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Labour costs have played an insignificant role in the recent increase in inflation, accounting for just 15 percent of economy wide price increases while profits have played an overwhelming role, accounting for about 60 percent of recent inflation.
The recent federal election featured important debate regarding the rising cost of living in Australia, and whether and how wages should be boosted to keep up with higher prices. One exchange, late in the campaign, occurred when ALP leader Anthony Albanese stated his belief that wages should keep up with prices — but then was
Firms like Woolworths would have still seen profit growth if they paid all of their workers a five percent pay rise and did not increase prices.
Wage growth played no significant role in the recent surge in inflation and, as the analysis shows, maintaining real wages across the entire economy as distinct from merely maintaining the minimum wage in real terms would have a trivial impact on the price level even if firms seek to recoup all of a nominal wage rise as further price increases.
Almost one in five Australians (and a higher proportion of young workers) acknowledge working with potential COVID symptoms over the course of the pandemic, according to new opinion research published by the Centre for Future Work. The research confirms the public health dangers of Australia’s existing patchwork system of sick leave and related entitlements. The main
A comprehensive review of Australian wage trends indicates that wage growth is likely to remain stuck at historically weak levels despite the dramatic disruptions experienced by the Australian labour market through the COVID-19 pandemic. The report finds that targeted policies to deliberately lift wages are needed to break free of the low-wage trajectory that has
Young Australians have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Young people make up just 14% of the workforce but bore 55% of the job losses during the 2021 lockdowns. This crisis has compounded decades of high youth unemployment and underemployment. Now is the time for long-term policies to help and protect young people in
The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated labour market problems for young people in NSW. By several measures, young people in NSW have been the hardest hit in Australia. There are a range of policies available to the NSW Government to address this crisis.
Strong vocational education and training (VET) systems are vital to the success of dynamic, innovative economies and inclusive labour markets. Australia’s VET system once provided well-established and dependable education-to-jobs pathways, but a combination of policy vandalism and fiscal mismanagement plunged the VET system into a lasting and multidimensional crisis. During the pandemic, the federal government
2021 marks the thirteenth annual Go Home on Time Day (GHOTD), an initiative of the Centre for Future Work at the Australia Institute that shines a spotlight on overwork among Australians, including excessive overtime that is often unpaid. Last year’s report emphasised that 2020 had been extraordinary and difficult, and 2021 has brought little reprieve.
Like Australia, Germany has had a long and polarised debate about phasing out coal-fired power stations. Germany formed a multi-stakeholder group that negotiated a consensus to phase out coal power by 2038. A similar process could help Australia navigate the trade-offs inherent in such a change.
New research confirms that workers in casual and insecure jobs have borne the lion’s share of job losses during the COVID-19 pandemic – both the first lockdowns in 2020, and the more recent second wave of closures. Since May, workers in casual and part-time jobs have suffered over 70% of job losses from renewed lockdowns and
The Tasmanian Government’s attempts to restrict citizens’ right to protest with the Workplaces (Protection from Protesters) Amendment Bill 2021, is unnecessary and problematic. The Amendment Bill 2021 continues to preference businesses’ ability to carry out work over the right of people to protest by making a broad range of peaceful protest activities illegal, with harsh
Australia’s universities were uniquely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and recession — including the closure of borders to most international students, the implementation of new COVID-safe instruction practices, and effective exclusion from Commonwealth support programs like JobKeeper. Now, 18 months after the borders were first closed, things are getting worse for universities, not better. New research from
Key Findings: More than three-quarters of Australians (77%) agree with making the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory for workers in contact with vulnerable demographics, such as aged care workers. Only 13% disagree. One in two Australians (50%) strongly agree with making the vaccine mandatory for certain workers. Coalition (84%) and Labor (83%) voters are the most likely
Australia’s electricity industry constitutes a large and critical component of our national economic infrastructure. The industry produces $25 billion per year in value- added. It employs around 50,000 Australians, paying out $6 billion per year in wages and salaries. It makes $45 billion in annual purchases from a diverse and far-reaching supply chain, that provides
This briefing note presents data on the gendered composition of the employment recovery since May. It shows women’s jobs returned on a more part-time and casualised basis than for men, and that the influx of women’s lower-earning jobs widened the gender pay gap between May and November 2020. While women were more likely to lose
Australia’s labour market experienced unprecedented volatility during 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic and resulting recession. In the first part of the year, employment declined faster and more deeply than in any previous economic downturn, as workplaces were closed to control the spread of infection. Then, after May, employment rebounded strongly. The subsequent recovery has
Bringing forward stage 2 of the tax cuts is ineffective stimulus. Up to 12 times as many jobs could be created if an equivalent amount of money was spent on labour intensive industries.
The failure of the Commonwealth to confirm that it will maintain funding for community service organisations could threaten up to 12,000 jobs in that sector, at a moment when those services are critical to Australia’s pandemic-damaged economy. That’s the conclusion of new research on the economic importance of Commonwealth pay equity funding, conducted by the
The provision of free childcare provides the rarest of economic policy opportunities – it’s both an effective form of fiscal stimulus in the short term and has the capacity to boost the long-term participation rate and, in turn, the long run rate of economic growth.
New national survey research from The Australia Institute reveals most Australians have been personally impacted by the bushfires and smoke, including millions missing work or suffering health impacts.
Australia has a long history of secondary boycotts, which have been widely used for causes now generally accepted. Expanding laws primarily intended to limit union power to outlaw advocacy campaigns is illiberal, and would require significant changes to the law.
New research from The Australia Institute’s Centre for Future Work estimates that Australian workers are currently working an average of 4.6 hours of unpaid overtime each week, which translates to 6 weeks of full time work without pay, per employee, per year – with an annual worth of $81.5 billion for Australian employers.