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The probability of receiving a work for the dole pilot is much higher in non-marginal electorates, regardless of the level of actual youth unemployment. AAP/Julian Smith

Safe seats are more likely to have a work for the dole pilot

In July, the federal government will begin a series of pilot programs for its work for the dole scheme across Australia. All job seekers aged 18 to 30 who have been unemployed for more than a year and…
Prime Minister Tony Abbott treated PUP leader Clive Palmer with disdain when he was sniffing around for Liberal National Party preselection, now he needs his party’s support in the Senate. AAP/Jeffrey Chan

Grattan on Friday: Tony Abbott should understand that people aren’t as obsessed with the carbon tax as he is

Tony Abbott will be in Melbourne this weekend to address the Liberal federal council. The timing is unfortunate. A Newspoll has just shown the Victorian Coalition would lose badly in an election held now…
A healthy youth is critical for laying the solid foundations required for a long-term healthy lifestyle. Flickr: Jose Javier Martin Espartosa

Healthy youth is key to a healthy life but Australia remains behind

Adolescence is supposed to be the healthiest of times in our lives. But open any newspaper and you’re likely to find an article about the health problems of today’s youth. Whether it’s drugs or alcohol-fuelled…
‘We don’t wake up for less than $10,000 a day.’ AAP Image/David Crosling

The story of … the supermodel

Women, fashion, and glamour are synonymous in the modern era – but in the mid to late 1980s this association intensified into one distinct cultural icon: the supermodel. While highly professional models…
Whether it’s in a church or at a festival, music can change the way we see the world and shift our behaviour. Exit Festival

Pentecostal, Pearl Jam – music brings ecstasy to us all

You have probably felt the power of music to lift you out of yourself. Perhaps you were in a magnificent cathedral, listening to a choral mass. Maybe you were at a music festival where the music made you…
A greater stick-nest rat ready to be released - with radio collar attached. Arid Recovery

From the frontline: saving Australia’s threatened mammals

Almost a third of Australia’s mammals have become extinct or are facing extinction, largely thanks to introduced predators such as cats and foxes. But what is the best way to save the species still alive…
Do teachers’ grades affect how well they can teach? AAP

ATAR scores only part of the picture for teaching

A common debate has resurfaced over teacher quality and the quality of teacher education in Australia. This time it was started by a leaked draft report into teacher education from the Australian Institute…
After a penalty shoot out, the Brazilian team celebrated victory in the Homeless World Cup final in Poland last year. EPA/Marek Zakrzewski

Homeless, but not hopeless: the other football World Cup

The 2014 World Cup in Brazil will come and go by mid-July, and with it leave its lasting impact — good and bad. But 2014 will also see the annual Homeless World Cup return to South America, some three…
The Commonwealth Bank and ASIC may face a Royal Commission. AAP/Dan Peled

Call for Commonwealth Bank, ASIC to face Royal Commission

A senate inquiry has called for the Commonwealth Bank (CBA) and Australia’s corporate regulator, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), to be investigated by a Royal Commission. The…
Reforming Victorian homicide law has been a long process, but a bill introduced today is a significant step forward. AAP/Dave Hunt

Victorian homicide law reforms ensure just responses to violence

Victorian attorney-general Robert Clark today introduced a bill into parliament that repeals the offence of defensive homicide. The bill signifies a significant step forward in ensuring just responses…
Death in Paradise has proven a rating’s hit for the ABC – why would that be? ABC

Australia’s screen industry workers should watch more TV

Television is a voracious medium – and yet I would argue many of those commissioning screen content in Australia have little appetite for experimentation. Australia’s digital free-to-air service, in metropolitan…
A new social media site has gained popularity in Australia. Experts say its anonymity opens up kids to dangerous cyberbullying. Shutterstock

Ask.fm: just asking for trouble?

Cyberbullying experts, schools and parents are concerned about another social networking site targeting teens. Ask.fm enables users to post questions; you sign up and people ask you or you ask other people…
Clive Palmer announced his climate policy at a press conference with former US vice president Al Gore last night. AAPImage/Alan Porritt

AUDIO Q&A: What’s in and out of Palmer’s climate strategy

In a surprising announcement last night Clive Palmer promised to abolish Australia’s current carbon price, and block the coalition’s Direct Action policy. But Palmer has said he will vote to retain the…
The Australian government hopes to finalise the Free Trade Agreement with China by the end of the year. PARKER SONG / POOL/ AAP

Why China-Australia FTA may still be some way off

This week treasurer Joe Hockey, and trade minister Andrew Robb have been in China for the inaugural Australia-China Strategic Economic Dialogue. These talks are one part of the “Strategic Partnership…
Delicious and nutritious … and safe. Sarah Gilbert/Flickr

Safety first – assessing the health risks of GM foods

In this third instalment of GM in Australia – a series looking at the facts, ethics, regulations and research into genetically modified crops – Ashley Ng explains how GM foods are determined safe to eat…
Dejected South Korean fans after their team lost against Algeria. EPA/Kim Chul-Soo

Suicide rates and World Cup results: beyond the numbers game

Several studies appear to show quite noticeable associations between hosting and performance at World Cups and suicide rates. When France hosted (and won) the football World Cup in 1998, the suicide rate…
A MQ-9 Reaper Drone has an operational cost one-fifth of the F35 Joint Strike Fighter. So should drones replace soldiers in military warfare? US Air Force

Drones are cheap, soldiers are not: a cost-benefit analysis of war

Cost is largely absent in the key debates around the use of unmanned drones in war, even though drones are a cost-effective way of achieving national security objectives. Many of the common objections…
We enjoy a balanced diet today, but it seems our ancestors ate their greens too. Jordan Fischer/Flickr

What the crap? Neanderthals had a taste for vegetables

The evolution of diet is intimately linked to human evolution: from the use of tools to break nuts, collect insects or hunt game, to the use of fire allowing more calories to be extracted from the food…
Jonathan Brown is not the only professional football player to recently retire because of head injuries. AAP Image/Dave Hunt

Repeated head injuries highlight gaps in sports concussion management

Brisbane Lions champion Jonathan Brown’s premature exit from the AFL this week after suffering yet another concussion was in many ways unsurprising. His friends and fans describe him as a “warrior” who…
Together with the government, the banking sector could play a role in easing the transition for mining workers. Tony McDonough/AAP

HECS for the unemployed: a finance answer to mining’s decline

A decade of strong mining revenue growth has seen workers disproportionately located in the “mining states” of Queensland and Western Australia. With mining investment now waning, workers drawn by in the…
The arty Steiner schools are expanding all over the world, but are they as effective as regular schools? Flickr/storebukkebrose

For creativity, capability and resilience, Steiner schools work

Steiner education is a popular choice of alternative schooling in Australia, with more than 40 schools country-wide. Along with other alternatives to mainstream schooling, Australia seems to be pursuing…
Look to Twitter to see what Brazilians really think of the World Cup. EPA/Abedin Taherkenareh

View from Brazil: Twitter as a tool for protest – and procrastination

Twitter activity this week, just like the World Cup, has definitely not slowed since the opening match. Here, we look at the shift in conversation as the tournament begins to take shape – who is excited…
The hero’s journey in three stages - separation, initiation, return - offers a narrative framework for understanding character progression. Pineapples101

Are you monomythic? Joseph Campbell and the hero’s journey

When you tell someone a story, do you plan it out beforehand so that it’ll sound good? Do you carefully plot what you’ll say, in a specific order? Or does the story find a way of telling itself, the plot…