A majority of Australians (63%) think our society has become more unequal over the last ten years while even more (79%) believe that governments should be doing more to reduce inequality. The new survey data has been released along with a landmark report from Australia21 and The Australia Institute, outlining a path to a more equal future for the country.
The report, entitled ‘A Fair Go for All Australians’, is the result of a roundtable involving 32 experts and politicians including Former Labor Treasurer Wayne Swan and Greens Leader Richard Di Natale.
Workforce (a labour relations bulletin published by Thomson-Reuters) recently surveyed major IR figures in Australia on what they saw as the big issues in 2018, and what they expect as the major talking points for 2019. Jim Stanford, economist and Centre for Future Work director, was one of those surveyed, and here are his remarks.
What was the most important issue or event in industrial relations this year?
In this commentary, Centre for Future Work Associate Dr. Anis Chowdhury discusses the economic benefits of industry-wide collective bargaining. In addition to supporting wage growth, industry-wide wage agreements generate significant efficiency benefits, by pressuring lagging firms to improve their innovation and productivity performance. The experience of other countries (such as Germany and Singapore) suggests that this system promotes greater efficiency, as well as equity -- although other wealth-sharing policies are also needed.
Dr. Chowdhury's full comment is posted below.
Collective bargaining in private sector workplaces could be almost extinct by 2030 under current rules, new research from the Centre for Future Work shows.
Australia’s enterprise bargaining system is rapidly crumbling in private sector workplaces, according to dramatic findings from a report released today by the Centre.
by Richard Denniss
It's easier to develop long-run visions than solve short-term problems, which presumably explains why governments facing election defeat seem to care more about what future governments should do, than what their government isn't doing.
For the third consecutive quarter, the share of Australian GDP paid out in wages, salaries and superannuation contributions to workers has shrunk. Data for the September quarter of 2018, released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Wednesday, shows that labour compensation accounted for just 46.85% of total economic output – one of the lowest on record.
That represents the third consecutive quarterly decline in relative labour compensation.
The recent Victorian election results showed Australian voters want governments to play a pro-active role delivering public services, infrastructure, improved labour standards, and sustainability. They showed that in a time of deep cynicism with federal politics, States (and Territories) can play an important role filling the democratic void left by dysfunction and policy paralysis at the Commonwealth level.