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Finding the missing youth vote

Perhaps this goes part of the way to explaining the recent Lowy Institute poll, which suggested that only 48% of 18 to 29 year olds prefer democracy to any other kind of government.

Rudd and Abbott mute on our forgotten wars

The Rudd-Abbott debate was mute on foreign policy. Just as concerning is that the Carr-Bishop debate on foreign policy was silent on the legacy of Australia's campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Rudd and Abbott mute on our forgotten wars

The Rudd-Abbott debate was mute on foreign policy. Just as concerning is that the Carr-Bishop debate on foreign policy was silent on the legacy of Australia's campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Battling the dark art of economic forecasting

Since so much international economic discussion revolves around GDP forecasting, it's worth looking at the quirks and pitfalls of this black art. Yogi Berra famously said 'It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future'. This view has been confirmed by more rigorous analysis, both at the Australian Treasury and the Reserve Bank of Australia. How should forecasters respond to the difficulties?

Precarious world needs effective G20

General secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation, Sharan Burrow, spoke to the Lowy Institute for International Policy in Sydney, Australia on Thursday August 1 about the need for an effective G20 in a precarious world.

Heat on Abbott to defuse costings attack

The Coalition will try to defuse Labor attacks over its refusal so far to disclose detailed policy costings by releasing a fully costed paid parental leave policy this week and a statement explaining the “comprehensive” processes it has used to cost other policies.

Have attitudes to Asia changed in 60 years? Not as much as you’d think

For all the hyperbole around the importance of the Asian century, how well does the West – and Australia – really know Asia? We can argue that knowledge of Asia over the past 50 years has increased dramatically, but knowing the region – a more intimate, subtle process – is another matter.

Manus Island news wrap

“If Namah's challenge succeeds, as it should, we will see swift movement from [PNG Prime Minister Peter] O'Neill and his unprecedented majority in Parliament to immediately amend Section 42 of the constitution to address the loophole,” he wrote for the Lowy Institute’s blog on July 24.

Tweeters generally underwhelmed

According to Twitter Australia, this was the peak moment, sparking 1952 Tweets per minute of a total of 75,000 for the event.  "Less a debate than a dual press conference. The rules seem to be inhibiting engagement between the two leaders," tweeted Michael Fullilove, head of the foreign policy think tank the Lowy Institute.

Labor's harsh line delaying boats

Authorities believe there are about 10,000 asylum-seekers in Indonesia seeking to come to Australia by boat and who still pose a major challenge to Kevin Rudd's Papua New Guinea Solution.

In trouble abroad? Consular help may not come

Foreign minister Bob Carr will announce a "refinement" of the consular assistance available to Australians in trouble overseas, in a move designed to lower expectations of the help the government can provide. In a debate at the Lowy Institute on Wednesday with the opposition's shadow foreign minister Julie Bishop, Senator Carr said "too much diplomatic time is being taken up looking after Australians who in many cases should be looking after after their own safety and wellbeing".

Productivity boost will keep us at No 1

The mining industry in Australia has been a great success story. According to the Reserve Bank of Australia, last year the resources economy accounted for 18 per cent of gross value add, or $250 billion of the nation's output -- as well as 1.1 million jobs, or close to 10 per cent of total employment, in a diverse range of professions from operators to engineers to environmental scientists.

Australia has role to play in managing policy change

As chair of the G20 in 2014, Australia is in a unique position to address concerns among financial institutions and some local regulators about the increasing complexity and burden of global financial regulations.

Election briefs

The cost of elections has been rising steadily with the 2010 poll costing $161 million in total, including $53 million in public funding for the political parties. 

With Bradley Manning convicted, what now for Julian Assange?

Bradley Manning’s conviction for espionage marks the closing stages in the US Army private’s personal battle. Yet for Julian Assange, founder of whistleblower website WikiLeaks and Australian Senate candidate, Manning is but a casualty in a much grander mission.

Disenchanted Young Cambodians Flex Their Muscle in Elections

Cambodia's young voters have used the weekend ballot to express their disgust over corruption, human rights abuses, land grabs and the lack of a free press, sending a clear message to long serving Prime Minister Hun Sen to shape up or ship out, analysts say.

Mission opens door to vast interior

Foreign Minister Bob Carr has opened Australia's fourth diplomatic mission in China in the thriving western metropolis of Chengdu, saying it will provide a launching pad into the region's fast paced growth.

China and Australia to coordinate aid programs

During Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard's recent visit to China an agreement was struck between the two countries to co-ordinate their aid programs, with particular focus on the Pacific.

News Night with Stan Grant, 10 May 2013

Stan Grant talks to Philippa Brant, Research Associate at the Lowy Institute for International Policy, about China's increasing amount of foreign aid in Africa.

Dr. Philippa Brant discusses China-Australia MoU

During Prime Minister Gillard's recent high level visit to China, Foreign Minister, Bob Carr, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with his Chinese counterpart on the joint delivery of aid projects in the Asia Pacific region. Although to be decided on a case by case basis, there is already agreement on their first joint project, a pilot study into drug resistant malaria in Papua New Guinea.To discuss what this MoU means for the China Australia relationship and aid delivery in the region, Albion Harrison-Naish was joined by Dr. Philippa Brant, a research associate at the Lowy Institute for International Policy.

Idea only Lefties could love

On June 27, just a month ago yesterday, Kevin Rudd was returned to the prime ministership by desperate Labor MPs trying to salvage something from the debris of the Gillard Labor-Green-Independent minority government.

Partnership likely to play out better for PNG

Some sceptics doubt whether it was, as claimed, Papua New Guinea's Prime Minister Peter O'Neill who conceived the asylum-seeker deal that has, like a slow-motion explosion, ripped through Australian politics over the past week.

Climate back on national stage

A close reading of the scientific discussion around global warming can leave no doubt that they got the basic physics right over a century ago. Broadly, the more carbon dioxide there is in the air the warmer the planet's surface and oceans will become.

Speech: Latin America Down Under

Australian mining investment in Latin America has arguably been light-years ahead of a more general link between our continents.  It is providing ballast and it is developing fast.

Hayden’s revelations applauded by security experts

Rory Medcalf, a former intelligence analyst who is a now program director at the Lowy Institute, said: “General Hayden is the most authoritative voice yet to lift the veil on the global intelligence competition between China and the US and what it means for us.

Unrelenting: a new policy

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has announced that people arriving by boat to seek asylum will no longer be resettled in Australia, but will go to Papua New Guinea.

Why Hunt doesn't make sense

In an email to my local member and cc’ed to Greg Hunt, shadow minister for climate action, environment and heritage, I argued that the Hunt/Abbott Direct Action policy didn’t meet key policy requirements.

US naval commander warns Asia on use of force

A top United States naval commander warned yesterday that growing economic power might tempt some Asian countries to settle disputes by force - remarks widely seen as directed at China.

India calls for Research Alliances

India's Education Minister admits new laws to allow foreign universities to establish campuses in India are too restrictive and instead urges institutions to develop intensive research collaborations, student-faculty exchanges and joint degree programs.

Top US Commander Says China ties 'Collegial'

The United States' top naval commander in Asia described military relations with China as "collegial" today and rejected Cold War comparisons, urging "methodical and thoughtful" diplomacy in the region

Foreign policy is Rudd's forte - isn't it?

Until last week, foreign policy was a winner for Tony Abbott. A recent Lowy Institute poll showed two-thirds of voters preferred the Coalition to look after Australia's interests overseas. 

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