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Opinion pieces written on a variety of Commission reports by Commissioners and the Chair.

Australian healthcare productivity measures up

08 May 2024

New research from the Productivity Commission shows that, at least when it comes to healthcare, the way we measure productivity might not be telling the full story.

This is how to win the productivity prize

07 Mar 2024

If a country used only half its factories it would waste a lot of its productive potential. The same is true if we tap into only half of society’s brainpower.

Australians need to work smarter – not longer or harder

07 Mar 2024

The 2022-23 financial year saw a lot of big firsts for the Australian economy – some good and others not so good.

The right approach to AI regulation

22 Feb 2024

Artificial Intelligence technologies (AI) could significantly increase Australia’s productivity and drive economic wellbeing. But to gain these benefits, we need the right approach to regulation.

Why isn't the gap closed?

20 Feb 2024

Readers will know that the Closing the Gap agenda is not new. In fact, it has been around for over 15 years. And many of you would know that while there have been some improvements - for the most part, they have been small.

Tax reform should seriously look at industry levies

31 Jan 2024

While most policymakers recognise that our tax system would benefit from reform, our first priority should be to stop making it worse.

Be alert but not alarmed about post-COVID productivity slump

06 Dec 2023

Another national accounts release, another lacklustre annual productivity statistic - but with a glimmer of hope.

Rules around charitable giving need to be overhauled

06 Dec 2023

Tax reform conversations can sometimes seem somewhat abstract. But tax policy can have very real and immediate impacts on our lives. Nowhere is the human impact of tax policy more evident than in our deductible gift recipient system.

Universal childcare must cater for all children

05 Dec 2023

While the picture has improved in recent years, early childhood education and care (ECEC) is still out of reach for many Australian families.

Welcome Associate Commissioner Chris Guest

07 Jun 2023

We are pleased to announce that Chris Guest has joined the Productivity Commission as an Associate Commissioner with the Murray Darling Basin Plan: Implementation Review.

Opportunities for better housing outcomes

07 Oct 2022

Four years ago, Australian governments signed the National Housing and Homelessness Agreement (NHHA), with the aim of improving access to affordable housing. Today, by most measures, the situation is no better than it was in 2018.

Australia's data and digital dividend

25 Aug 2022

Australia is in the middle of a digital and data revolution. The Productivity Commission’s second interim report for our five-year productivity inquiry looks at how these new technologies can grow our economy.

Protecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander visual arts and crafts

23 Aug 2022

A draft report focuses on ways to address fake 'Indigenous-style' art and support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists and art centres.

Not everyone has a home that is safe and affordable

04 Feb 2022

During the COVID‑19 pandemic, we have become more familiar with our homes. They are essential to our lives: where we rest, care for our family, entertain friends and, increasingly, work. But not everyone has a home that is safe and affordable.

Good time for a public transport pricing rethink

06 Jan 2022

COVID has affected many things. One that is less talked about is public transport. Google mobility data shows that when COVID hit Australia in early 2020, trips on public transport fell by as much as 70 per cent in large states and by more in Victoria. That is hardly a surprise.

Furthering Australian consumers’ right to repair

08 Dec 2021

In Australia, and around the world, there are growing concerns that repairs of consumer products are becoming ever more difficult and impractical to undertake or access. These products include everything from smart phones through to washing machines and cars.

Working from home: What’s next?

21 Oct 2021

If an alien came to Earth, what would they make of the daily commute? Millions of people getting up each day, going from one building to another in the morning, then doing the opposite at night.

Australia has fewer criminal offenders but more people in prisons

18 Oct 2021

The past 40 years has seen a steady rise in the level of imprisonment in Australia and the imprisonment rate is at the highest level in a century. How do we explain this?

SME lending transformation

11 Oct 2021

Productivity Commission research shows a lending market being transformed, as demand for unsecured credit prompts a raft of new providers and products. Innovative lenders with new business models are using technology and data to identify creditworthy applicants.

Our trade fortunes rely less on China than you think

07 Sep 2021

The stress test created by Beijing’s 2020 tariffs and bans reveals significant facts about the make-up and nature of Australia’s foreign trade.

Targeted texts and peer support: how smarter health care can cut costs and help Australians with chronic conditions

21 Apr 2021

Creating a culture of innovation and sharing best practice throughout our health system will benefit the growing number of Australians living with chronic health conditions.

Why is a good idea so hard to do? Integrating urban water

19 Mar 2020

Our major cities are facing considerable water challenges in the future. Significant population growth will increase demand for services whilst climate change is likely to reduce water availability in most areas.

Should everyone go to university?

26 Jun 2019

Right now the government caps university places. But until 2017 universities could accept as many students as they liked and the government provided funding for all of these places. It was called the ‘demand driven system’ and it started in 2010.

Better functioning towns and cities

23 Feb 2018

The overwhelming majority of Australians live and work in cities... so how cities operate now and in the future is integral to both the quality of people’s lives and national prosperity.

Skin in the game – education and workforce

12 Feb 2018

The skills needed for well-paid jobs change just like everything else. So does Australia have the right system in place? One that will meet the needs of both employees’ and employers’?

Healthier Australians

18 Jan 2018

While on many measures, the Australian health system is very good compared with health care systems in many other countries, this is not true across the board. There is significant potential for improvement.

PC News

08 Feb 2017

The newsletter which ceased in 2019, was a round-up of the Commission's news and events.