Filter by May, 2022

The price of democracy: how much do elections cost and who pays?

Federal elections are expensive. The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) reported that the 2019 federal election cost around $303 million to run (excluding public funding, which is discussed below). This included about $103 million was for staffing (with an additional $38 million on labour hire), $22.5 million on advertising and $32 million on post and freight. The likely cost to the AEC, and thus the federal budget, of the 2022 federal election is difficult to currently estimate. The AEC received total appropriations of around $458 million in 2021–22 and is budgeted to receive around $241 million in 2022–23. Most of the election costs will be spread over the two financial yea... Read more...

Telephone voting for coronavirus affected voters at the 2022 federal election

Voters who are blind or sight impaired have been able to vote remotely by telephone in federal elections since 2013 through a call centre service offered by the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC). Around 2,000 votes were taken this way at each of the last two federal elections. In 2020 electoral legislation was changed to allow Australian voters in Antarctica to also use telephone voting. Read more...

Early voting at the 2022 federal election: what has changed and what to expect

Australians have embraced early voting with considerable enthusiasm over the last several federal elections. At the 2019 federal election, early votes—mostly driven by the steady rise in pre-poll ordinary votes (votes before election day cast at a pre-poll or early voting centre)—constituted over 40 per cent of all votes. If the trends continue, up to half of all votes might be cast before the election day in 2022.  Read more...

Student safety: the roles and responsibilities of universities

On 23 March 2022, the Social Research Centre (SRC) of the Australian National University released the results of the 2021 National Student Safety Survey (NSSS). Funded by Universities Australia (UA) through its Respect. Now. Always. initiative, the NSSS examines the prevalence and experiences of sexual assault and harassment among university students in a university context. This includes off-campus experiences where university students or staff are present, and university organised or supported places and events. Read more...

NATO’s options in Ukraine

With war raging in Ukraine, President Zelenskyy has urged NATO (the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) and its member states for assistance. If NATO states are to adhere to international law, what options are there? And what limits are there to such actions? This article outlines how NATO has and is responding to the conflict in Ukraine and considers ways forward for the alliance as pressure mounts on it to respond with its considerable military strength.  Read more...

Trends in the gender composition of Australian ministries

As of 1 January 2021 (the most recent figures at the time of publication), the Australian Parliament was ranked 73rd of 193 countries globally by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) for women in ministerial positions in national parliaments, with women then comprising 26.7% of the ministry.  Read more...


Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament

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