February 2009

Making life easier for emitters

by Richard Denniss in Analysis & Policy Observatory

The unfortunate reality is that, having waited a decade for a government to express a willingness to do something about climate change, we are now faced with a choice between a policy that locks us into failure by dictating that emissions in Australia cannot fall by more than five per cent and abandoning the CPRS

January 2009

Sloppy super

by Josh Fear in The Australian

Debates about superannuation policy are often ideological in tone.People in finance and investment circles tend to forget that the majority of Australians are profoundly disengaged from their super, at least until they approach retirement. The super system is so complicated that many workers take the simplest option – doing nothing. Governments therefore have a responsibility

October 2008

In a man’s working world parental leave should be about fathers, too

Originally printed in the Sydney Morning Herald. Under the Productivity Commission’s parental leave proposal, men are entitled to two weeks’ paternity leave (use it or lose it), and mothers would be allowed to transfer their 18-week entitlement to their partners. It leaves the important decision about who provides primary care up to individual families and,

August 2008

June 2008

Credit reform needs to go back to basics

by Josh Fear in ABC The Drum

Recent research by the Australia Institute reveals the extent of community mistrust of the financial sector. Indeed, a large majority of adult Australians hold banks and other financial institutions responsible for the current debt crisis. Although many people believe that personal responsibility in financial decision making is important, there is broad consensus that the banking

May 2008

A borrower nor a lender be

Australia’s love affair with easy credit has turned on itself. The price of credit has reached its highest point in 14 years, and home buyers are feeling the economic pain associated with higher interest rates. The corporate sector has tended to blame individuals for taking on more debt than they can handle, drawing on the

April 2008

Leave accounts: win-win solution to child care

by Jo-anne Schofield in ABC The Drum

Originally printed in ABC News. It’s a good thing for our communities if working parents are able to take time out to spend with children. This should be the guiding principle for the Productivity Commission’s upcoming inquiry into paid maternity, paternity and parental leave. The second principle is to accept that many parents want or

February 2008

January 2008

Don’t Just Rush into Any Old Career

by Clive Hamilton in The Age

The pressures on teenagers today are immense. Many are convinced that their entire lives will be determined by one number ”” their ENTER score. But, many who do not do well at school or university go on to have highly successful careers. And many who perform brilliantly at school and university somehow end up living

September 2007

April 2007

From Bambi To Bimbo

by Emma Rush in Sydney’s Child, Melbourne’s Child, Canberra’s Child, Adelaide’s Child

As parents and professionals who work with children point out, the time and energy that they currently spend in trying to protect children from the advertising and media onslaught (as well as in healing the damage it causes) would be far better spent on the positive aspects of caring for children. In short, if government

March 2007

Adult world must let girls be girls

by Emma Rush in Family Update

Rather than being empowered, children are being exploited by the process of sexualisation. For children seeking to become empowered in an adult world, a more promising route is to focus on developing cognitive and emotional capacities that enable them to negotiate power relations more maturely and with less risk to themselves. There is nothing wrong

February 2007

December 2006

Ice, ice, baby

by Andrew Macintosh in On Line Opinion

Since the early 1900s, Australias drug policies have been based on the notion that the law should be the primary mechanism for addressing drug problems. By prohibiting both the supply and use of certain undesirable drugs, governments thought they could stamp out drug use and drug-related activities. But drug markets have proved remarkably resistant to

November 2006

Sustainability Reporting: How far have we come?

by Andrew Macintosh in New Matilda

Over the last fifteen years, much effort has gone into the preparation of sustainability reports. These are reports that provide information on social and environmental as well as economic matters. This has been done in the name of improved decision making, accountability and transparency. It has also been motivated by a desire to promote ecologically

October 2006

Understanding the retiring kind

by Clive Hamilton and Myra Hamilton in On Line Opinion

The Government argues that encouraging people to work longer is also helping them do something for their own benefit. However, increasing the retirement age is asking people to contribute time at a life stage when time is scarce. For boomers, being compelled to work later means that individuals are giving up something – time –

August 2006

May 2006

Equality of Opportunity: Levelling the Playing Field

by Fred Argy in New Matilda

We drew out the broad elements of an active social strategy targeted at the major barriers to social mobility ”” children’s early development, public infrastructure deficiencies and inequalities of access to employment, health, education, training and housing. If it is to gain public acceptance, such a strategy would need to be preceded by a campaign

April 2006

Has the government been selling out Australia’s children?

by Emma Rush in On Line Opinion

Corporate chains – which now own around a quarter of centres in Australia – offer the lowest quality of care on all indicators surveyed, in some cases markedly lower than that provided by community-based centres. Beyond tightening up the centre accreditation processes, as announced recently, the government should consider offering capital grants to new community-based

March 2006

Why we should give a FCUK about advertising standards

by Clive Hamilton in The Age

Our state and local governments have also been cowed by the cultural and economic momentum of the marketing industry and their squadrons of boosters and lickspittles in the media. In the relentless drive to attract advertisers’ dollars into supporting public facilities and events, the guardians of public morals have lost their way, blinded by the

Tougher drug laws only scratch the surface of the problem

A recent Australia Institute report found that drug strategies should be treatment-orientated so that to ease the punitive burden on users we need to discourage people from using drugs and provide those who do with effective treatment. It also found that drug law enforcement is incapable of putting a significant dent in illicit drug markets,

October 2004

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mail@australiainstitute.org.au

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0457 974 636

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