The ACT has Australia’s best state tax system, NSW the worst.
The Grattan Institute says swapping stamp duty for land tax would make Australians up to $17 billion a year better off.
There could be much clearer skies ahead for energy policy if states take the reins.
AAP Image/Lukas Coch
The federal government is primarily to blame for the mess that is Australia's energy policy. It's time for the states to step up, to reduce both prices and emissions.
Australian cities need to sustain higher levels of construction and to provide higher-density developments to ensure growing populations have access to affordable housing.
Governments should stop offering false hopes and pandering to NIMBY pressures. As well as increased public and private housing supply, growing cities need well-designed higher-density development.
No state is better than the rest on all education measures.
School education in Australia is generally good, but it should be better.
Health is the largest single component of state government expenditure.
Australians are waiting too long for elective surgery, dental care and treatment for mental health. It's no wonder health is a vote-changer.
Another election, another infrastructure promise – in the Andrews government’s case, a $50 billion suburban rail loop.
In the election bidding wars, parties commit billions to transport projects, often before all the work needed to justify these has been done. More cost-effective alternatives hardly get a look-in.
The Morrison government is but the latest to indulge in the policy fantasy of redirecting population growth to regional Australia.
Efforts by governments to redirect population growth to regional Australia have never worked. Even if such policies could be made to work, they probably wouldn't be worth the costs.
The beauty of our federation is that each state can learn from each other.
Ahead of two state elections, the Grattan Institute Orange Book examines the state of each state and how each can do things better. The good news is that if each copied the best in each field they would do very well indeed.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison defended the Coalition’s spending on aged care services after announcing a Royal Commission into the sector.
AAP Image/Mick Tsikas
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has defended the Coalition’s spending on aged care as preparations for a Royal Commission into the sector get underway. We asked the experts to crunch the numbers.
Brisbane has half the population of Sydney and Melbourne, but all three cities have very similar commute distances and times.
Urban growth has had much less impact on commuting distances and times than media reports would suggest. The explanations include jobs being widely dispersed and residents' adaptable decision-making.
Transparency isn’t a silver bullet, but increasing it would go some way to changing the secrecy around who has access – and how much – to the government of the day.
A new report from Grattan Institute argues the secrecy and inequality surrounding who has "say" and "sway" in Canberra can be remedied – if politicians can just find the will to do it.
Labor’s plan to pay super to women on paid parental leave would barely boost their retirement incomes.
Bill Shorten says Labor's plan to make super contributions on behalf of women on paid parental leave would have a "big impact". We find its impact would be be minuscule.
New analysis shows parents at advantaged Catholic schools can afford to pay their way.
New analysis shows wealthy parents at advantaged Catholic primary schools could actually afford the increase to school fees under the needs-based model.
We need a tertiary education funding system that will help get students into courses with employment opportunities at the end of them.
If Labor is to once again uncap university funding, vocational education reform is a vital.
The government is now firmly focused on lowering household power bills.
AAP Image/Julian Smith
Australians are angry about electricity prices and both the federal government and opposition are proposing to cap them. Will this approach work, and what are the risks?
Rates of infection vary between hospitals, but these differences aren’t picked up in the accreditation process.
Each year, inspectors visit Australian hospitals. But they're less like secret shoppers who identify flaws, and more like guests of a carefully orchestrated performance. This needs to change.
The states have pulled far ahead of the Commonwealth on improving transparency around political donations.
While the states are making improvements to their political donations laws and practices, Canberra still has a long way to go.
Ministers at the last COAG Energy Council meeting, in April 2018. Some faces have since changed, while some states have entrenched their positions.
AAP Image/James Ross
As energy ministers head into a crucial meeting with their federal counterpart Josh Frydenberg, our state-by-state guide compares their various stances on the future of the National Energy Guarantee.
High fees are prohibitive for many people who need to see a specialist.
Yes, doctors' fees should be transparent, but that requirement alone doesn't go far enough to combat "bill shock". Specialists should also be required to set fees that are "fair and reasonable".
Around 4% of Australians have delayed seeing a GP because of the cost; this rises to 18% for GPs.
Primary care services are usually our first point of contact with the health system. Each year, about A$50 billion – nearly a third of all health expenditure – is spent on more than 400 million primary…