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T J Ryan statue Queens Gardens, Brisbane. (Image by 'Lachrymosus' 2005, courtesy Wikicommons images)

The TJ Ryan Foundation is a progressive think tank focussing on Queensland public policy. The aims of the Foundation are to stimulate debate on issues in Queensland public administration and to review policy directions of current and past State governments on economic, social and cultural issues. This website focuses on evidence-based policy, and provides links to a range of public accessible online resources.


In 1989 The Fitzgerald Report considered the role of Parliament, including the Speaker:

Because of its necessary numerical strength, the Government in a parliamentary democracy is obviously able to change or ignore the rules.  In these circumstances the authority and neutrality of the 'referee' is of critical importance.

With the spotlight on Bronwyn Bishop's performance as Speaker in Canberra, Roger Scott considers the role of the Speakers in the Queensland Parliament since 1989, concluding that 'For once, Queenslanders can be proud of being different'. 

On Monday 27 July 2015 a lunch was held at Parliament House to commemorate the passing of the Act, instigated by Premier T J Ryan, granting women the right to stand for the Queensland Parliament.  The guest of honour was Premier, the Hon Annastacia Palaszczuk.  Aunty Lynne Matsen, gave the welcome to country, noting that Indigenous women did got achieve the right to stand until the 1960s.  

Professor Anne Tiernan gave the keynote address (see The Machinery of Government blog) in which she reflected on the experience and achievements of women in the Queensland Parliament over the past century. The State's record of representative women has been better than the national parliament.  Today, women comprise the majority of the Palaszczuk Cabinet, and Palaszczuk is Queensland's second female premier and Australia's first female premier elected from opposition.  

Educationist, Carol Nicoll, and political scientist, Roger Scott, have responded to issues raised in The Conversation's series 'What are universities for?', by considering how to widen the impact of academic research - each focussing on their own academic field, see:

Education Academics: Rules of Engagement and 

Political Scientists and engagement

The Adam Goodes ‘boo-ing’ saga has been a remarkable confrontation between two values apparently central to the self-image of white Australians – the individual right to be fanatical about sport and the communal tolerance of cultural difference.  

Two Indigenous perspectives are provided here, one by Stan Grant, ‘Estranged in the land of their ancestors, living on the fringes of a rich society’ and the other by TJRyan Research Associate, Marcus Woolombi Waters, We all know and admire the haka so why not one of our own.

The Budget brought down by Treasurer Curtis Pitt has been described as 'no surprises, no big hits, and that's what business wants'.  The budget contained a raft of measures, many of which were given little publicity.  We have therefore provided links to the media releases over the past week.

In The Conversation (17.7.15) Michelle Grattan wrote: 'Recently a broad range of organisations formed the Australian Climate Roundtable. ... They agreed the next phase of policy development on the climate issue should be “as civil and constructive as possible”.

'We can be confident that’s what ordinary voters would want – and equally sure it will be anything but.'

TJ Ryan Foundation Research Reports

Dr Jon Stanford writes that the great majority of gas production in Queensland is now CSG, an industry dominated by four large companies. The level of foreign ownership is high. 'Once more, as in mining coal, the benefits of extracting CSG have largely escaped residents of Queensland.' 

The 2012-15 Queensland LNP government, as part of its law and order focus, introduced 'boot camps' for young people in the Queensland youth justice system.  Funding to restorative justice models such as youth conferencing, police warnings and specialist diversion courts were either ceased or reduced. Professor Mary Sheehan and Consuelo Reed argue the that the high levels of incarceration of Indigenous people and of youth suicide indicates that there is a need to look at policies of youth incarceration and rehabilitation. 

Dr Chris Salisbury examines what the Borbidge/Sheldon review of the LNPs election campaign tells us, and what didn’t it tell us, about the Newman government.

Dr Lyndon Megarrity writes that between 1859 and 1915, politicians espousing progressive liberal values had incrementally raised the expectations of Queensland electors about the role which government could play in the social, industrial, electoral and economic affairs of citizens.

Dr Linda Colley looks at union encouragement clauses, where they came from, and in what context they are now gaining media attention.

Earlier TJRyan Research Reports can be found through this link

ANSOG / Centre for Governance and Public Policy blog on the Machinery of Government.


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