General

The CIS examines the roles and responsibilities of commonwealth, state and local governments, the fiscal aspects of federalism and the benefits a federal structure brings to Australia.

Publications

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,…

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…

The History Wars Matter
Jeremy Sammut
08 November 2017 | OP159

Despite what the post-modern theorists claim, the nation remains the ultimate political reality. The power of the national story to inspire our collective beliefs about ourselves as Australians, and for those beliefs to inspire the direction of our national life, is the reason the history…

Media & Commentary

Au pair system works for parents
Eugenie Joseph
14 September 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

Au pairs represent one of the last bastions of unregulated childcare. It is therefore unsurprising to witness the latest round of criticisms of the au pair system. The Peter Dutton…

Buying votes easier than selling good policies
Robert Carling
07 September 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

Does the nature of a democracy change when an increasing majority of its voters receive net benefits from, or are employed by, government — while a diminishing minority shoulders the…

Why you can’t afford childcare
Eugenie Joseph
31 August 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

Childcare is becoming less affordable in Australia, despite billions of dollars in public subsidies — and it is largely due to increasingly stringent regulation. The regulation of childcare under the…

Key issues at heart of political divide
Jeremy Sammut
31 August 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

While it is impossible to separate the political events not only of last week but of the last 10 years from the personalities involved, it is a mistake to ignore…

The storm in the inequality teacup
Robert Carling
31 August 2018 | Ideas@TheCentre

The idea that economic inequality is a problem — and an increasing one — demanding public policy remedies has taken root in Australian political and policy debates. But there is…