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Grattan Institute is an Australian public policy think tank, established in 2008. The Melbourne-based institute is non-aligned, however it defines itself as contributing "to public policy in Australia as a liberal democracy in a globalised economy." It is funded by an $34 million endowment, with major contributions from the Australian Federal Government, the State Government of Victoria, the University of Melbourne and BHP Billiton.
Grattan Institute currently focuses on seven key policy areas: Budget Policy, Transport, Energy, Health, Schools Education, Higher Education and Productivity. These programs were chosen with the belief that research into these areas, in line with principles of evidence-based policy could make a demonstrable difference to Australia’s public policy. Grattan Institute also makes provision for experts in other fields to work under its umbrella.
Grattan Institute began with pressure from senior figures in the Victorian Public Service, academic institutions, and broader business and non-government leaders, who believed that Australian political life lacked a heavyweight independent think tank.
Through the course of 2005 this idea was fleshed out by several people in the Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet, including discussions with a number of Australia’s corporate leaders.
At the end of 2005 the Victorian Premier, Steve Bracks, met with the Federal Treasurer Peter Costello to define the theme for the think tank: Australia as a liberal democracy in a globalised economy. The phrase has since been enshrined in the Constitution of Grattan Institute.
Links between Melbourne University, Victorian Government and corporate Australia, along with a supportive report from McKinsey and Company, were the basis for then Victorian Premier Bracks and Treasurer Brumby in early 2007 to promise significant Victorian Government funding for the idea. Melbourne University was also asked to assist.
In April 2008, Commonwealth and Victorian Governments announced matching funding, along with support in kind from the University of Melbourne. Commitments followed soon after from BHP Billiton and National Australia Bank. Grattan receives money from its affiliates, which include Google, Origin Foundation, EY, GE Australia and New Zealand, Price Waterhouse Coopers, Stockland, The Scanlon Foundation, Wesfarmers, Jacobs, Mercy Health, Urbis and Westpac. The Higher Education Program is funded by the Myer Foundation.
Grattan Institute was incorporated in November 2008, and its first Chief Executive, John Daley, commenced in January 2009.
A list of Grattan's reports to date can be found here
- CEO - John Daley
- Program Heads
Board of directors
- Ruth Williams. "Well-heeled think tank vows to be ideology free". The Age. November 10, 2008.
- "Grattan Programs".
- "New International Think Tank for Victoria". The Premier of Victoria. Press Release. May 1, 2008.
- "Inaugural Director/CEO of the Grattan Institute Appointed". Melbourne University Staff and Student News. November 19, 2008.