February 2022

Coalition Budget Cuts Cost ABC Half a Billion Dollars, 640 Jobs

New figures reveal ABC funding has been cut by $526 million since the Coalition took office, with 640 jobs lost. The figures were obtained from the ABC which was asked to provide details on ‘budget reductions’ since the Coalition Government’s first budget in 2013/14, in a QoN at Senate Estimates. Polling from the Australia Institute’s

January 2022

Polling: Vast Majority of Wentworth & North Sydney Voters Want More Funding for ABC

New Australia Institute polling in the federal seats of Wentworth and North Sydney show strong support for the ABC. The polling in the blue-ribbon Liberal seats in NSW shows overwhelming support for increasing ABC funding and for a more independent ABC board appointments process. 853 residents of NSW federal seat of Wentworth and 850 residents

Banning Political Donations a Positive Step for Democracy in SA: Australia Institute

The South Australian Labor Party’s commitment to abolishing political donations after the upcoming state election is a positive step for SA that would help to restore trust in politics at a critical time, the Australia Institute has said. “If implemented well, these reforms could revolutionise politics in South Australia and become a template for other

December 2021

Mayo Polling: Landslide Support for Key Integrity and Accountability Measures

New Australia Institute polling in the South Australian seat of Mayo shows strong support for a federal anti-corruption watchdog with teeth, truth in political advertising laws for Australia and greater integrity in the process of awarding government grants. Over 800 people were polled in the seat of Mayo on the evening of the 13th December

New Initiative Launched to Protect Charities Advocacy as New Poll Finds Majority of Australians Agree Advocacy a Key Part of Charity Work

A new initiative to protect charities advocacy has been launched today as new polling finds the majority of Australians agree advocacy is a key part of charity work. The initiative calls for the Parliament to repeal these laws, which have been imposed on the charity sector – a sector which makes an estimated $129 billion

Irrigator and environment groups unite to protect Murray Darling

An unprecedented alliance of irrigation representatives and environment peak bodies have called on the NSW Premier, Treasurer and Environment Minister to oversee changes to Murray Darling water rules. The groups include representatives of a majority of NSW irrigators and the environmental peak bodies of all Basin states. The practice of diverting floodwater, known as floodplain

The Public Square Project: Reimagining Our Digital Future

A new book from the Australia Institute’s Centre for Responsible Technology, published by MUP and released today, The Public Square Project: Reimagining Our Digital Future explores a new blueprint for a more democratic digital space, and re-examines the idea of a public space where people gather to share ideas, mediate difference and make sense of

November 2021

Big Winners of $3.9b in Government Discretionary Grants are Coalition Marginal Seats

New analysis from the Australia Institute’s Democracy & Accountability Program reveals that $3.9 billion spent by federal grants programs with ministerial discretion has clearly skewed towards marginal Coalition seats in particular, at the expense of safe Labor seats and, to a lesser extent, safe Coalition seats. Marginal Coalition seats received on average $184 per person

Amazon’s Big Friday a Black Day for Worker Rights

The Australia Institute’s Centre for Responsible technology today called on Amazon to mark its global marketing day, Black Friday, by ditching patents to increase the surveillance of its workers. According to an analysis by UNI Global, Amazon currently have patents on a range of technologies that will erode workplace privacy including: Augmented reality headsets that

Active Policy Measures Needed to Stop Decline of Journalism

The media and information industries have lost some 60,000 jobs in Australia over the last 15 years. With almost half of those jobs lost during the COVID-19 pandemic, new research shows active policy supports are urgently needed to stabilise and protect the ‘public good’ function of journalism. A new report by the Australia Institute’s Centre

October 2021

On Eve of Federal Election, Government Looks to Disenfranchise Voters While Ignoring Long-Overdue Democracy Reforms

Key details: The Morrison Government has introduced a bill to Parliament to change the requirements for voters, to show identification on polling day. This is a well-used tactic to disenfranchise voters – particularly young voters, Indigenous voters, and voters with no fixed address. The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) has previously described multiple voting as “by

Parliament’s Chance to Pass a Federal Integrity Commission with Teeth

The National Integrity Committee welcomes the tabling in the Senate today by Senator Rex Patrick of Helen Haines’ Australian Federal Integrity Commission Bill to establish a Federal Integrity Commission. Recent events have highlighted the urgent need for a well-designed commission, with the powers of a standing royal commission and with safeguards against misuse of those

Accountability Failure: Executive Government’s Unchecked Power to send Australians to War

New research has revealed a fundamental failure in accountability surrounding the process of how Australia decides to engage in armed conflict overseas. In Australia, the decision to engage in armed conflict is taken by the Executive government without reference to the Parliament. Research by The Australia Institute’s Democracy & Accountability and Security & International Affairs

Facebook Should Face Royal Commission into its Online Harms

The Australia Institute’s Centre for Responsible Technology has backed Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce’s proposal for a high-level review of the public health impacts of Facebook’s business model, calling for a Royal Commission into the company’s impact on Australian users. Evidence from an internal whistleblower to the US Senate this week has exposed how Facebook’s leadership

Tasmanian Government Must Go Further to Make Elections Fairer

The Tasmanian Government’s proposals to make political donations and election spending more transparent are a step in the right direction, but the new laws do not go far enough. The legislation still leaves Tasmania with the weakest regulation of third-party campaigners, such as industry lobby groups, of any state or territory in Australia. The proposed

Statement from the National Integrity Committee Regarding Changes to the South Australian Independent Commission Against Corruption

The National Integrity Committee is deeply concerned about the recent changes made by the South Australian Parliament to the Independent Commissioner Against Corruption Act 2012. As we all well know corruption in public office is insidious, well hidden, and erodes trust in our public institutions. We unreservedly endorse the need to ensure that reputations are

September 2021

Key Accountability Committee Calls for Charity Regulations to be Scrapped

The Australia Institute has welcomed the Senate Committee for the Scrutiny of Delegated Legislation decision to recommend that the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission Amendment (2021 Measures No. 2) Regulations 2021 be disallowed. The Committee, chaired by Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, outlined concerns which include that the regulation lacks clarity, would give the Charities Commissioner a

Government Must Now Act on ACCC Call to Regulate Google’s Advertising Power

The Federal Government should move urgently to implement the recommendations of a new ACCC report into the monopoly dominance of Google in the advertising. The Australia Institute’s Centre for Responsible Technology said understanding and regulating the hidden power of Google to collect and combine user data from multiple sources was a critical piece in addressing the

Victorian Electoral Matters Committee Recommend Adoption of Truth in Political Advertising Laws

The Australia Institute’s Democracy & Accountability Program welcomes the Victorian Electoral Matters Committee’s recommendation for Victoria to adopt truth in political advertising laws, with the Australia Institute’s submission to the inquiry cited extensively in the committee report published today. Key Facts: Since March 2020, the Victorian Parliament’s Electoral Matters Committee has looked into the impact

Economists welcome end of native forest logging in WA

The Australia Institute welcomes the WA Government’s decision to end native forest logging and calls for independent inquiries into native forestry in other states. “The end of native forest logging represents not just good environmental policy, but good economic policy,” said Rod Campbell, economist and Research Director at The Australia Institute. “Australia Institute research has

Australian Government Breaking Promise on Mining Tax Transparency

Correspondence between Resource Minister Keith Pitt and civil society groups involved in the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) shows that the Australian Government is walking away from its promise to join the tax transparency initiative for the mining, oil and gas industry. The move comes despite major mining companies and civil society groups supporting Australia’s

Landslide Support for Commonwealth Integrity Commission with Public Hearings and Whistle-blower Complaint Capability

The Australia Institute commissioned uComms to conduct a survey of residents across the federal electorates of Brisbane (622 residents), Braddon (632 residents), Boothby (641 residents) and Bennelong (629 residents) on the nights of 4th and 5th of August 2021. Key Findings: Seat of Brisbane – 78.2% of Brisbane voters support setting up a Commonwealth Integrity

August 2021

Party registration changes unfair to small parties, too restrictive

New electoral laws proposed by the Government will have unintended consequences and unfairly benefit incumbent political parties, warns the Australia Institute’s Democracy & Accountability Program. The Electoral Legislation Amendment (Party Registration Integrity) Bill would require political parties to have 1,500 unique members each within the next three months, up from 500, and prohibit new parties

Polling: Majority want video-on-demand services to put 20% of revenue toward Australian content

Three in five (60%) Australian’s support requiring subscription-video-on-demand (SVOD) services, like Netflix, Stan and Amazon Prime, to spend at least 20% of their revenue on Australian content, finds new research by the Australia Institute. The Australia Institute surveyed 1,006 people in March and 1,000 in May 2021 through Dynata, with nationally representative samples by gender,

July 2021

When the Show Cannot Go On: Rebooting Australia’s Arts & Entertainment Sector After COVID-19

New research from the Australia Institute’s Centre for Future Work, written by Senior Economist Alison Pennington and Monash University’s Ben Eltham, reveals the ongoing, devastating impact of COVID-19 on Australia’s arts and entertainment sector and provides a series of recommendations to government that would reboot the creative sector following the crisis. Key Findings: The arts

New Analysis: The Critical Role of the States in COVID-19 and Beyond

Australia’s states and territories have taken the lead in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic, representing a potential re-alignment of state-federal relations, according to new research by the Australia Institute’s Democracy & Accountability Program. Polling shows that the proportion of Australians who rate their state/territory government as doing a better job of handling the crisis has reached

Coalition Policies Will Not Improve Productivity According to Treasury

New analysis of the Intergenerational Report reveals Treasury does not believe that any of the policies introduced by the Coalition Government in the last six years will have any measurable impact on Australia’s productivity growth in the coming decades. Key Findings: The latest Intergenerational Report (IGR 2021) reveals that the Treasury Department is more pessimistic

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