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Asians face a “promotional penalty”  in the federal public service according to Professor Robert Breunig of the ANU Tax and Transfer Policy Insitute.

Federal public service has an ‘Asian penalty’ problem

A study has found there is built-in prejudice against staff from non-English-speaking backgrounds, meaning the senior end of the public service is almost entirely white.

  • Tom Burton

This Month

Billions of dollars is potentially being wasted by federal government departments failing to get value for money from major contracts.

Consultants banned from public service core work

A major revamp of public service outsourcing means consultants will lose out on lucrative contracts as federal agencies take their core work in house.

  • Tom Burton
ASIO chief Mike Burgess and Home Affairs secretary (stood aside) Mike Pezzullo.

Why cabinet needs the two Mikes – Pezzullo and Burgess

The ASIO chief and his portfolio secretary come from Canberra’s warrior class. Despite any personal failings, their frank and fearless advice is valuable.

  • Tom Burton

How consulting made Blair Comley a better public servant

The incoming Health Department boss has helped reform the GST, design Kevin Rudd’s carbon reduction scheme and Julia Gillard’s carbon tax. He answers our public servant Q&A.

  • Ronald Mizen
PwC Australia spin-off Scyne has been approved by the powerful Finance Department to take on the federal government contracts.

PwC spin-off Scyne gets Canberra green light

The powerful Department of Finance has signed off on the private equity-backed consultancy, allowing it to do government work.

  • Edmund Tadros
Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations Tony Burke oversees the department.

Tony Burke’s department moves to strike

Staff at the department dealing with the government’s sweeping industrial relations bill could be walking off the job over pay within weeks.

  • David Marin-Guzman
Home Affairs secretary Michael Pezzullo: the kind of brawler the bureaucracy needs.

Australia needs more public servants like Mike Pezzullo

The tall poppy who fixes government, makes it work and do things it otherwise could not is the natural target for those who want to critique policy, without openly challenging it.

  • Robert Potter


Michael Pezzullo may not return as the nation’s Home Affairs chief.

‘Trail of blood’: inside Michael Pezzullo’s behind-the-scenes world

Neighbours call his home “Southfork”, and just as J.R. schemed his way through Dallas, the top security mandarin put back channels to good use.

  • Andrew Tillett

How the 80:20 rule makes Danielle Wood more productive

The incoming boss shares her defining career moments, best advice, love of authors Anna Funder and Zadie Smith and her plans for change in our public servant Q&A.

  • Ronald Mizen
Services Australia is responsible for a range of welfare delivery systems.

Pay strike to hit Centrelink, child welfare agencies

The Albanese government is facing its first strike in an expected wave of industrial action by public servants protesting over its 11 per cent pay offer.

  • David Marin-Guzman
Department of Home Affairs secretary Michael Pezzullo’s fate is up in the air.

Pezzullo’s fate an ‘urgent matter’: PM

Home Affairs secretary Michael Pezzullo has stood aside while a trove of text messages exchanged with a Liberal Party powerbroker are investigated.

  • Andrew Tillett
Michael Pezzullo’s actions will be considered by the Public Service Commissioner

Home Affairs boss stands aside for investigation of texts leak

Michael Pezzullo will stand aside from his job as an independent investigation considers leaked text messages he exchanged with a Liberal Party powerbroker.

  • Updated
  • Tom McIlroy
NSW Treasurer Daniel Mookhey says housing is one of the the biggest problems on people’s minds.

NSW uses fund for ‘transformative’ infrastructure for truck stops

A $1.5bn fund set up to build “once in a lifetime, transformative infrastructure” will be spent on regional roads, an aged care facility upgrade, and ambulance bases.

  • Samantha Hutchinson
A depiction of a Finnish ICEYE SAR satellite taking an image through the fire and smoke of  bush fires.

Satellites that can see through smoke to fight fires this summer

Using Australian locational and building data from Geoscape Finnish satellites will give emergency responders near real-time intelligence on damage and fire path warnings across the country.

  • Tom Burton
Cyber Minister and mother of three, Clare O’Neil, wants the vendors of software and internet devices such as baby monitors to be accountable for the safety of the products.

Technology’s dangerous-by-design era to come to an end

Cyber minister Clare O’Neil is pushing for Australia to join the rest of the world and shift responsibility for digital safety away from consumers and onto software vendors and smart device makers.

  • Tom Burton
Baby monitor generic

Baby monitors are the front line for new digital safety rules

Major software vendors are to be made responsible for cyber and privacy security of their products as part of major shift in strategy to stop consumers having to bear the brunt of poorly written code.

  • Tom Burton
Linking electronic Commonwealth statutory declarations to the myGov portal and identity platform will enable a raft of services to be offered online without the need to get witnesses.

Electronic statutory declarations spell end of the passport queue

New laws mean people will no longer need a physical witness or justice of the peace to verify their statutory declaration.

  • Tom Burton
A team of former NSW officials behind the states world-leading Service NSW platform have joined former minister Victor Dominello in a new advisory firm known as Service Gen.

Robo-debt should not stop governments using AI, Dominello says

Generative AI will fundamentally change government services, hyper personalising delivery, and governments need to embrace it, says former NSW digital minister.

  • Tom Burton
NDIS 2.0 will require much greater community-based support, says Professor Bruce Bonyhady.

‘Needs’ test plan to slow surging NDIS costs

A needs-based assessment system, autistic children to be treated by mainstream services, and tighter control of service providers are part of a suite of changes being pushed by a NDIS review team to cap surging costs.

  • Tom Burton
Australia’s domestic market is highly concentrated and well above accepted measures of monopolisation.

Australia a far cry from most competitive aviation market in the world

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s claim that Australia has the most competitive aviation market in the world is not backed up by the data.

  • Tom Burton