newDemocracy is happy to disclose all our contributors, listed here. For transparency and simplicity, we show these as the total amount given over time (not annually).

The Foundation is often commissioned to assist governments and others on public engagement projects. We are fortunate and grateful to our clients for this revenue producing work. The projects are budgeted on a cost recovery basis (including research costs, which vary from project to project). Budgets (including newDemocracy fees) are disclosed in the Project Designs on each project pages.

You can read our Chairman’s and Financial Reports at the bottom of the page.

In recent years, there has been an operating shortfall, which is underwritten by an annual contribution from The Anita and Luca Belgiorno-Nettis Family Foundation of $600,000.

We would like to thank all our donor contributors for their support as we explore the merits of potential innovations to our democracy.

Donations can be made by completing the donation formDonations over $2 are tax deductible, and you will receive a receipt within one week. For any questions please email Our ACNC compliance reporting can be tracked here.

Donations can be made to support newDemocracy’s general research or to support a specific project.

A. General Contributions

Contributions over $1m

Annual contributions from Anita and Luca Belgiorno-Nettis Foundation amounting to $600,000.

Contributions from $20,000 to $150,000

Australian Unity, a 175 year old independent mutual, supports New Democracy’s aims to better improve Australia’s democratic process. The approach resonates with our historical connection with the development of Federation, and with our focus on helping people thrive.
Resolve Litigation Lawyers is a leading Australian boutique law firm offering large-firm expertise and an outstanding record of success to both corporate and private clients. Resolve Litigation Lawyers is proud to be a supporter of the work of the newDemocracy Foundation and support its endeavours to creating a better system of politics in Australia.
Google Australia supports a research project aiming to find greener, cheaper and more democratic electoral processes. The contribution comprises cash, technical assistance and pro bono use of the AdWords program.
  The Russell Mills Foundation gives financial gifts to charitable organisations to promote the arts and the principle of ‘a fair go for all’ in Australian society. Funds are directed to support production of a book to broaden understanding of democratic reform in practice.

Contributions from $1,000 to $10,000

Simpsons has built a strong reputation as one of Australia’s most highly regarded intellectual property and entertainment legal practices.
In March 2017, newDemocracy collaborated with Pollinate, an independently owned and run research agency on a quantitative study looking at trust in the Australian democratic structures and system; how everyday Australians want those structures and systems to work better; and what role they see for themselves in achieving that. The research was conducted on a pro-bono basis (valued at $5,000) by Pollinate and was widely shared by newDemocracy and Pollinate through a range of events and presentations. You can read the research report here; and watch some highlights of an event showcasing the findings here.
Karl Morris Karl is the Chairman of Ord Minnett Ltd. Ord Minnett is one of Australia’s leading financial advisory firms, catering to corporate, institutional and private clients, with a reputation for being the direct investment specialists.
County Securities Kim Slater is the Principal of County Securities. He runs a Sydney boutique financial advisory firm and is a recent donor and supporter of the newDemocracy Foundation.
Joseph O’Brien Joseph is based in Brisbane and is currently the Executive Chairman of energy-sector private equity investment firm VisIR. In addition to his appointment as Deputy Chair of the Major Gifts Committee, Joseph is a member of the Committee of the Queensland Art Gallery Foundation and a director of the Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation.
Zeny Edwards (Kimian Edwards Pty Ltd) Dr Zeny Edwards is a Fellow of the Art Gallery of New South Wales Foundation, Custodian of the State Library of NSW Foundation, and Governor of Sydney Living Museums Foundation. Zeny was founding member and trustee of the Women’s Plans Foundation, past chair of UN Women Australia (NSW) in 2012 and in 2013 joined the United Nations Association of Australia and now serves as Director of the UNAA Peace Program. Her donation is to be used for research purposes on planning, architecture and the environment to relate to her professional expertise as an Architectural Historian.
Paul Schumak
David Iverach
Virginia Pursell
Stuart Lloyd-Hurwitz
Fiona Henderson
Johanna Featherstone

Contributions Under $1,000

  • John Atkin
  • Terry Bellair
  • James Billington
  • Peter & Christine Brown
  • Ray Brick
  • Bill Burke
  • Nila Chambers
  • Dangar Island League
  • Mark Davis
  • Adrian Den Dekke
  • Ronald Evans
  • Patrick Fitzgerald
  • The Grail Australia
  • Leeor Groen
  • Tim Hobson
  • John Kidston
  • Annalie Kiilian
  • Zach Klein
  • Prabha Kutty
  • N Mair
  • Melinda Millen
  • Sunny and Annabel Miller
  • Simon Mundy
  • Michelle Nagy
  • Paul Reeve
  • Rowan and Littlefield International
  • Scott Salter
  • Iman Shame
  • Adrian John Snelson
  • P Steindl
  • Alan Stewart
  • Helen Swift
  • N Thompson
  • Helen & Tony Tribe
  • Anna Waldmann
  • Yufei Zhang
  • See World Pacific for Goheung County Group, Republic of Korea

B. Project Specific Contributions

Evidence Based Policy Research Project

The EY Foundation Australia was established in 2004 and recently aligned its vision to EY’s global commitment to helping build a better working world for our youth. This commitment extends to our Corporate Social Responsibility objectives, Reconciliation Action Plan initiatives and the vision of the EY Foundation. They have made a $20,000 donation to the Evidence Based Policy Research Project.
The Susan McKinnon Foundation is a non-partisan organisation committed to working with all sides of politics to find common ground and practical pathways to solve some of Australia’s major challenges. They have made a $72,000 donation to the Evidence Based Policy Research Project.
Percy Allan AM Professor Allan is a former Secretary of the NSW Treasury (1985-1994) and a former Chair of the NSW Premier’s Council on the Cost & Quality of Government (1999-2007). He has chaired several public and private sector boards. Percy has made a $20,000 donation to the Evidence Based Policy Research Project in each year.

Citizens for Democratic Renewal

Glenn Barnes Glenn is a consultant and company director who has over twenty years of governance experience in banking & financial services, business information, healthcare & wellbeing, body protection, consumer goods and the not-for-profit sector. Glenn is recently retired as Chairman of Australian Unity Limited and is the Chairman of Ansell Limited an ASX100 company.

Glenn Barnes has made a donation of $25,000 to specifically contribute to the newDemocracy auspiced Citizens for Democratic Renewal, a group whose end objective is to stimulate the establishment of an Australian citizens’ assembly, that is reflective of our whole community, to determine how we can regenerate and strengthen our democracy.

Public Interest Journalism Initiative

Australian Communities Foundation uses its grant-making expertise and in-depth knowledge of community issues to assist donors develop strategic giving plans and make effective grants that meet their own charitable goals and address needs in the community. It has made donations totaling $125,000 to the newDemocracy auspiced Public Interest Journalism Initiative.
The Susan McKinnon Foundation is a non-partisan organisation committed to working with all sides of politics to find common ground and practical pathways to solve some of Australia’s major challenges. They have made donations totalling $450,000 to the Public Interest Journalism Initiative.
H & L Hecht Trust The H & L Hecht Trust is a large-scale charity established in 1970. Their main activity is registered as grant-making activities primarily serving other charities. They have made a $50,000 donation to the Public Interest Journalism Initiative.

Innovation in Public Opinion Polling

In the same sense that independent budget offices exist, this project aims to test whether there is merit in a non-partisan, non-aligned polling office created for parliamentarians. Are the results of a new polling format useful to MPs and can this lead to better decision making?

The Susan McKinnon Foundation donated to cover the full cost of this project, which is expected to be $580,000.

MP and Citizen Attitudes to Democratic Reform


Major support from the Neilson Foundation - SpinalCure Australia The Neilson Foundation supports charities and initiatives which aim to improve social cohesion.

The Neilson Foundation has sponsored a research project aiming to identify the gaps in views between citizens and MPs when it comes to the efficacy and appeal of our representative system and aims to identify areas of innovation where there is a commonality between the two groups. They have made a $50,000 donation to support this research.