australian settlement’ which goes beyond mere economic policy. It should be underpinned by agreed basic understandings across political and social divides: (i) ours is a…

Withholding Dividends: Better ways to make the public sector efficient
Alexander Philipatos
29 May 2014 | T30.10

As the commission of audit has uncovered, the government must make significant cuts to spending to get the budget back into surplus. In the quest to find savings, the government cannot ignore the public service. For almost 25 years the government has turned to the…

Submission to the National Commission of Audit
Alexander Philipatos, Jennifer Buckingham, Jeremy Sammut, Robert Carling, Simon Cowan, Stephen Kirchner, Trisha Jha
01 April 2014 | T30.08

The federal government’s Commission of Audit (CoA) was established in 2013 to review the performance and role of government. This publication is an edited version of the CIS submission to the CoA listing practical solutions aimed at cutting government expenditure. The government should adopt a…

Independent Charities, Independent Regulators: The Future of Not-for-Profit Regulation
Helen Andrews
06 February 2014 | IA143

The Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission was established by the Gillard government in 2012 with the intended purpose of cutting the red tape faced by Australia’s charities. So far, the regulator has failed to make any significant progress on this goal or on its two…

Emergency Budget Repair Kit
Alexander Philipatos, Jennifer Buckingham, Jeremy Sammut, Robert Carling, Simon Cowan, Trisha Jha
21 November 2013 | T30.05

The new Abbott government should address its self-identified budget emergency by cutting wasteful spending now. Reducing government will also help prepare Australia for its future fiscal challenges. There are some simple steps that can move the budget back to surplus in the short term. The…

Media & Commentary

Uber gets green light in ACT
Patrick Carvalho
09 October 2015 | Ideas@TheCentre

From 30 October 2015, the ACT will be Australia’s first jurisdiction — and the first capital in the world — to allow ridesharing business such as Uber to legally operate. The…

4 Corners on Medicare an economics-free zone
David Gadiel
09 October 2015 | Ideas@TheCentre

On 28 September ABC Television screened an episode of its 4 Corners program, hosted by Dr Norman Swan, described as a special report “on the unnecessary testing and treatments choking…

A misguided approach to multinational tax avoidance
Michael Potter
08 October 2015 | Business Spectator

The OECD, the organisation that does research for developed countries, has just released its recommendations on how countries should address tax avoidance by multinationals. It comes under the inspirational name…

No, Australia doesn't have a revenue problem
Michael Potter
02 October 2015 | Ideas@TheCentre

Many commentators think taxes need to increase to ensure the tax-to-GDP ratio is ‘restored’ to historical levels. But their arguments are wrong. The tax-to-GDP ratio is currently well above the…

No, Australia does not have a tax revenue problem
Michael Potter
28 September 2015 | ABC The Drum

It seems plenty of commentators think Australia has a tax revenue problem and we need to increase taxes to ‘restore’ taxes to historical levels. These views are wrong, and this…