Social Policy

The Centre for Independent Studies remains at the forefront of social policy debate in Australia, with a focus on key issues such as welfare, health care, education and child protection. Ending the growth of the welfare state is a priority for the CIS social research team, as government spending on welfare continues to increase, seemingly unabated.

Since the 1980s, the CIS has been researching social policy issues, with the aim of promoting policies that emphasise personal responsibility and individual choice.

The CIS seeks a future for Australia that has individual freedom under a limited government. We believe that such a future would strengthen community life, leading to a more cohesive and flourishing civil society.

Follow the links for further information on our major social policy areas:

Featured Publication

Publications

The High Court, Democracy and Same Sex Marriage
Barry Maley
19 July 2016 | OP147

The High Court in 2013 overturned the understanding of marriage in the Marriage Act 1961 as an exclusive, voluntary, heterosexual union for life, and that the Constitution therefore allowed the introduction of same sex marriage if the Parliament so decided. It is argued that the…

The Democratic Deficit: How Minority Fundamentalism Threatens Liberty in Australia
Peter Kurti
12 July 2016 | Research Report 16

We are faced with a new kind of fundamentalism – call it ‘minority fundamentalism.’ It has all the features of religious fundamentalism, such as ideological fanaticism, intolerance of dissent, and a Manichaean certainty about truth and falsehood. The goal of the minority fundamentalists is to…

Society is Broken
Theodore Dalrymple
20 June 2016 | OP146

With experience as a prison doctor and psychiatrist, Theodore Dalrymple decries the impact of the welfare state and a culture of dependence in society. A phrase such as ‘a broken society’ should not be made to bear more meaning than it has. Societies do not…

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…

Untangling childcare and family policy
Trisha Jha
05 March 2016

Speech given by CIS Policy Analyst Trisha Jha to the NSW Liberal Party’s Rural and Regional Lunch on Saturday March 5, 2015. Thank you to Tobias and Hollie for inviting me to address you all this afternoon. I’d like to give you a bit of an…

Media & Commentary

Heed Burke on plebiscite
Trisha Jha
28 July 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

Federal Attorney-General finally put to rest doubts about the government’s position on same-sex marriage when he announced that a submission for the mooted plebiscite would go to Cabinet within weeks,…

Marriage deserves a referendum, not a quickie plebiscite
Barry Maley
26 July 2016 | The Australian

Australians are being short-changed and rushed to judgment on same-sex marriage: short-changed because their Constitution has been misinterpreted, and rushed because the politicians want to get it approved by a…

HILDA points to the home
Simon Cowan
22 July 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

The big news from this week’s latest Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey is that the proportion of homeowners is declining, with fewer young people owning homes…

Sonia Kruger, terrorism, and social cohesion
Jeremy Sammut
22 July 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

Banning Muslim immigration — as TV personality Sonia Kruger has urged — would cause more problems than it would solve. It would, at a minimum, violate the first rule of…

Education does not lead to violence
Jennifer Buckingham
15 July 2016 | Ideas@TheCentre

A lot of people who have never been to Aurukun have opinions about its problems; some have even confidently pronounced a link between the long-term and deep-seated social dysfunction in…