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The world’s scientists have warned that the nations of the world will need to shift to a low-carbon future in order to avoid dangerous changes to the global climate. Even the Federal Environment Minister admits that Australia will need to cut greenhouse gas emission by 60 per cent or more. This report is ground breaking
Throughout the Western world, the changing nature of families has led to a highly charged debate and when commentators talk of how families have changed they usually compare family structures now to those of the 1950s and 1960s. Families are changing, but for reasons far more complex than declining moral values and rising selfish individualism.
The ‘ageing crisis’ is founded on three main assumptions: that older people are a social and economic burden; that population ageing will result in a serious dependency ratio imbalance; and, that there is a close correspondence between the size of the aged population and increased public expenditure. This paper argues that the transition to an
A report last year by the Allen Consulting Group has played a pivotal role in reinforcing perceptions that cutting greenhouse gases would result in large economic costs and extensive job losses, especially in regional and rural Australia. The first part of this paper exposes a number of serious errors in the Allen Consulting report on
This paper documents the development of the vertical and horizontal integration of the healthcare services sector. It argues that in the Australian context, the private (including the corporate) provision and ownership of health service facilities is more costly than public provision. The paper also demonstrates that, contrary to popular belief, competition does not necessarily benefit
This paper shows that instead of encouraging private provision, concessions for private health insurance have been a financial windfall for wealthy households. The existing cash incentives and tax rebates for private health insurance are in urgent need of reform.
Proceedings of a conference organised by Manning Clark House and The Australia Institute, held on 26 July 2001. The paper includes nine presentations by speakers at the conference, and is edited by Pamela Kinnear.
This study considers the rationale for estimating tax expenditures, and the conceptual basis for measurement. It assesses the current approach to accounting for the surcharge in the TES against international practice and against the stated aims of tax expenditure reporting in Australia.
Submission No.2: Full fee-paying students and standards
This is an exploratory study of social scientists’ perceptions and experiences of academic freedom in the new commercial realities of Australian higher education. Focusing specifically on the social sciences this study gives cause for concern about the future of academic freedom.
The system of labour market statistics in Australia is in urgent need of reform. In addition to calling for the collection of new data on the desired amount of work for all workers, this report outlines the benefits of work sharing, and suggests mechanisms for achieving a fairer distribution of work.
This paper reports an updated version of the GPI published by The Australia Institute in 1997. The paper is in two parts, the first providing the rational for the GPI and raising some methodological issues. The second part provides a comprehensive discussion of each component making up the GPI.
This study breaks new ground by examining how the benefits of tax concessions for health expenditures, such as the rebate for health insurance, have been distributed amongst taxpayer income groups. It shows for the first time the value of the tax relief arising from the Medicare levy surcharge for those with private health insurance.
This paper examines the relationship between recessions and the size and duration of long-term unemployment. The results should leave us in no doubt that just a few poor years of economic growth have very significant medium-term implications for long-term unemployment.
This discussion paper is part of the Australia Institute’s work program on measuring quality of life. The Institute has formed a collaborative partnership with Newcastle City Council to build an indicator series against which the Newcastle community’s progress towards sustainability can be measured.
The Commonwealth Serum Laboratories (CSL) was sold in 1994 by the Commonwealth and became a privately owned company, tasked with the processing of blood. Since its privatisation it has been accused of allowing hepatitis-C and CJD to infect the blood. This document focuses on the $400 million given to CSL by the Commonwealth between 1994
The Prime Minister has given a guarantee that charities will be no worse off under the GST. This paper argues that this guarantee can only be met if substantial changes are made to the definition of what constitutes a charity and its “non-commercial” activities.
This paper is the first comprehensive investigation of the relationship between population growth and greenhouse gas emissions in Australia. There are four parts to the analysis each of which reaches some striking conclusions.
This study uses a survey of 1200 Australians to investigate public perceptions of quality of life in Australia. It contradicts recent claims of a new mood of optimism in Australia and adds to the body of evidence that suggests our policy makers give too much emphasis to economic growth at all costs.
This study comprises a comprehensive assessment of public spending on education, employment, health and housing services for indigenous Australians compared with non-indigenous Australians. It shows that, contrary to claims made recently, public spending on programs for indigenous people is not excessive, and the advantages indigenous people gain from this expenditure are minuscule compared with the
Submission presented jointly the Australia Institute, the Australian Conservation Foundation and the Australian Medical Association to the Senate Committee
Address to the Horizons of Science Forum, UTS
A briefing to delegates at the Bonn climate change negotiations
Only 2% of national tax revenues come from gambling. But the ethics, economics, and fairness of gambling taxes are becoming a critical issue as ‘the global economy’ challenges the sovereignty of governments. The ever-narrowing range of revenue options has left state governments with little choice but to conform with nearby jurisdictions pursuing expansionary gambling policies.
In April 1997 the Australia Institute published Native Title: Implications for land management (Discussion Paper No. 11). It was highly successful, with hundreds of copies circulating around Australia from Parliament House in Canberra to remote communities in Western Australia. The success of that paper was proof of the craving for clearly presented information about indigenous
It has long been recognised that GDP growth does not correlate well with changes in social welfare, i.e. national well-being. The GPI adjusts GDP by 23 factors that reflect some of the social and environmental costs of economic growth to give a better measures of changes in national prosperity. This paper explores these issues in
The native title debate has been one of the most acrimonious and divisive political debates in Australia’s history. The historic task of reconciliation requires a just settlement of the claims by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to land. The authors of this paper conclude that legislated extinguishment would be a severe and enduring blow