Strategic economics & finance

Our research in strategic economics and finance informs government policy and provides an understanding of the causes and consequences of economic, technological and social change in Australia and overseas.

Research programs

Our strategic economics research program focuses on six key research areas:

  • growth and development
  • health and innovation
  • sustainability and climate change
  • regional economics and human impact
  • tourism and the green economy
  • education and human capital.

These six areas share the following core areas of expertise:

  • macroeconomic, labour market, growth and development
  • health, innovation and technology assessment (biomedical, ICT, energy and clean technology)
  • relevant aspects of energy and climate change
  • social economics and issues of distribution and poverty
  • regional economics and analysis, including fiscal federalism and governance
  • tourism economics
  • the role of accounting and financial services in economic development
  • computable general equilibrium modelling.

Our multidisciplinary approach incorporates expertise from the following centre and colleges:

Research projects

Research projects in strategic economics focus on developing new knowledge in areas such as sustainability, innovation, health, population growth, development and tourism.

Featured research project

Mapping and understanding bushfire and natural hazard vulnerability and risks at the institutional scale

Currently, government spending on natural disaster response is more than 20 times the spending on preparedness. When natural disasters are large and combine in unpredictable ways, they also cross domains, moving from the private to the public realm, and shifting from a local, to a state or national concern. Many climate-related natural hazards are increasing and the number of people living in hazard prone areas is also increasing. This raises the potential of future, unmanaged risks.

The spending mismatch between response and preparedness is well understood, but we also face potential deficits in important social and environmental values that may not be adequately compensated. Communities and environment are vital components of liveability and sustainability, but their underlying values are not well understood. If a risk is owned, in that who is responsible for managing the values under threat can be clearly identified, then we can assess the balance between preparedness and response. If the risk is un-owned, these values may be damaged and degraded, or lost.

The project will begin by mapping a broad range of economic, social and environmental values and relating these to natural hazards within Victoria and specific local case studies. We will explore who ‘owns’ these values and what happens when they cross domains. We will then explore how a range of alternative strategies may contribute to improved resilience by sustaining economic, social and environmental values in a changing environment. A governance framework illustrating such strategies will be created.

For more information email Professor Roger Jones on roger.jones@vu.edu.au or phone +61 3 9919 1992.

Research partnerships

Our research is undertaken in association with government, industry and research associates in Australia and overseas. Our research partnerships include collaborations with:

  • World Health Organisation
  • China Energy Research Institute
  • Department of State Development, Business and Innovation
  • Bushfire CRC
  • Central University of Finance and Economics (China)

Please contact us if you would like to collaborate on strategic economics research and deliver real benefits to your organisation, industry, government and the community.

Graduate research opportunities

We welcome applications from prospective research students wanting to undertake a PhD, Professional Doctorate or Masters by Research in strategic economics, including projects in our key research areas and core areas of expertise.

For further information about becoming a graduate researcher or guidance about possible project areas and supervisors, please contact Professor Bruce Rasmussen.

Research Scholarships

Scholarships may be available for research in this area. For further information on current research scholarships for local and international students, visit scholarships for research students, or externally funded scholarships.

Contact us

Professor Bruce Rasmussen
Victoria Institute of Strategic Economic Studies
Phone: +61 3 9919 1342
Email: bruce.rasmussen@vu.edu.au