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


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,…

What the Gonski 2 Review got wrong
Jennifer Buckingham, Blaise Joseph
17 June 2018 | PP6

The Gonski 2 Review into Australian schools failed to fulfill its terms of reference to examine the evidence regarding the most effective teaching and learning strategies, and to provide advice on how the extra federal government funding for schools should be used to improve student…

Defending the Dual Citizen Ban
Simon Cowan
31 May 2018 | PP3

The High Court has rightfully resisted calls to read subjective elements into section 44(i) in order to keep the current crop of ineligible politicians in their seats. This interpretation is seen as harsh, but is based on sound legal principle and a common sense interpretation…

Red tape and Australia’s economic malaise
Michael Potter
07 February 2018 | OP164

Australia is in a period of economic malaise. GDP per person has been growing slowly ever since the GFC. Australia’s performance is mediocre compared to other developed countries; by contrast, we outperformed before the GFC. Household incomes and wages are also growing at slow rates,…

Media & Commentary

Blue wave not a wipeout
Tom Switzer
09 November 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

This week was the American electorate’s first opportunity to render a national verdict on Trump’s presidency. Turnout and enthusiasm were high, but the results were mixed: although the Democrats have…

Blue wave fails to wipe out Republicans
Tom Switzer
08 November 2018 | ASPI Strategist

Not so long ago, the media consensus was that the Democrats would ride a ‘wave’ akin to the Republican routs in 1994 and 2010. Back then, the party under Bill…

Petrol prices pump up interventionist calls
Charles Jacobs
02 November 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

One by one, Australia’s markets are falling victim to the hand of an interventionist government. The energy sector — for years the focus of political meddling — has in recent…

There are dangers in reading too much into a big swing in Wentworth
Tom Switzer
20 October 2018 | The Sydney Morning Herald

Byelections have often been bad news for governments. That is why they have learned to avoid them. Huge swings against the party in power have ultimately led to defeat in…

Does inequality matter?
Simon Cowan
05 October 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

This week we hosted an interesting discussion on inequality (see video). CIS Senior Fellow Robert Carling argued inequality is actually an integral part of a market economy, because the incentive…

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