The Accountability Round Table

We are a non-partisan group of citizens with diverse backgrounds (academics, lawyers, politicians, journalists, authors) who are concerned with the current erosion of honesty and integrity in our democracy.

The Accountability Round Table is dedicated to improving standards of accountability, probity, transparency and democratic practice in all governments and parliaments in Australia.

We remind parliamentarians and governments that they are entrusted in public office to act in the public interest.

Our 2019 Election Platforms – The reforms we want from the next Federal Government

An Integrity System for Australia

The reforms in brief:

A National Integrity System that is proactive, preventive, coordinated and cooperative  | A National Integrity Commission that is independent, has investigative powers, makes recommendations and findings of fact, can investigate the judiciary |  Parliamentary Integrity Commissioner 

see more here …

Political donations regime & election funding

The reforms in brief:

Caps of ~$1,000 on donations | Real time disclosure | Limits on election campaign expenditure incl. third party entities | Penalties for electoral breaches | A uniform political financing regime | An inquiry into best practice

see more here …

Civil society engagement

The reforms in brief:

support civic participation in the OGP | value public participation in decisions and policy | recognise the benefits of public engagement, including that of women | make policy and decisions more transparent | allow NFPs freedom of expression, association and opinion | greater collaboration

see more here

Data in politics & government

The reforms in brief:

Ban covert digital techniques of influence | remove electoral & privacy act exemptions | supervise government data collection | recognise that personal data cannot be de-identified | control profiling for political use | control government buying-in data | cover social media in advertising rules  | ban government data on-selling | citizen opt-in rights 

see more here …

Policy on the big issues – global warming

The reforms in brief:

An evidence-based, whole of government approach to the environment | a transparent mechanism to drive down emissions | government role in decarbonizing solutions | cooling off period for public officers going into the private sector

see more here …

Lobbyists

The reforms in brief:

In-house lobbyists incl. in Register | matters discussed disclosed | documents made public | funds, gifts & events declared | oversight of Code & Register by the National Integrity System | campaign donations & expenditure limits | more public engagement in decisions | Senate role in countering undue influence

see more here …

Integrity Lecture and Awards

Submissions

National Integrity Commission, OAIC, OGP

Jim Carlton Integrity Lecture, Terry Moran

The next long wave of reform - where will the ideas come from?  ART's annual Jim Carlton Integrity Lecture, was held in conjunction with the Centre for Comparative Constitutional Studies at the Melbourne Law School. In this 2019 Jim Carlton Lecture, Terry Moran...

Gillian Triggs – Jim Carlton Memorial Lecture – The Decline of Democracy in a Post Truth Era

Gillian Triggs - The Decline of Parliamentary Democracy in a Post Truth Era: a Charter of Rights for Australia. We are now said to live in a 'post-truth' era, where opinion is likely to drive political outcomes more than evidence, that expertise is a subject for...

ART Jim Carton Lecture 2016 – Peter Baume on Accountability and Evaluation.

The Accountability Round Table hosts an annual  lecture by a prominent Australian on matters of Parliamentary integrity and accountability. This year the lectures have been renamed "The Jim Carlton Lectures" in honour of the late Hon. Jim Carlton AO, who was a highly...

Invitation to the Jim Carlton Memorial Lecture 16 Nov 2016

Integrity in Public Life: The Jim Carlton Memorial Lecture Accountability: Do programs work? (and how can we find out?) Through a glass darkly .... This is the question the Hon Peter Baume will address in his Jim Carlton Memorial Lecture, jointly hosted by the Centre...

ART Submissions to Open Government Partnership – National Action Plan

The Open Government Partnership Australia has sought submissions on Australia's second Open Government National Action Plan 2018-20. The next National Action Plan is is due by the end of August, 2018. Consultation with the public is being sought. There are five topics...

IBAC Submission by Accountability Round Table

Inquiry by the Independent Broad-based Anticorruption  Commission Committee of the Parliament of Victoria into the external oversight of police corruption and misconduct in Victoria. Submission by the Accountability Roundtable Received 14th September 2017...

Open Government Partnership – National Action Plan. ART Submission 4. Freedom of Information.

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION Open Government Australia in its Draft National Action Plan includes Commitment 3.1 – Information management and access laws for the 21st century. At present the draft commitment reads; "We will ensure our information access laws are modern and...

Open Government Partnership – National Action Plan. ART Submission 3. A National Integrity Framework.

AN AMBITIOUS NATIONAL INTEGRITY FRAMEWORK Open Government Partnership Australia is developing a National Action Plan. The current Draft Plan  (as a subset of the commitment in theme 4, to Integrity in the public sector) now includes a commitment to a National...

As politicians resist a Federal ICAC, Australia becomes more corrupt

This article BY ART member David Harper, appealing for a "Federal ICAC", appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald 14 November 2018.  https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/as-politicians-resist-a-federal-icac-australia-becomes-more-corrupt-20181112-p50fib.html As...

The case for a National Integrity Commission

The Accountability Round Table through Fiona McLeod SC and Professor Colleen Lewis, has written to the Prime Minister on 1st October, putting the case for a National Integrity Commission. That letter, and its underwhelming departmental reply are reproduced below. 1...

Freedom of Information – Our Submission to Senate Committee

The Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee’s inquiry into the Freedom of Information Legislation Amendment (Improving Access and Transparency) Bill 2018 was set up following the introduction of this Bill by Senator Rex Patrick on 22nd August 2018. The Bill...

Agencies spend big to block FOI requests

 ART's Tim Smith has tirelessly pursued  the parlous state of the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, where funding has not been reinstated and one Commissioner has been doing the work of three. Tim's letters containing the arguments for refunding and...