Category Archives: Indigenous Policy

Radical Hope: A Response

In October, Noel Pearson wrote a Quarterly Essay on Indigenous education titled “Radical Hope: Education and Equality in Australia”. In the December issue, I have a letter published in response. Full text over the fold.

Posted in Economics of Education, Indigenous Policy, Randomisation | 2 Comments

AbQuit

At Crikey, Simon Chapman suggests an intriguing health policy idea: why not pay Indigenous Australians to quit smoking? At the very least, I think this one merits a randomised trial. The critics might say that it will induce start-quit cycles, … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 11 Comments

Falling Behind

A couple of years ago, I read a paper by Roland Fryer and Steve Levitt (non-technical version here), which found that the black-white test score gap in the US widened after children hit school.* With my colleague Xiaodong Gong, we decided … Continue reading

Posted in Economics of Education, Indigenous Policy

Cash 4 Class in Colombia

I’ve been arguing recently that one idea which should be randomly trialled in Indigenous communities in Australia is a cash payment for attending school. Blog reader Brendan Duong points out that I should get some succor from the success of a … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy, Trade & Development

The Hamiltonian Solution

On the topic of payments to encourage Indigenous children to stay in school, I received a fascinating email from Chris Cullinan, which he’s kindly allowed me to reprint. Greetings Andrew, Saw an article in the Melbourne Age which highlighted your belief … Continue reading

Posted in Economics of Education, Indigenous Policy

Cash or culture?

Farrah Tomazin has an interesting piece in today’s Age on strategies to improve the performance of Indigenous children in Victorian schools, identifying a divide between those who say ‘change the school culture’ and those who say ‘spend more money’.

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 8 Comments

Sport as Social Policy?

In the context of Indigenous disadvantage, Francis Xavier Holden floats an idea I’ve never heard before. I’ve thought for a long time that one simple big idea that would contribute to Aboriginal wellbeing would be to locate one AFL team … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy, Sport | 15 Comments

More on cash 4 class

Today’s Oz has an article by Simon Kearney on one of the ideas I suggested last week – paying Indigenous children to attend school. He neatly links it in to the New York debate over paying poor kids to achieve … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 10 Comments

Five Ideas for the War Cabinet

The ‘war cabinet’ to address Indigenous disadvantage sounds gimmicky on first blush, but may actually play a useful role if it allows the federal government to rely more on the evidence and less on interest groups and the median voter. In … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 23 Comments

Sorry

I’m flying to Sydney on Wednesday (to give a lunchtime seminar at the RBA), so will unfortunately miss the chance to pop down to Parliament House at 9am and witness the historic parliamentary apology to the Stolen Generations. Any readers … Continue reading

Posted in Australian Politics, Indigenous Policy | 1 Comment

Teach for Oz

Noel Pearson’s Cape York Institute has gotten some media attention recently for its proposal to establish a ‘Teach for Australia’ program, under which talented university graduates would work in disadvantaged schools for a couple of years, before going on to … Continue reading

Posted in Economics of Education, Indigenous Policy | 16 Comments

Open Agenda

The ANU’s economics policy journal, Agenda, has recently gone open-access. The latest issue includes Boyd Hunter on Indigenous policy, and a three-way discussion on global warming (complete with three-way rebuttal) between Warwick McKibbin, John Quiggin, and Alex Robson.

Posted in Environmental Economics, Indigenous Policy | 1 Comment

Indigenous Policy Jobs

My former econ masters student Kirsten Storry is standing down from her position as indigenous policy researcher at the Centre for Independent Studies to take up a job in a Sydney law firm. It’s good for the law, but a … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy

For Better Policymaking, Toss a Coin

I have an oped in the Australian Financial Review today, discussing the upsurge of randomised trials in development economics, and linking it to Indigenous policy in Australia. It was written under somewhat unusual circumstances. I’ve spent the past few days on … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy, Trade & Development | 8 Comments

A Crisis, Definitely a Crisis

My friend Justin Wolfers emails an observation on the Indigenous policy initiative. I was just looking at the actual report that led to Howard’s actions with the aboriginal communities.  As I understand it, he is pushing these new policies based … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 25 Comments

Censoring Centrefolds

While most of the recent commentary has been on the federal government’s health checks and alcohol bans, one of the more curious aspects is the pornography ban. So far as I know, there’s no convincing experimental evidence on the question of … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 10 Comments

Howard's 18th Amendment

According to today’s press: Mr Howard said the Government’s intention was to “introduce widespread alcohol restrictions on Northern Territory Aboriginal land for six months”. The government is clearly right in noting that alcohol is a major contributor to Indigenous disadvantage. … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 15 Comments

Indigenous Crime Event Next Monday

Just a quick reminder about the ANU Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Indigenous Crime event scheduled for next Monday afternoon (details here). And to whet your appetite, here’s a recent paper co-authored by one of the speakers, Boyd Hunter. The economic and … Continue reading

Posted in Coming Events, Indigenous Policy | 1 Comment

Indigenous Violence & Crime

I’m running an event on Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Indigenous Crime on 28 May (details here). So it’s timely that the Australian Bureau of Statistics yesterday released a series of statistics on Indigenous Australians’ exposure to crime and the justice system. … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 5 Comments

Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Indigenous Crime

I’m organising an event on ‘Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Indigenous Crime’ at ANU on 28 May. Details over the fold. All welcome.

Posted in Coming Events, Indigenous Policy | 3 Comments

Indigenous Literacy

In a new CIS report, Kirsten Storry* outlines the low levels of english literacy among Indigenous Australians, especially in remote communities, and suggests some policy reforms. Among her findings: * Literacy levels among children and adults in remote communities are … Continue reading

Posted in Economics of Education, Indigenous Policy | 12 Comments

Don't believe the hype

I forgot to mention how much I enjoyed Boyd Hunter’s public lecture on August 3, on the topic that Indigenous policy should be based on evidence rather than hyperbole. Much of the talk focused on critiquing work coming out of the … Continue reading

Posted in Indigenous Policy | 4 Comments