New Democracy Sausage Episode: Population panic

Photo by Ryoji Iwata on Unsplash
Tuesday 2 April 2024

Demographer Liz Allen and migration expert Alan Gamlen are talking migration and population, and the fear-based discourse that often surrounds it.

Last week we saw an attempt at rushing through immigration legislation, but creating a sense of panic around immigration and population issues has long been a staple of the political playbook.

So why is it effective? 

Where does the common sense lay in how our political class handle the complexities of this debate? 

And, as we are busy arguing about borders and immigration, what are the key social trends that are missed?

On this episode of Democracy Sausage, demographer Liz Allen and migration expert Alan Gamlen join Mark Kenny to talk ‘population panics’ and immigration politics. 

Listen here: AcastApple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle Podcasts.

Alan Gamlen is the Director of the Migration Hub at the ANU School of Regulation and Global Governance. 

Liz Allen is a demographer and social researcher at the ANU Centre for Social Research and Methods. 

Mark Kenny is a Professor at the ANU Australian Studies Institute. He came to the University after a high-profile journalistic career including six years as chief political correspondent and national affairs editor for The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and The Canberra Times.

Democracy Sausage with Mark Kenny is available on Apple PodcastsSpotifyPocket CastsGoogle Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

We’d love to hear your feedback on this series, so send in your questions, comments or suggestions for future episodes to

This podcast is produced by The Australian National University.

Updated:  3 April 2024/Responsible Officer:  Institute Director/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications