The first issue of Viewpoint Magazine for 2012 is out now. This edition takes an in depth look at the state of the economy both here within Australia and internationally. It goes behind the headlines to come to grips with what has brought much of the Western world to the brink of economic collapse; and more importantly what society can do about it.

Professor Steve Keen from the University of Western Sydney provides a fascinating insight into the causal factors of the USA’s and Europe’s economic woes while Associate Professor Gordon Menzies from the University of Technology Sydney examines why Australia has mainly escaped and what can be done to enhance the nation's chances it stays that way.

In Australia's quest for baseload power with lower emissions, Coal Seam Gas is one of the most prominent, and contentious, solutions on offer. The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) and Dr Marion Carey from Monash University present very different perspectives on this energy source. With protests across the country, and the impact that CSG is having on state politics, the implications are nationally significant.

This edition also explore factors that affect Australians’ hip pockets – gambling (Rev Tim Costello), the housing crisis (Toby Hall), chronic disadvantage (Ruth Limkin) and fragile families (Professor Patrick Parkinson) – which have large knock on effects for our domestic economy.

The ACL's new editor of Viewpoint Magazine, Sarah Cleaves, is interested to learn what people love about the publication and how the ACL can improve it. Please take 5 – 10 minutes to complete the survey – this will help the ACL to design a magazine that meets the readerships' interests and needs. Please log onto the following website or call Peter Toms at the ACL office (02 6259 0431) who can organise to mail a survey out.

New subscriptions for Viewpoint can be done online at or by telephoning Peter Toms at the ACL office (02 6259 0431).