Should special deals with states and non-government sectors be removed?
A new school funding model being proposed aims to free up funds to help education ministers resolve their differences in state funding, and deliver needs-based funding in full.
Chronic diseases are becoming more common, due to population growth and ageing.
Australians are living longer than ever but with higher rates of chronic disease, the latest national report card shows.
Road user pricing would encourage people to take non-essential trips at a different time, or not at all.
Charging people to drive has been the dream of policy wonks – serving politicians tend to see it as political poison. So when federal minister Paul Fletcher raises it, that's a step forward.
Has education spending gone up while student achievement has stalled?
AAP Image/Dan Peled
The Productivity Commission has said that education spending has substantially increased over the last decade but student achievement has shown little or no improvement. Is that true?
Generous superannuation tax breaks for the rich are creating inequality, analysis shows.
Both the government and opposition's proposed reforms to the superannuation system will target generous tax breaks given mostly to wealthy retirees.
Labor leader Bill Shorten has shown, with the announcement of the party’s super plan, that he’s willing to cooperate with the government on some measures.
Labor's superannuation plan shows some promise for budget repair, if the two parties can compromise where it counts.
Could gas play a bigger role in Australia’s power sector?
AAP Image/QGC Australia, Simon Townsley
The recent meeting of Australia's energy ministers had a major focus on gas in our power sector.
Is it fair that students pay different amounts for university courses?
Students currently pay higher fees for courses that lead to jobs with typically higher wages. But not all students find, or want, a job in their area of study. Should all students then pay the same amount for their university degree?
The long-awaited look into super is happening.
Image sourced from www.shutterstock.com
The Productivity Commission has set in train a comprehensive evaluation of how super works.
Some regions have had rates of preventable hospital admissions 50% above the state average for more than a decade.
Marcos Mesa Sam Wordley/Shutterstock
People ending up in hospital for diabetes, tooth decay, or other conditions that should be treatable or manageable out of hospital is a warning sign of system failure.
The debate about ageing needs to move away from claiming the sky will fall in because of the ageing of the population.
The ageing population is only a relatively small contributor to the growth in hospital admissions.
How possible will budget repair be?
Hoping for the best is not a budget management strategy: but Australia can set realistic goals.
Education policy should focus on making sure that every student makes great progress, rather than accountability for test scores or teacher performance pay.
Focusing on progress – not just achievement – and investing in improving teaching practice will help to lift slipping standards in Australian schools.
Both sides of politics agree that student funding rates need reviewing.
At best, there will be no new public money, just shuffling funds between programs. At worst, higher education will help reduce the budget deficit.
By persuading some drivers to travel a different route or at a different time, congestion charges can dramatically improve the flow of traffic.
Bigger cities increase wages, output and innovation, but also problems of congestion and pollution. Congestion charges can minimise these problems by dramatically improving traffic flows.
Australia’s power policies still aren’t heading in quite the right direction.
AAP Image/Mick Tsikas
Australia's energy policy has lost its way over the past couple of decades, which is unfortunate because the challenges – to move to a low-carbon economy without high prices – have never been tougher.
Australians contribute almost a fifth of all health care spending through fees.
Health policy was an important factor in the election outcome, but one of the most important issues in the health sector – the impact of out-of-pocket costs – was mostly ignored.
Malcolm Turnbull faces many challenges in transitioning Australia to a post-mining boom economy.
What are the key policy challenges facing the new Turnbull government in terms of economic growth and budgets, cities, transport, energy, school education, higher education and health?
Malcolm Turnbull sets about the business of his returned government with the Secretary of Prime Minister and Cabinet, Martin Parkinson.
With nearly 25 years of uninterrupted economic growth at risk of coming to an end, the new government must make budget repair a priority.
Both domestic and global economic challenges face the new Turnbull government.
The government should consider five options to increase economic growth.