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Analysis and Comment (18)

Pop up e-cig bar. Pop up e-cig bar. Lefteris Pitarakis/AP

Explainer: what do we know about e-cigarettes?

E-cigarettes are increasingly popular in a number of countries including the UK, while in others such as Norway and Brazil they are banned altogether. So amid all these differences in policy, what do we…
Old people aren’t museum relics. Old people aren’t museum relics. Mr Push

Hard Evidence: can we afford an ageing population?

Stories about “population ageing” often have a number of things in common – it is bad, it is new, and it will overwhelm us all. The major fear is a burden of cost and caring that more older people will…
If advice isn’t acted upon, is it good advice? If advice isn’t acted upon, is it good advice? kevincollins123

Bees, pesticides and … what are chief scientists for?

Without good advice, governments are in extreme danger of creating erroneous or damaging public policy. So it’s a serious matter when a government science adviser is accused of ignoring scientific evidence…
Martin Ferguson, Julia Gillard and Wayne Swan announced the MRRT in 2010 … but three ministers and three miners do not a policy make. Martin Ferguson, Julia Gillard and Wayne Swan announced the MRRT in 2010 … but three ministers and three miners do not a policy make. AAP/Alan Porritt

In mining and governing, policy made on the fly is likely to flop

Most controversial public policy could be said to be made on the run, or at least amended on a brisk walk. So the revelations in Peter Martin’s recent article on the errors embedded in the Gillard government’s…
Education academics and teachers should be able to share ideas. Education academics and teachers should be able to share ideas. Seminar image from www.shutterstock.com

No Apple for teachers shows the value of sharing new ideas

Apparently, teachers and principals have no need to hear about research on international education policy and are too sensitive to deal with “controversial” ideas. Last week, the University of Melbourne’s…
Former politician and economist John Hewson speaks to ANU’s Crawford School’s Bruce Chapman and Daniel Connell. Former politician and economist John Hewson speaks to ANU’s Crawford School’s Bruce Chapman and Daniel Connell.

John Hewson: tax reform doesn’t just mean lowering taxes

Welcome to the latest in our In Conversation series, between former politician and economist Dr John Hewson, Australian National University (ANU) Crawford School Director of Policy Impact Professor Bruce…
What’s wrong with this picture? Ask the community. Proposed changes to the MDBP were largely regarding limits to the amount of groundwater to be extracted. What’s wrong with this picture? Ask the community. Proposed changes to the MDBP were largely regarding limits to the amount of groundwater to be extracted. ECO IMAGES PTY LTD

Is anyone really listening? The Murray Darling and the limits to community consultation

On 28 May 2012 the Murray Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) handed down its long awaited revised blueprint to restore health to the Murray Darling Basin. The plan was the result of a 20-week community engagement…
How do we get beyond talking about sustainability to actually being sustainable? How do we get beyond talking about sustainability to actually being sustainable? Natural Step Online

Everyone loves sustainable development, but does anyone know what it is?

Everyone loves sustainable development. While we’re building and planning to improve our quality of life, why not balance and integrate the social, economic, and environmental issues? Hard to imagine that…
A lack of empirical data is hindering indigenous policymaking in the Northern Territory. A lack of empirical data is hindering indigenous policymaking in the Northern Territory. AAP

What’s data got to do with it? Reassessing the NT intervention

Since its introduction in 2007, there has been much debate over the effectiveness of the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) in improving the quality of life in remote indigenous communities…
Australian newspapers took a largely negative view of carbon pricing. Australian newspapers took a largely negative view of carbon pricing. avlxyz/Flickr

Carbon pricing policy in the media

While corporate media often criticise the poor communication of others, they are reluctant to critique their own power to influence public opinion and debate. Today the Australian Centre for Independent…
ASKAP sun up antennas. ASKAP sun up antennas. Swinburne Astronomy Productions/CSIRO

The future of Australian science – a Nobel Prize winner’s view

Newly-minted Nobel Laureate Professor Brian Schmidt reflects on the state of Australian science. The feted astronomer is optimistic about the future and the contribution science can make to improving lives…
Julia Gillard has to strike a balance between forging meaningful links with Asian countries, and managing relationships with older allies. Julia Gillard has to strike a balance between forging meaningful links with Asian countries, and managing relationships with older allies. EPA/Rungroj Yongrit

The ‘lucky, lazy country’ shows how not to win friends in Asia

AUSTRALIA IN ASIA: In the third part of our series, former diplomat Alison Broinowski of the Australian National University examines our rocky relationship with our Asian neighbours. “Australia hasn’t…
Australia needs to take a more considered approach to Indigenous spending. Australia needs to take a more considered approach to Indigenous spending. Rusty Stewart

Putting dollars on disadvantage: Australia’s Indigenous spending

AFTER THE INTERVENTION - Today, The Conversation launches a series looking at the recent history of Indigenous policy in Australia, and some ways forward. Are any of the current approaches working? What…
Boom to bailout: Ireland’s economic implosion shows the consequences of unfettered policy. Boom to bailout: Ireland’s economic implosion shows the consequences of unfettered policy. AAP

Why it pays to believe economists

This year’s Economic Society of Australia conference saw a range of strong views expressed on what Australian policy makers have managed to get broadly right (carbon tax – hurrah!) and wrong (NBN – boo…
Indigenous affairs minister Jenny Macklin must ensure policy reflect cultural differences. Indigenous affairs minister Jenny Macklin must ensure policy reflect cultural differences.

Blaming individuals will get indigenous employment policy nowhere

The Gillard Government’s new discussion paper on indigenous welfare policy in the Northern Territory continues Labor’s rhetorical reliance on a loosely defined concept of the “dignity of work”. Federal…

Research and News (2)

Research Briefs (2)