Personal Finance

Measures of happiness tell us less than economics of unhappiness

John Quiggin, The University of Queensland This article is part of a series, On Happiness, examining what it means and how it might be achieved in the 21st century. All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. – Tolstoy, Anna Karenina Money doesn’t buy you happiness, but it does…

The upside of anger: why workers should express their emotions

By Peter Jordan, Griffith University Anger has traditionally been considered an emotion to be avoided at work as it is often linked to a lack of personal control. Anger at work is often seen as unprofessional; an uncontrolled response linked to tantrums and illogical behaviour. As a result, organisational norms have tended to support the…

The world has fresh water, but it’s full of poison

By Peter Fisher, RMIT University Images of the typhoon-ravaged Philippines were terribly confronting, vividly conveying what an angry planet can dish up. But amid the destruction and death, an important point was largely missed: the world’s freshwater supplies are being degraded by a seemingly endless sequence of extreme events. While infrastructures such as dams, sewerage…

Act now on Australia’s power system or pay more later

By Lynette Molyneaux Australia has a problem with its power system that goes to the core of many issues we’re facing at the moment – increasing coal and gas prices, changing electricity usage, and climate change. That’s the problem of resilience: how well our power system can adapt to change. Right now, our power system…

Right to know: the ‘nation’, the ‘people’ and the Fourth Estate

By Martin Hirst, Deakin University We might forgive politicians for putting the “national” interest before the “public” interest. But when the news media makes the same mistake, it is time to be worried. The Guardian and the ABC rightly pursued the story of Australia’s spying activities on both Indonesia and Timor Leste. Not only have…

Feeling ripped off? ANZ class action opens debate on gouging

By Wayne Courtney, University of Sydney A bank charges customers A$35 every time customers fail to make the monthly payment on their credit card by the due date. An airline charges $10 or more for printing boarding passes if passengers forget to print their own. (Some European airlines have charged much more). A supermarket in…

TPP trade pact and surveillance – bad for business, the economy and you

By Suelette Dreyfus, University of Melbourne Last week Michael Froman, a US trade representative, took his son touring around the Paramount lot in Hollywood to visit a sound mixing stage, watch a movie and pose for happy snaps with company executives. The VIP movie lot tour, with personal touches, illustrates how close the US trade…

What firefighters say about climate change

By Michael Howes, Griffith University You do not find many climate change sceptics on the end of [fire] hoses anymore… They are dealing with increasing numbers of fires, increasing rainfall events, increasing storm events. – A senior Victorian fire officer, interviewed in 2012 for a recent National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility report. There have…

Open plan offices attract highest levels of worker dissatisfaction: study

By Sunanda Creagh, The Conversation Open plan offices attract the highest levels of worker dissatisfaction, with cramped quarters, lack of privacy and noise topping the list of gripes, a large study has found. An open plan workplace, in which enclosed rooms are eschewed in favour of partitioned or non-partitioned desks arranged around a large room,…

2 Stocks Soaring Up The Charts

Debt Collectors have the potential to do very, very well in the face of economic calamity, and here in the land down under, their prospects are especially appealing.  Conventional wisdom says individuals and small businesses get into debt trouble due primarily to some interruption in their income flow.  Layoffs, reduced hours, time off for medical…