Government and Politics

With a belief in smaller government, The Centre for Independent Studies advocates policies that would limit the size of government in Australia.

In our research, we strive for policies that would reduce regulation and promote a healthy civil society, free of the burdens of big government.

How much government do we really want in Australia? How much government do we really need?

As an independent think tank, the CIS is positioned to seriously analyse the reach of big government, while emphasising freedom, responsibility and enterprise.

Featured Publication

Publications

I, Mechanical Pencil: Why a socialist economy can never work
Steven Kates
06 February 2019 | PP14

Socialism brings poverty and oppression. The ignorance of so many as to why only a market economy is capable of bringing prosperity and political freedom is a major problem. Too many believe a socialist utopia can be achieved if only the right people took the…

Mapping migrants: Australians’ wide-ranging experiences of immigration
Charles Jacobs
05 December 2018 | PP13

Australians’ experiences of immigration are highly varied. Using 2016 ABS Census data, this POLICY Paper finds that – statistically – the wealth of the suburb we live in can have a major impact on the type of interaction we may have with migrants.  These different…

Why we should defend capitalism
Eugenie Joseph
28 November 2018 | PP12

Capitalism has become a controversial idea in recent years; yet economic markets and free enterprise are responsible for lifting millions of people out of abject poverty, improving the quality of life around the world, and creating shared prosperity. Capitalism has also proven effective at sustaining…

Voting for a living: A shift in Australian politics from selling policies to buying votes?
Robert Carling, Terrence O'Brien
05 September 2018 | PP9

This paper explores the hypothesis that growth of government has become self-sustaining through the emergence of a segment of the population that both enjoys sufficient direct support from government and is large enough that political parties shape policies to curry its favour. The researchers use…

Why childcare is not affordable
Eugenie Joseph
29 August 2018 | RR37

Childcare fees and out-of-pocket costs in Australia have been growing above inflation in recent years, at the same time that more parents are using formalised childcare to support their participation in the workforce. Childcare has been subject to growing and evolving regulation for many years,…

Media & Commentary

Living wage is living in the past
Simon Cowan
16 March 2019 | The Sydney Morning Herald

“The old order changeth, yielding place to the new,” progressives cry. Or they would if Tennyson had sufficient diversity points to be included in the modern school curriculum. Yet modern progressivism…

Why Socialism always fails
Steven Kates
15 March 2019 | Spectator

A recent Wall Street Journal editorial Who’s Afraid of Socialism laid out the case that much of the US Democratic platform met the Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of socialism. In particular,…

Principle vs revenue in dividend tax furore
Robert Carling
15 February 2019 | Ideas@TheCentre

The furore over dividend franking credit refunds is bringing out the worst in our politicians. The Coalition is running a parliamentary inquiry that has turned into an endless circus parade…

Labor needs to realise there are no votes in a weak border
Jeremy Sammut, Monica Wilkie
12 February 2019 | The Daily Telegraph

Bill Shorten’s about-face on Wentworth MP Kerryn Phelp’s so-called ‘Medivac’ bill suggested that the penny had dropped and he had woken up to the importance of border protection to the…

Treaty yeah? Nah bro
Leonard Hong
08 February 2019 | Ideas@TheCentre

The Victorian government, having passed legislation to authorise negotiation with Aboriginal Victorians, is advancing towards a formal treaty. Despite the entreaties of activists, the experience of New Zealand suggests a…