The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) provides cover for Australians with a severe disability, and represents a transition to a new model and market for service delivery that will substantially change the nature, focus, and funding of disability support service delivery. The NDIS has been described as a once in a generation reform, highlighting the scale and complexity of the reform. As a result, it offers significant opportunities for learning with regard to policy implementation and public sector management.
In the decades since Australia last implemented a reform of this scale, the way governments operate has undergone profound shifts. Centralised, top-down approaches to governing have been abandoned due to the emergence of complex policy networks2. Now, policy actors across Commonwealth and State governments, the private sector and community organisations are tied together in policy networks and quasi public service markets. This presents a far more challenging reform environment for the implementation of major reforms such as the NDIS. At present, our knowledge of how these networks of actors work to facilitate or prevent change when implementing large-scale complex social protection reforms is extremely limited.
This stream of work includes a range of projects and methods to investigate the implementation of the NDIS.