I am a PhD student at the Australian National University, looking at agenda setting and responsiveness. I have previously spent 15 years in the Australian Public Service (APS) as a senior policy officer, working on a range of social policy issues.
I am developing a new dataset on the volume and topics of letters from members of the public to the Australian Prime Minister. Writing to political leaders is also a key part of political participation, with the Prime Minister receiving around 150,000 letters each year. Despite the important role that correspondence plays, there have not been any detailed studies of the topics of these letters. This dataset beings to fill this gap. Uniquely, it also uses administrative data, sourced from the National Archives of Australia, rather than survey data. These letters remain an unexplored channel of public opinion and the public agenda. Unlike opinion polls, this channel is delivered directly to political leaders.
Letters to political executive
Casey, D. (2022), Dear Prime Minister: Letters to Robert Menzies 1949–1966. By Lyons, Martyn ( Sydney: UNSW Press, 2021), pp. vi + 266. AU$39.99 (pb).. Aust J Politics Hist. https://doi.org/10.1111/ajph.12794
Casey, D. (2006). Managing and sustaining the APS workforce: a graduate perspective. Public Administration Today, (6), 35-36.