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Question Time

View all events in this series

at The Wheeler Centre

Economics, Tax and Tax Reform

In the middle of the election campaign, Question Time goes fiscal – with a focus on all things economic. Series host Madeleine Morris will lead a full hour of audience questions, covering the budget’s winners and losers, election promises and tax reform – from superannuation and negative gearing to the GST, personal income tax and tax avoidance laws.

How does the government plan to rationalise Australia’s spending, and what are the likely effects on the household hip pocket? What does a fair tax system look like? What are the costs and benefits of economic reform … and, with both parties promising spending cuts, how will voters respond? 

Nut out the nation’s pecuniary progress – and untangle the complexity of public money – with our user-friendly cadre of experts: Econobabble author and Australia Institute chief economist Richard Denniss, economics professor and former government advisor John Freebairn, and esteemed political journalist Michelle Grattan.


Portrait of Madeleine Morris

Madeleine Morris

Madeleine Morris is a Melbourne-based reporter for ABC television’s 7.30. She was formerly a presenter for the BBC in London and reported from dozens of countries before returning to her native Australia. She is the author of Guilt-Free Bottle-Feeding: Why Your Formula-Fed Baby Can Grow Up To Be Happy, Healthy and Smart, published by Finch. 

Portrait of Michelle Grattan

Michelle Grattan

Michelle Grattan AO is one of Australia’s most respected and awarded political journalists. She has been a member of the Canberra parliamentary press gallery for more than 40 years, during which time she has covered all the most significant stories in Australian politics.

Portrait of Richard Denniss

Richard Denniss

Dr Richard Denniss is the author of Econobabble: How to Decode Political Spin and Economic Nonsense. He was until recently the head of the Australia Institute, and is now its chief economist. Richard is the co-author of Affluenza, An Introduction to Australian Public Policy and Minority Policy and is a regular columnist with the Australian Financial Review, the Canberra Times and the Monthly. He has spent the last 20 years moving between policy-focused roles in academia, federal politics and think tanks.

Portrait of John Freebairn

John Freebairn

John Freebairn holds the Ritchie chair in economics at the University of Melbourne. He has degrees from the University of New England and the University of California, Davis. Prior to joining Melbourne in 1996, his preceding career includes university appointments at the ANU, LaTrobe and Monash, and periods with the NSW Department of Agriculture and the Business Council of Australia. John is an applied microeconomist and economic policy analyst with current interests in taxation reform and environmental economics. In addition to academic publications he has been a consultant for the commonwealth and state governments, and is a regular contributor to media discussions of economic policy.

Question Time

When you think ‘question time’, perhaps you picture rowdy politicians cussing each other out. But in our regular series, we’re putting the dignity back into proceedings … along with a generous amount of time. It’s one full hour of pure Q&A between you, our audience, moderator Madeleine Morris, and a panel of experts in the evening’s chosen field of inquiry. Get informed about the key issues of our time. BYO hot potatoes and burning questions.

Hosted by Madeleine Morris.


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