Implications of falling trust for Australia’s politics and society

by Danielle Wood


Trust in government is the lowest on record in Australia. In this presentation Danielle Wood, the director of Grattan Institute’s Institutional Reform Program, identifies several causes, including numerous failures of policy, serial changes of leader, the pervasive influence of vested interests, and the self-interest of too many politicians. She nominates several implications: a rise in the minor-party vote makes majority government less likely; lower trust makes it harder for government to propose and implement difficult reforms; and low trust in politicians and the political process erodes the very fabric of democracy. Danielle also proposes some solutions, including publishing ministerial diaries and reforming the rules that govern political donations and lobbying.

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