Tax Seminar – 11 June

My colleague Kazuki Onji is organising a 3/4-day seminar on taxation and public finance at ANU on 11 June. Full details over the fold.

Taxation and Public Finance:

Income Redistribution in Australia and Beyond

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Crawford Lecture Theatre, Sir Roland Wilson Building


One of the key considerations in public policy is the fairness of the ways in which incomes are redistributed.  With shifting social values under the dynamic economy, policy makers face continuous challenges in adapting the system to the evolving environment.  Given this backdrop, this workshop aims to provide a forum to discuss the equity issues in Australia and beyond.  The issues raised by the presenters include the appropriate mechanisms for income redistribution in the context of gender and of persons with disabilities, as well as comparisons between rich Australian tax payers and those from other nations.  Each session will consist of 40 minutes presentation, 10 minutes discussion, and 10 minutes questions and answers.


9:00am            Opening Address (Andrew MacIntyre, Crawford School)

9:05am            Time use among new mothers, the economic value of unpaid care work and gender aspects of superannuation tax concessions

Presenter: Julie P. Smith, Australian Centre for Economic Research on Health

10:00am          Coffee Break

10:30am          Optimal redistribution with unobservable disability: welfarist versus non-welfarist social objectives

Presenter: Maria Racionero, School of Economics

11:25am          The distribution of top incomes in five Anglo-Saxon countries over the twentieth century

Presenter:  Andrew Leigh, Research School of Social Sciences

12:20pm          Lunch Break

13:00pm          Wrap-up session

Bob Gregory, Research School of Social Sciences

14:00pm          Close


Kazuki.Onji AT

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5 Responses to Tax Seminar – 11 June

  1. Aussie Equitist says:

    Excellent – these sessions appear to be exploring some of my pet socio-economic issues!

    Finally some attention on some obvious and accelerating polarising demographic inequities in Australia’s tax-cum-welfare system!

    If only Australia’s pollies and powerbrokers would permit pragmatic and truly equitable tax and welfare reform which utilises our national prosperity to maintain a reasonable standard of living, dignity, participation, inclusion, self-determination and independence for the majority…

    Clearly, there must be a substantial shift to reverse the inherently inequitable, wasteful and counter-productive Superannuation subsidies which emerged during the elitist Howardian Era – especially on the bases of gender, geography and disability…
    Surely the alarm bells are ringing when the annual cost of essentially exclusive and non-means-tested Superannuation Tax Concessions now roughly equals the annual cost of aged pensions!?  Hence, I remain hopeful that there will be some pragmatic and equitable emphasis on redressing the inherent inequities associated with excessive and wasteful public subsidies of private superannuation in lieu of a national “Future Fund” type pension (noting that Australia and NZ are unique in the OECD for NOT having a formal national pension scheme.
    The GST has also proven to be a costly, time-consuming, narrow and inefficient nightmare – especially for Australia’s SME’s and the ATO!  Not such a “Simplified Tax System” after all!  Moreover, it leaves untapped the high-volume but readily-taxed inter/national banking, finance, stockmarket and associated investment activities – much of which activity is the exclusive domain of high income and/or wealth individuals.
    Hence, also I hope that some serious consideration will be given to the progressive option of replacing a whole raft of taxes with a truly broad-based “no-exceptions” Debits/Financial Transactions Tax – including diligent socio-economic costs-benefits analyses!

    If only I was in a position to more than an armchair lay observer…

  2. Patrick says:

    Where does tax get discussed?

  3. Kazuki Onji says:

    Hi Patrick

    The “wrap-up session”, moderated by Professor Gregory, is intended to provide an open forum for discussing the Australian tax system, with an eye on the ongoing review of the Rudd Government. Hope this addresses the question.

    Since there have been enquiries – the workshop is open to public.


  4. Patrick says:

    That doesn’t sound very useful. Sorry to be negative.

  5. Andrew Leigh says:

    Patrick, I expect Bob’s wrap-up will be quite good, with direct relevance for tax policy today. My paper with Atkinson is also relevant to debates about the top tax rate, which seem to affect top income shares very strongly. I haven’t seen Maria & Julie’s papers, but I have no reason to think they’re any less useful to policy.

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