Behavioural Insights Trials

Applying behavioural insights to the tax system in Australia

TTPI researchers currently explore ways to improve compliance and payment in the tax system in partnership with the Australian Taxation Office, by applying behavioural insights to design innovative payment interventions and evaluating their effects by randomised controlled trials. Our work involves the development of methodological tools to examine heterogeneity in treatment responses and we combine our empirical findings with a study of regulatory and administrative processes to support the ultimate goal of a legitimate, fair, cost-effective and responsive tax system.

Our collaborative research has received funding of $345,263 from an Australian Research Council (Linkage Project ID LP160100810).

TTPI project team
Nicholas Biddle, ANU Centre for Social Research and Methods
Robert Breunig, TTPI, Crawford School of Public Policy
Sarah Dong, ANU Crawford School of Public Policy
Christian Gillitzer, University of Sydney
Mathias Sinning, TTPI, Crawford School of Public Policy
Miranda Stewart, University of Melbourne and TTPI
Yinjunjie (Jacquelyn) Zhang, TTPI, Crawford School of Public Policy

Gillitzer, C, Sinning, M, June 2018, Nudging businesses to pay their taxes: Does timing matter? TTPI Working paper no. 13/2018.

Biddle, N, Fels, K, Sinning, M, May 2017, Behavioural insights and business taxation: Evidence from two randomized controlled trials, TTPI Working paper no. 2/2017.

Arcos Holzinger L, Biddle N, October 2016, Behavioural insights of tax compliance: An overview of recent conceptual and empirical approaches, TTPI Working paper no. 8/2016.

Blog articles
Gillitzer, C, Sinning, M, August 2018, Nudging businesses to pay their taxes: Does timing matter?, Austaxpolicy: Tax and Transfer Policy Blog, 28 August 2018

Fels, K, Sinning, M, August 2017, Nudging businesses towards tax compliance, Austaxpolicy: Tax and Transfer Policy Blog, 7 August 2017

Biddle, N, Arcos Holzinger, L, Feburary 2016, Behavioural insights on the tax compliance of small and medium enterprises, Austaxpolicy: Tax and Transfer Policy Blog, 4 February 2016

Previous research
Our work builds on a partnership between the ATO and the ANU Centre for Tax System Integrity (CTSI), which commenced in July 1999. The partnership did ground-breaking research on how voluntary taxpaying cultures can be maintained and why cooperation and contestation occur within the tax system. The work of the Centre has located tax systems and their administration within the context of democratic governance where the fair and reasonable treatment of citizens is understood to be a basic entitlement.

The CTSI provided 12 early career academics with research appointments and provided a home for 11 doctoral students. The Centre hosted visitors from academic institutes around the world and produced over 180 publications.

An archived copy of the CTSI website is available here.

Updated:  28 May 2024/Responsible Officer:  Crawford Engagement/Page Contact:  CAP Web Team