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First published by The Conversation - republished with permission.

Research reveals shocking detail on how Australia’s environmental scientists are being silenced

Ecologists and conservation experts in government, industry and universities are routinely constrained in communicating scientific evidence on threatened species, mining, logging and other threats to the environment, our new research has found.

Posted in Climate | 8 Comments

Hotel quarantine report blasts government failures, but political fallout is likely to be minimal

The final report of the COVID-19 Hotel Quarantine Inquiry, issued by former judge Jennifer Coate, outlines monumental errors made by the Victorian government and its public servants.

Posted in Politics | Tagged | 6 Comments

After two decades, the national electricity market is on its way out, and that’s alright (Dec 10, 2020)

It has been more than 20 years in the making, but there is now a new order in Australia’s grandest (and most problematic) example of cooperative federalism: the National Electricity Market.

Posted in Economy | Leave a comment

Labor is set to have itself a nervy little Christmas. It’s not too late to make 2021 sing (The Conversation Dec 8, 2020)

Federal Labor marginal seat members face a very nervy Christmas.

Posted in Politics | 11 Comments

Australia needs a national approach to combat the health effects of climate change (The Conversation Dec 6, 2020)

Australia has just recorded its hottest November on record, only months after the devastating bushfires of last summer that ruined the lives and livelihoods of thousands.

Posted in Climate | Leave a comment

The Anzac legend has blinded Australia to its war atrocities. It’s time for a reckoning (The Conversation Dec 7, 2020)

For years, Australians have faced a steady stream of investigative media reports about atrocities allegedly committed by the country’s most elite soldiers in Afghanistan.

Posted in Defence and Security | 5 Comments

What’s behind China’s bullying of Australia? It sees a soft target — and an essential one (The Conversation Dec 2, 2020)

As the diplomatic fallout continues over the digitally altered war crimes tweet sent by China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Zhao Lijian, earlier this week, it’s important to note this inflammatory and offensive post is not an isolated case.

Posted in China | 42 Comments

Why New Zealand is ideally placed to broker a truce between China and the Five Eyes alliance (The Conversation Dec 2, 2020)

With tension escalating between China and members of the Five Eyes security alliance, most recently over a Chinese tweet that used a doctored image to attack Australia, New Zealand is arguably in a prime position to broker a kind of truce.

Posted in World Affairs | Leave a comment

Jeff Borland. New finding: boosting JobSeeker wouldn’t keep Australians away from paid work

Incentives, the Freakonomics author Steven Levitt once quipped, are the “cornerstone of modern life”. To this I would add: only if the incentive is big enough.

Posted in Economy | 1 Comment

JobMaker is nowhere near bold enough. Here are four ways to expand it (The Conversation Nov 10, 2020)

The government has targeted its JobMaker Hiring Credit too narrowly.

Posted in Economy | Leave a comment

Hotel quarantine interim report on outsourcing recommends changes but accountability questions remain (Kristen Rundle, The Conversation 6.11.20)

If the front line of the hotel quarantine system was simply too important a responsibility to be outsourced, it is time to get to the bottom of why this was the case, and why it might also be the case … Continue reading

Posted in Health, Politics | Leave a comment

Angelique Chan. Asian countries do aged care differently. Here’s what we can learn from them (The Conversation Oct 23, 2020)

Unlike in Western countries like Australia, traditional Asian cultures place a heavy emphasis on filial piety — the expectation children will support their parents in old age.

Posted in Health | 1 Comment

Bruce Mountain and Steven Percy. Pumped hydro isn’t our energy future, it’s our past (The Conversation 29.10.20)

It’s now beyond dispute that — for new electricity generation — solar, wind and other forms of renewable energy are cheaper than anything else: cheaper than new coal fired power stations, cheaper than new gas-fired stations and cheaper than new … Continue reading

Posted in Climate | Leave a comment

Despite more than 30 major inquiries, governments still haven’t fixed aged care. Why are the lobbyists getting away with it? (The Conversation Oct 21, 2020)

The government funds the sector and provides a relatively “light-touch” oversight, while the providers attend to the day-to-day running of the facilities. However, there is concern this alignment has meant successive governments are not as involved as they should be … Continue reading

Posted in Health | 1 Comment

After Covid, we’ll need a rethink to repair Australia’s housing system and the economy (The Conversation Sep 11, 2020)

A new report from the New South Wales Productivity Commission (NSWPC) announces that “[higher] housing costs […] impose broader economic costs”. That chimes with our own newly published research. The implication is that Australia’s heavily capitalised housing market will weigh down economic recovery … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | 1 Comment

Research reveals shocking detail on how Australia’s environmental scientists are being silenced (The Conversation Sep 9, 2020)

Ecologists and conservation experts in government, industry and universities are routinely constrained in communicating scientific evidence on threatened species, mining, logging and other threats to the environment, our new research has found.

Posted in Climate, Politics | 2 Comments

The mystery of the Top End’s vanishing wildlife, and the unexpected culprits (The Conversation, July 29 2020)

Only a few decades ago, encountering a bandicoot or quoll around your campsite in the evening was a common and delightful experience across the Top End. Sadly, our campsites are now far less lively.

Posted in Climate, Politics | Leave a comment

Worried about(Chinese) agents of foreign influence? Just look at who owns Australia’s biggest companies

The attention being given to possible covert influence being exercised by China in Australia shouldn’t distract us from recognising that very overt foreign influence now occurs through investment.

Posted in Economy, Politics | Leave a comment

THALIA ANTHONY. ‘I can’t breathe!’ Australia must look in the mirror to see our own deaths in custody (THE CONVERSATION 2.6.20)

I can’t breathe, please! Let me up, please! I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe!

Posted in Indigenous affairs, Politics | 6 Comments

BRENDAN COATES. Money for social housing the key to construction stimulus

There’s no doubt Australia’s construction industry is facing tough times. COVID-19 has caused migration to slow to a trickle. Some 2.6 million Australians have either lost their jobs or had their hours cut in the past two months. Many economists expect property prices to … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Housing | 2 Comments