Social Policy – The Centre for Independent Studies

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


Parents’ perspectives on home-based learning in the covid-19 pandemic
Glenn Fahey, Blaise Joseph
30 September 2020 | AP15

School closures during the covid-19 pandemic temporarily shifted schooling from the classroom to the home. This paper provides an insight into parents’ perspectives of this experience of home-based learning. The research shows parents have a wide range of views on how, how often, and how…

Australia, the United States and China in a post-Covid world
Richard Alston
14 September 2020 | OP175

After three decades of prosperity and relative peace, Australia suddenly confronts a trifecta of crises: a pandemic, a recession, and a radically changed strategic outlook. In these circumstances, Australia must adapt quickly, always putting its interests first and being prepared to lead when necessary. Notwithstanding…

Cancelled! How ideological cleansing threatens Australia
Peter Kurti
17 August 2020 | AP13

‘Cancel culture’ campaigns in Australia are intended to erase elements of our history and to deny the record of those who helped found this country. The impulse to impose a revised interpretation of the past poses a danger that threatens to corrode civility, destroy civic…

Industrial Relations in a Post-COVID World
Judith Sloan
13 August 2020 | AP12

The economic shocks of COVID-19 and the associated government responses have rendered aspects of our industrial relations regulations unworkable and/or perverse. While the system of regulation was initially a federated role in which the states played significant roles, the federal jurisdiction is now dominant. Apart…

Moral Terrorism
Simon Heffer
21 July 2020 | OP174

We find ourselves living in an age when a small but highly vocal, and zealous, minority are availing themselves of the power of social media, and of sections of the printed press, to seek to force their opinions and attitudes on everyone else. In normal…

Media & Commentary

Channel past generations’ stoicism
Tom Switzer
22 January 2021 | Ideas@theCentre

We all know 2020 will go down as a terrible year: a global pandemic with lives lost, a government-induced recession to fight the virus, enormous debt and deficits, business uncertainty,…

Virtue signalling does nothing to make lives of indigenous Australians safer
Jacinta Nampijinpa Price
21 January 2021 | Daily Telegraph

Right now the lives and wellbeing of all Australians depends on a unified nation, and Australia Day is more important than ever. In Abraham Lincoln’s words: “a house divided against…

Make no mistake, our society needs vaccine urgently
Steven Schwartz
07 January 2021 | The Australian

Where is Australia’s COVID-19 vaccine? Britain, Bahrain, the US, Denmark, Russia, Germany, Canada, China, Italy, Estonia, Croatia, Spain, Argentina, Mexico and France have all started vaccinating healthcare workers, the elderly…

Vigilance about liberty still needed
Peter Kurti
18 December 2020 | Ideas@theCentre

Family members stranded overseas are going to miss out; and now it’s suddenly got harder for the rest of us. Until just a few days ago, Christmas this year looked…

Euthanasia bill a tragedy
Peter Kurti
16 December 2020 | DAILY TELEGRAPH

Even as experts fret about the impact of Covid-19 on the mental health of the vulnerable, with a possible spike in suicides, greater access to voluntary death is spreading gradually…