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The Election Nerds

The Election Nerds is a regular podcast on Australian Politics recorded in the studios of radio 2Ser in Sydney, Australia. Established in 2013, the show is hosted by Doctors Amanda Elliot and Stewart Jackson, the Nerds discuss all things Australian and international politics with an array of political scientists and other experts from Australian universities. #auspol. www.electionnerds.info
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Now displaying: 2016
Dec 24, 2016

In which the Nerds take seriously the PMs claim that Australia is the "most successful multicultural society on earth" and discuss multiculturalism, its origins, politics and policy with a diverse (get it) group of guests.  The Nerds also talk about a new book on animal welfare policy in Australia

Hosts:

  • Dr Amanda Elliot, Department of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Sydney
  • Dr Stewart Jackson, Department of Government and International Relations, University of Sydney

Guests:

  • Doctor Sev Ozdowski, Director, Equity and Diversity, Western Sydney; Chair of Australian Multicultural Council.
  • Associate Professor Christine Inglis, Honorary Associate Professor, China Studies Centre, University of Sydney
  • Dr Leticia Anderson, National Centre for Cultural Competence, University of Sydney
  • Dr Peter John Chen, Department of Government and International Relations, University of Sydney

With show extras! Including a book give away. Ho ho ho.

 

Dec 17, 2016

A full length interview with Dr Meagan Tyler (RMIT University), recorded at the 2016 Australian Political Studies Association conference at UNSW Australia.

The subject of the interview was his paper, titled "The ‘Nordic Model’, prostitution policy, and women’s rights in Australia"

The abstract for the paper is:

Prostitution policy in Australia is determined at the state and territory level, consequently, there are various approaches taken across the country. Some states have introduced systems of legalisation or decriminalisation, while other states have criminalisation or de facto criminalisation, often based on long out-dated laws. Problems with each of these existing approaches have led to a number of reviews and inquiries regarding prostitution policy in different Australian states and territories since 2010. During this same time period, a relatively new form of prostitution policy has been gaining traction internationally. Originating in Sweden, and increasingly known as the ‘Nordic Model’, this legislative approach is a type of asymmetric decriminalisation: all prostituted persons are decriminalised, but the purchase of sex is made illegal. Central elements of this model include a recognition of prostitution as a serious site of violence against women and an understanding that the existence of systems of prostitution hampers efforts to achieve gender equality. Many of the recent prostitution reviews in Australia mention the Nordic Model, but have most often dismissed it as an unfeasible policy option. This paper will provide a theoretical, thematic analysis of the understandings of the Nordic Model provided in these reviews. In particular, the analysis will consider if and how the elements of the Nordic Model relating to women’s rights, violence against women, and gender equality, are dealt with in the Australian context.

Dec 11, 2016

A full length interview with Drs Ben Spies-Butcher (Macquarie University) and Gareth Bryant (Sydney University), recorded at the 2016 Australian Political Studies Association conference at UNSW Australia.

The subject of the interview was his paper, titled "The Shifting Politics of Financialising Higher Education"

The abstract for the paper is:

This paper explores the Australian innovation of income contingent student loans as a form of financialised social policy. The expansion of finance has been a defining feature of contemporary capitalism. Within the welfare state, two dynamics have seen a growing role for finance. The first involves the tensions between growing tax resistance from business and sustained support for existing and maturing social provision from the public. That tension generates a ‘politics of austerity’ in which financialised policies like Australia’s Higher Education Contribution Scheme (HECS) can provide a potential response. The second involves demands from finance markets to ‘unlock’ the relatively secure savings of households. Most advanced in housing and pension policy, this form of financialisation has extended to student loan markets in the United States. Using this framework, the paper argues HECS combined elements of a tax and a loan in ways that confounded standard accounting principles and advanced a ‘Third Way’ politics of social expansion within neoliberalism. However, by shifting the form of policy towards a financial instrument, HECS changed the nature of political contest. The paper uses recent reports from think tanks and the Parliamentary Budget Office to explore how accounting frameworks are becoming an increasingly important site of policy contest and relates this to a broader trend evident in debates over tax expenditures and public private partnerships.

Dec 4, 2016

A full length interview with Rachel Eberhard (Queensland University of Technology) and Lyndal Hasselman (University of Canberra), recorded at the 2016 Australian Political Studies Association conference at UNSW Australia.

The subject of the interview was their paper, titled "When and why governments and non-government stakeholders engage in collaborative governance of water policy - lessons from the Murray Darling Basin and Great Barrier Reef"

The abstract for the paper is:

Environmental policy issues are classic wicked problems – where problem complexity and stakeholder divergence resist resolution. In water policy, major water users (typically agriculture) need to change their behaviours. Good governance practice suggests that collaborative strategies are the best approach to resolving wicked problems that involve stakeholder behavioural change. Collaborative governance promises better policy design, greater community acceptance and the negotiation of implementation roles. Influential non-government organisations that represent different communities of interest mediate policy development and implementation through formal and informal pathways. The need to engage and negotiate water policy within and across government, as well as with key stakeholder groups, challenges the traditional hierarchical modes of government decision-making. This paper presents findings from research examining the evolution of water policy in the Murray Darling Basin and Great Barrier Reef in Queensland. Adopting a critical realist approach, the research has explored the dynamics of water policy evolution and the roles and institutional logics of government and non-government organisations active in policy dialogue. Preliminary findings document the contexts and mechanisms that have driven institutional behaviour in these two case studies. These offer tantalising insights into how policy debates can be better facilitated to support effective collaborative governance, required to negotiate the resolution of water, climate and other environmental issues that are of critical significance and urgency.

Nov 27, 2016

In which the Nerds tap the expertise of the US Studies Centre at the University of Sydney to unpack the fallout and implications of the 2016 US Presidential and down ballot votes.

Host:

Guests:

Including podcast extras! 

Nov 20, 2016

A full length interview with Professor Katharine Gelber, University of Queensland , recorded at the 2016 Australian Political Studies Association conference at UNSW Australia.

The subject of the interview was his paper, titled "Free speech and human rights in Australia"

The abstract for the paper is:

In recent years, free speech debates have featured unusually prominently in public debate in Australia. While some of these did not result in a legislative narrowing of free speech rights –an attempt to revise the definition of discrimination in federal law in 2012/13; and an attempt in 2014 to amend federal anti-vilification law – others did. Significant restrictions on freedom of speech have been enacted in the context of federal counter-terrorism legislation (2014/15), asylum seeker policy (2015), and anti-protest laws in Tasmania (2015), and in a current attempt in Western Australia to do the same. The last half decade, therefore, has seen unprecedented debate about the role of freedom of speech in Australian democracy. In this paper I will consider these events through the lens of a capabilities approach-informed analysis of the role of free speech; namely an understanding of the constitutive role of speech in individuals’ lives, and through that its role in democratic deliberation and legitimation. This approach attends to the conditions required at an individual level for democratic legitimation to occur at a social level. I will argue that the new restrictions on free speech in Australia place democratic processes of deliberation and legitimation at risk.

Nov 13, 2016

A full length interview with Dr Aaron Martin, University of Melbourne , recorded at the 2016 Australian Political Studies Association conference at UNSW Australia.

The subject of the interview was his paper, titled "Understanding political trust: evidence from survey experiments", written with Nick Faulkner (Monash), Raymond Orr (University of Melbourne) and Kyle Peyton (Yale University).

The abstract for the paper is:

For decades social scientists have debated the connection between the quality of political institutions and political and social trust, a debate ignited in large part by Putnam¹s (1995a; 1995b) influential work on social capital. In this article, we present experimental evidence of a causal link between the perceptions citizens have of government officials¹ behavior, and the trust they have in government (political trust) and others in society (social trust ¬ a widely used proxy for social capital). The results suggest the behaviour of government officials plays a distinct role in shaping attitudes towards peers and the formation of social capital.

Nov 6, 2016

A full length interview with Dr Hannah Murphy-Gregory from the University of Tasmania, recorded at the 2016 Australian Political Studies Association conference at UNSW Australia.

The subject of the interview was her paper, titled "Governance via persuasion: ENGOs, social license and Australian environmental policymaking"

The abstract for the paper is:

Environmental non-governmental organisations (ENGOs) in Australia are seemingly more politically active and influential than ever before. They have been at the forefront of recent high-profile debates on issues of national significance including the Great Barrier Reef, the renewable energy sector, factory fishing trawlers, forest conservation and of course climate change. Yet important questions about ENGOs remain: what new strategies and tactics have ENGOs used to increase their visibility and influence on Australian policymaking in recent years? How should we understand their contributions to contemporary governance arrangements? This paper addresses these important questions by critically analysing the increasingly used ENGO tactic of withdrawing or denying a ‘social license to operate’ (SLO) to various corporate actors via three recent campaigns. These include the campaigns against Gunns Limited’s proposed Tamar Valley pulp mill, Seafish Tasmania’s FV Margiris/Abel Tasman factory fishing vessel, and salmon producer Tassal’s bid to farm salmon on Tasmania’s East coast. I argue that SLO is best understood as ‘governance via persuasion’, a mode of governance first proposed by Bell and Hindmoor (2009) to capture political activity akin to ‘governance without government’ that incorporates appeals to normative values. Whilst the success of ENGO campaigners appears to support the society-centred view of governance, I contend instead that ENGOs’ SLO campaigns many ultimately enhance state-led hierarchy and therefore support a state-centric relational account of governance. This is because ENGOs in fact demand (and succeed) in bringing about greater government regulation as a result of publicising concerns about corporate actors. Employing the SLO strategy may promote opportunities for ENGOs to participate in subsequent network governance processes alongside state and corporate actors.

 

Oct 29, 2016

In which the Nerds take a break and rely on that old standard of sitcoms the world over, a clip show.  But in a special "election nerds" twist, provide clips from upcoming "podcast only" special interviews from the 2016 Australian Political Studies Association Conference, held at the University of NSW (Australia).

Hosts:

  • Dr Stewart Jackson, Department of Government and International Relations, University of Sydney
  • Dr Amanda Elliot, Department of Sociology, University of Sydney

Interviewees:

  • Joanna Vince, University of Tasmania
  • Rachel Eberhard, Queensland University of Technology
  • Lyndal Hasselman, IGPA, University of Canberra
  • Hannah Murphy-Gregory, University of Tasmania
  • Nicholas Munn, University of Waikato
  • Aaron Martin, University of Melbourne
  • Ben Spies-Butcher, Macquarie University
  • Shaun Ratcliff, Monash University
  • Heath Whiley, University of Tasmania
  • Farah Naz , University of Sydney
  • Katharine Gelber, University of Queensland
  • Kcasey McLoughlin, University of Newcastle
  • Meagan Tyler, RMIT University
Sep 25, 2016

In which the Nerds talk to environmental experts about the current state of the “big picture” aspects of environmental policy: climate change. They consider how far we’ve come in recent international negotiation rounds, what we can really expect from these agreements, and issues of democratic participation and justice in the debates.  In the second half of the show, Dr Anna Boucher joins the panel to talk about her new book on migration policy and gender.

Please note: due to a technical problem, this is a low-quality recording.

Hosts

  • Dr Stewart Jackson, Department of Government, University of Sydney
  • Dr Amanda Elliot, Department of Sociology, University of Sydney

Guests

  • Professor David Schlosberg, Government and IR, Sydney
  • Dr Ian McGregor, Management, UTS
  • Dr Anna Boucher, author of Gender, Migration and the Global Race For Talent (Manchester University Press, 2016), Department of Government, University of Sydney
Aug 28, 2016

In which the nerds dig deep into one of the largest areas of the budget and an under-considered topic in the 2016 federal election: social policy.  What's been going on, what are the tenancies of policy makers, and what are the future directions of this key area of the policy process.  We discuss employment, welfare services, inequality, participation, and the future of the welfare state in a globalised context.

Hosts:

  • Dr Amanda Elliot, Department of Sociology, University of Sydney
  • Dr Stewart Jackson, Department of Government, University of Sydney

Guests:

  • Associate Professor Susan Goodwin, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney
  • Associate Professor Gaby Ramia, Department of Government, University of Sydney

With additional post show chatter / cynicism!

 

Jul 31, 2016

In which the nerds dissect the outcome of the 2016 federal election, looking at the campaign, the state of the count, and the future of the government and management of the parliament.

Hosts:

  • Dr Amanda Elliot, Department of Sociology, University of Sydney
  • Dr Stewart Jackson, Department of Government and International Relations, University of Sydney

Guests:

With bonus post show chatter

Jul 1, 2016

In which the nerds engage in a mammoth three-hour discussion of the election, results and likely implications with all of our favourate guests and colleagues.  Including:

  • Dr Siobhan O'Sullivan Social Policy, School of Social Sciences, UNSW Australia
  • Dr Elisabeth Hill, Department of Political Economy, University of Sydney
  • Association Professor Anika Gauja, Department of Government, University of Sydney
  • Professor Rodney Smith, Department of Government, University of Sydney
  • Dr Danielle Logue, UTS Business School
  • Ben Raue, www.tallyroom.com.au
  • Associate Professor Anika Gauja, Department of Government, University of Sydney
  • Mr Nathan Lentern, The UnAustralian
  • Dr Damien Cahill, Department of Political Economy, University of Sydney
  • Dr Chris Neff, Department of Government and International Relations, University of Sydney
  • Dr Stephen Mills, Graduate School of Government, University of Sydney
  • Dr Rebecca Pearse, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney
  • Ben Spies-Butcher, Macquarie University
  • Dr David Bond UTS Accounting Discipline Group
Jun 26, 2016

In which the nerds discuss the topic of indigenous politics and policy. With Guest:

  • Dr Diana Perche, Department of Modern History, Politics and International Relations, Macquarie University

Following a debrief on Brexit, the nerds consider what issues associated with indigenous policy have been announced by the major parties, issues that have managed to come onto the political agenda, such as the issue of a treaty, and the role of the National Congress of Australia’s First People in promoting a range of policy concerns through the Redfern Statement.

Jun 19, 2016

In which the nerds review week 5 of the 2016 Australian Federal Election.  With Guests:

  • Professor Rodney Smith, University of Sydney
  • Professor Ariadne Vromen, University of Sydney

The Nerds discuss the federal nature of the debate, drivers behind localism and if the 2016 campaign is more local than previous years.  They also consider issues of political use of public funding, youth participation and policy issues concerning young people.

In the podcast extra, the Nerds consider and reject concerns about political violence in Australia, and discuss the issue of economic participation of younger people. 

Jun 12, 2016

In which the nerds review week 5 of the 2016 Australian Federal Election.  With Guests:

  • Dr Siobhan O’Sullivan, UNSW Australia
  • Dr Peter John Chen, University of Sydney

The Nerds discuss the Declaration of Candidates and the order of Senate ballot papers, pre-poll voting and the week's policy debates and non-debates.

In the podcast extra, the Nerds consider the question of party database systems, funding and funneling money, and the comparative power of parties to candidates.

Jun 5, 2016

In which the nerds review week 5 of the 2016 Australian Federal Election.  With Guests:

  • Professor Anne Twomey, University of Sydney Law School
  • Dr Lloyd Cox, Macquarie University

The nerds discuss election themes, concerns about violations of the electoral act, challenges to the Senate voting system reforms, and the means by which half-term Senators will be selected following the poll.

The post-show podcast extra content spends time talking about the comparative absence of minor parties, their wins and challenges in the campaign.

May 29, 2016

In which the nerds revisit the 2016 federal budget, examining aspects of the budget that were overlooked in the initial reporting, linking the budget with longer-term policy making and trends, identify gaps and structural defects in this most political of policy documents.

Hosts Dr Stewart Jackson and Dr Amanda Elliot are joined by:

  • Dr David Bond, Lecturer in Accounting from the UTS, and
  • Dr Elizabeth Hill, Lecturer in Political Economy from the University of Sydney
May 14, 2016

In which regular host, Dr Amanda Elliot is joined by guest hosts Associate Professor Anika Gauja and Daniel Skold to discuss the ins, outs, ups and downs of the 2016 Eurovision contest.

In the second annual Eurovision special, the hosts are joined by:

  • Dr Jess Carniel, School of Arts and Communication, University of Southern Queensland.
  • Professor Alison Lewis, School of Languages and Linguistics, University of Melbourne
  • Dr Lukasz Swiatek, Department of Media & Communications, University of Sydney

And discuss the Eurovision audience in Australia and abroad, Eurovision's push into Asia, what Eurovision tells us about European politics and society, controversies, and the research of newly minted Dr Swiatek's research on the production side of major events of this kind.

 

May 8, 2016

In which the Nerds, in an act of extreme political science insight, have organised their first election wrap up show for the very day the 2016 federal election is officially announced.  With guests:

... hosts Dr Amanda Elliot and Dr Stewart Jackson discuss the narratives shaping up the election contest, and key seats to watch given the shape of recent polling.

Apr 24, 2016

The Nerds's first show of the election season beings with Sophie Mirabella clearing the decks with her claim that $10 million wasn't spent in her former electorate, but then digs deep into:

  • The status of reproductive rights in Australia with Dr Helen Pringle from the School of Social Sciences, UNSW Australia,
  • US-Australian relations, and new research about the relationship between politics and the emotions with Dr Lloyd Cox

    , and

  • Federalism debates with Professor Anne Twomey of the University of Sydney's Law School
Mar 27, 2016

In which the Nerds explore the performance, practical and rhetorical, of Malcolm Turnbull, discuss Australian welfare policy’s function and effectiveness, and a new book on Religious tolerance and repression in the United States.

With a podcast bonus of post-show chatter and a chance to win!

Hosts:

Guests:

Mar 6, 2016

In this exclusive Election Nerds podcast extra, we talk about the new Innovation Agenda strongly promoted by the current Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. In this interview, we explore the origins, meanings, implications and ambiguities of this agenda. We ask: is it really new? and the type of policy settings that underpin the concepts.

In conversation:

Feb 28, 2016

In which the nerds discuss Australian public attitudes to asylum seekers and refugees from 1970s to today, the South China Sea dispute and the involvement of Australia in this regional fulcrum of norms-based international rules and realpolitik, and the publication of a new volume on the Australian Greens.


With a show prize!


Hosts:

Guests:

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