Applied Economics

Research Area leader:

Eddie Oczkowski

Professor Eddie Oczkowski

Applied Economics is one of the strategic research areas within the Faculty of Business, Justice and Behavioural Sciences. It focuses on economic issues and government policy related to agricultural and environmental economics.

Our vision is to be a world leader in the analysis of agricultural and environmental economics issues, and to contribute significantly to Australian and international debates on public policy. By pursuing this vision we will extend our contribution to key societal issues, and develop Charles Sturt University's reputation for producing outcomes "For the Public Good".

Our mission is focused on publishing high quality work on agricultural and environmental economics issues. We aim to publish our work in high quality Australian and international journals. As we progress in our research we expect to inform the Australian community about issues of critical importance, and contribute to policy debate.  We will also continue to contribute to the education and training of highly qualified research and higher degree students.

Issues under investigation in the area of agricultural economics include the management and production of agricultural goods, agricultural land-use change, supply chain management, wine pricing and the impact of soil management practices on land prices. Environmental economics research is targeted towards valuation of changes in environmental quality, development of market-based instruments and research into encouraging participation in market-based instrument programs and incentives, and climate change communications.

Our philosophy is to incorporate a strong business emphasis into our applied economics research. While the focus within some of our research programs is on important Australian issues, such as the Murray-Darling Basin, there is also a strong international component to much of our work.

NameTitle/Position Employer if not Faculty of Business, Justice and Behavioural Sciences, Charles SturtLocation
Kevin Parton Professor   Orange/Bathurst
John Hicks Professor   Bathurst
Mark Morrison Professor   Bathurst
Eddie Oczkowski Professor   Wagga Wagga
Roderick Duncan Senior Lecturer   Bathurst
Yapa Bandara Senior Lecturer   Wagga Wagga
Richard Culas Lecturer Faculty of Science Orange
Darla Hatton MacDonald Dr Adjunct/CSIRO Adelaide
Di Girjasankar Mallik Senior Lecturer University of Western Sydney Sydney

Current Projects

Project Name Brief Description Funding BodyInvestigators
Agricultural Economics 

Engaging difficult to reach landholders in market-based instruments and incentive programs

This research seeks to identify programs and methods of communication that will more effectively reach landholders with low engagement in NRM.  Involves segmentation of landholders and testing of communications programs.

NSW Environmental Trust, Hawkesbury-Nepean Catchment Management Authority (CMA)

Mark Morrison, Jenni Greig, Michael Lockwood (University of Tasmania), David Waller (University of Technology Sydney) and Rod McCulloch (University of the Sunshine Coast)

Drought in the wheat-sheep belt of NSW  Analysis of droughts since 1900 to assess the influence of drought on the development of the economy of rural NSW. Charles Sturt Kevin Parton and Robert Tierney
Climate change adaptation Reviewing the methods by which climate change adaptation is integrated into economic analysis. Charles Sturt Kevin Parton
Optimising canal and groundwater management to assist water user allocations in maximizing crop production and managing salinisation (in Pakistan) The aim of this research is to analyse how to redistribute water use from the surface and ground water sources to improve crop productivity while reducing the salinity effects from ground water for the Lower Chenab Canal (LCC) Irrigation System in Pakistan. Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research in collaboration with University of Arid Agriculture (UAAR) and Punjab Irrigation and Drainage Authority (PIDA), Pakistan Richard Culas and other collaborators
Modelling climate impact and market variability for improved decision making in agriculture: wheat production in the Australian wheat-sheep zone. This research analyses the determinants of land use between wheat and wool (sheep) enterprises, while taking into account the possible interaction between the two enterprises. Charles Sturt Richard Culas
Management of supply chains in Australian Agribusiness Assessing the types of measures to enhance the ability of supply chains in Australian agribusiness.   Charles Sturt Kevin Parton and Ferry Jie (RMIT)
Farm earnings and succession planning This project analyses the determinants of farm profitability and succession  potential among farmers in Australia's Wimmera  region in Victoria.   Charles Sturt John Hicks, Allan Curtis, Emily Mendham and Girija Mallik
Sustainable livestock grazing systems on Chinese temperate grasslands This project engages with Chinese herders and their advisors to identify and investigate strategies to sustainably improve household welfare in grazing systems.  The project is developing a series of decision support tools that allow investigation of strategies at different temporal and spatial scales, with their findings being implemented at the herder level in western and northern China. Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), collaboration with Gansu Agricultural University, Gansu Grassland Ecological Research Institute, Inner Mongolia Agricultural University, Beijing Agricultural University and Industry & Investment NSW, 2011-2015 David Kemp and collaborators
Improving adoption of management strategies for summer perennial weeds through effective engagement processes This project establishes a national network of demonstration sites and case studies to investigate strategies for controlling Silver Leaf Nightshade, including the economics of infestation and control, and development of methods for improved rates of adoption. MLA, collaboration with NSW Department of Primary Industries, 2013-2016 Vaughan Higgins, Institute of Land, Water & Society (ILWS), Hanwen Wu and Phil Bowden (NSW DPI)
Evaluation of the Lachlan Soil Carbon MBI Pilot Program Five focus groups and a survey of 500 landholders was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the Lachlan MBI Pilot.  The project sought to identify landholders' evaluations of the pilot program, their preferred program features and their behavioural changes due to the pilot program.  A segmentation analysis was undertaken to identify, which groups of landholders participated in and benefitted most from the pilot program. NSW Trade & Investment Mark Morrison and Jason Crean (Department of Primary Industries)
Development Economics 
Impact of skills shortages in  regional Australia: Lessons from Riverina  This project aims to investigate if the impact of skill shortages vary between the sectors using in-depth case studies from Riverina region.   Regional Development Australia, Riverina Kishor Sharma, Eddie Oczkowski and John Hicks
China - Regional Growth ComparisonsThis research examines the growth experience of China at the provincial level to compare with the national level achievements. At the national level China's amazing growth has been driven by increases in labour productivity. Initially this was explained by increases in the capital/labour ratio, but, more recently, increases in total factor productivity.Compact fundingJohn Hicks
Regional labour market comparisonsThis project analyses several aspects of Australia's regional labour market:

*  Whether regional Australia exhibits structural change in the industry composition of employment and, if so, what is the pattern and magnitude of such change.

*  Shift-share analysis using Census data to analyse employment changes across Australia's regions over time.

*  Gender wage discrimination across regions in Australia.

Compact funding John Hicks, Thomas Murphy and Girija Mallik
Assessing farmers' cost of compliance with European Union (EU) legislation in the field of environment, animal welfare and food safety This project engages with Chinese herders and their advisors to identify and investigate strategies to sustainably improve household welfare in grazing systems. The project is developing a series of decision support tools that allow investigation of strategies at different temporal and spatial scales, with their findings being implemented at the herder level in western and northern China. Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), collaboration with Gansu Agricultural University, Gansu Grassland Ecological Research Institute, Inner Mongolia Agricultural University, Beijing Agricultural University and Industry & Investment NSW, 2011-2015 David Kemp and collaborators

Environmental Economics

 
Comparing Climate Change Segments across USA and AustraliaInvolves a replication of the Maibach et al. (2011) Six America's study, with additional questions to identify segment willingness to pay, appropriate methods of communication, worldview and religious orientation. Nationwide survey repeated in 2011 and 2015.CSIRO (part funding)Mark Morrison, Rod Duncan, Kevin Parton, Don Hine,University of New England (UNE) and Steve Hatfield Dodds (CSIRO)
Community Values for Improved Urban River Health Along the Cooks and Georges RiversThis project will use hedonic pricing and travel cost modelling to value improved river health from the perspective of home owners and renters. pilot.Greater Sydney Local Land Services, Canterbury City Council, Fairfield City Council and CSIRORoderick Duncan, Mark Morrison, Kevin Boyle (Virginia Tech), George Parsons (Delaware) and Rosalind Bark (Leeds), Buyani Thomy (Charles Sturt PhD student) and Weibin Xu (Virginia Tech PhD student)
Evaluation of the Lachlan Soil Carbon MBI Pilot Program Five focus groups and a survey of 500 landholders was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the Lachlan MBI Pilot.  The project sought to identify landholders' evaluations of the pilot program, their preferred program features and their behavioural changes due to the pilot program.  A segmentation analysis was undertaken to identify, which groups of landholders participated in and benefitted most from the pilot program. NSW Trade & Investment Mark Morrison and Jason Crean (Department of Primary Industries)
Valuing redevelopment of the Walsh Bay Arts Precinct This was a contingent valuation study of the Walsh Bay Arts Precinct re-development.  Several different split samples and elicitation formats were used, including a payment card, discrete choice referendum, and discrete choice referendum plus dissonance minimisation. Separate samples were also collected from inner and outer Sydney, and the rest of NSW. A segmentation analysis was also undertaken to understand the usage of Walsh Bay arts facilities, engagement in the arts and willingness to pay across segments. Trade & Investment, NSW Mark Morrison, Christine Hill and Stewart Webster
Production sharing in Australian manufacturing trade 

The aim of this project is to investigate the determinants of parts and components trade in Australian manufacturing and its welfare implications.

Compact funding Yapa Bandara and Kishor Sharma

Past Projects

Project NameBrief DescriptionFunding BodyInvestigatorsStatus
Agricultural Economics
NilNilNilNilNil
Development Economics
Changes in China-Australia Trade Composition and RelationshipTo investigate the intensity and composition of Australia's trade with China and how it has been influenced by changes in the economic structure and competitiveness of each economyCompact fundingPrikshit K. Basu, John Hicks and Srikanta Chatterjee Completed
Changes in Cultural attitudes in China and their consequencesThis project seeks to address the question of whether or not changes in culture and attitude are taking place in China and, if so, then to what extent it may have impacted their economy and economic behaviour.Charles Sturt John Hicks, Prikshit K. Basu and Chris Sherley Completed
Environmental Economics
Disaster Management This project involves research into approaches to flooding in twelve communities in three regions in Bangladesh during 2010 and one in Australia. The study adopts a framework utilising approaches in disaster management literature, particularly the phases of preparation, response and recovery, and relevant multidisciplinary theoretical approaches to disaster management organisations and social capital and will compare outcomes between the two countries. Compact funding John Hicks, Richard Sappey and staff external to Faculty of Business, Justice and Behavioural Sciences Completed
Mining and corporate Citizenship: Newcrest and the communities in the Central WestThis project assessed how the regional community adjusted to mining development.Charles SturtJohn Hicks and others Completed
Valuing Improved River Health: The Case of the River Murray Choice modelling study valuing improved river quality on the Murray River. CSIRO Mark Morrison, Darla Hatton MacDonald (CSIRO), Kevin Boyle (Virginia Tech) and John Rose (The University of Sydney) Completed
Valuing Economic benefits for the Murray-Darling Basin Plan Assessment of non-market values for inclusion in the cost-benefit analysis for the MDB Plan. Murray-Darling Basin Authority Mark Morrison and Darla Hatton MacDonald (CSIRO) Completed
Encouraging participation in Market-Based Instruments and Incentive Programs  Sought to identify the constraints to landholder participation. Developed new methodology for segmenting landholders, and designing programs. Land & Water Australia, Central West CMA, Northern Rivers CMA  Mark Morrison, Jenni Greig, Jeanette Durante (QLD DNRW), Eddie Oczkowski and John Ward (CSIRO) Completed
StudentAwardTopicSupervisor
Quoc Hieu Au MSA Contract Farming and Value Chain Efficiency for Vegetable Growers in Quang Nam Province Vietnam Dr Richard Culas rculas@csu.edu.au
02 63657590
Ngoc Nguyen Bui MSA Rice Export and Food Security in Vietnam: Policy and Implications Dr Richard Culas rculas@csu.edu.au
02 63657590
Mark Frost  PhD The nature and strength of the relationship between the real Australian exchange rate and world commodity prices Professor Kevin Parton
kparton@csu.edu.au
02 6365 7654

Dr Jammie Penm
jpenm@abare.gov.au

Sosheel Godfrey PhD Traditional domestic milk value chains and dairy policy environment in Pakistan Professor Gavin Ramsay gramsay@csu.edu.au
02 69334795

Dr Karl Behrendt kbehrendt@csu.edu.au
02 63657119

Gopal Giri DSA Diversifying Bhutan's Agriculture Sector through commercialisation Dr Richard Culas rculas@csu.edu.au
02 63657590

Professor Kishor Sharma

Keith Henderson  Hons Impact of the AUD on Australian fund managers asset allocations and strategic direction Assoc Prof Mark Frost
mfrost@csu.edu.au
02 63384455
James Karbowiak MABM Capturing value for the family farm through farm gate branding of produce.  Success factors from case studies of food producing farms in Central Western NSW.
Dr Karl Behrendt kbehrendt@csu.edu.au
02 63657119

Professor David Falepau dfalepau@csu.edu.au
02 69332566

Koena Mathekga MSA Factors Influencing Adaptation of Farmers for Reallocation of Water Use: The LCC System in Pakistan  Dr Richard Culas rculas@csu.edu.au
02 63657590
Tran Quyen Nguyen MSA Causes of Low Coffee quality in Vietnam and strategies for improvement Dr Richard Culas rculas@csu.edu.au
02 63657590
Nirmala Singh  DBA Female enterprises in Fiji:  issues of access to finance

Assoc Prof Branka Krivokapic-Skoko
bkrivokapic@csu.edu.au

02 6338 4428

Professor Kishor Sharma

Lucinda Stayley MOen&Vit Identifying strategies for Australian wine producers to increase product saleability in European markets Dr Karl Behrendt kbehrendt@csu.edu.au
02 63657119
Carl Sudholz  PhD User centered design in the development of agricultural software Dr Yann Guisard
yguisard@csu.edu.au
02 6365 7889

Professor Kevin Parton
kparton@csu.edu.au
02 6365 7654

Samir Thapa PhD Impact of the clean development mechanism in Nepal Professor Kevin Parton
kparton@csu.edu.au
02 6365 7654

Dr Roderick Duncan
rduncan@csu.edu.au
02 6338 4982

Buyani Thomy  PhD Economic value of improvements in the health of urban waterways Dr Roderick Duncan
rduncan@csu.edu.au
02 6338 4982

Professor Mark Morrison
mmorrison@csu.edu.au
02 6338 4253

James Vordtriede  DBA The effects of IMF and World Bank conditionality in Sub-Saharan African nations Professor Eddie Oczkowski
eoczkowski@csu.edu.au
02 6933 2377

Professor Kishor Sharma

Abdual Wazirzadad  DBA Evaluating the efficient use of road network in NSW Prof John Hicks
jhicks@csu.edu.au
02 6338 4234
Shana Wilkinson MABM Optimising the use of key performance indicators in Corporate Farming Systems:  relationships with enterprise scale and the adaption potential of alternate industry indicators Dr Karl Behrendt kbehrendt@csu.edu.au
02 63657119

Professor David Falepau dfalepau@csu.edu.au
02 69332566

The following opportunities exist in applied economics:

SupervisorsTopics
Professor Eddie Oczkowski
eoczkowski@csu.edu.au
02 6933 2377
  • Imperfect competition in agricultural commodity markets
  • Analysing the market for wine grapes in Australia
  • Hedonic Wine Price functions
  • Why do co-operatives fail?
Professor John Hicks
jhicks@csu.edu.au
02 6338 4234
  • The nursing labour market in regional Australia
  • Comparison of economic growth prospects in China and India
  • Economic policy in the context of Australia's regions and regional labour markets
  • Optimal transformative change in agricultural districts affected by drought and climate change
Dr Yapa Bandara
ybandara@csu.edu.au
02 6933 2960  
  • Trade and investment in the Asian region
  • Productivity and efficiency growth
  • Foreign direct Investment in emerging Economies
  • Policy reforms and growth
Dr Roderick Duncan
rduncan@csu.edu.au
02 6338 4982
  • Environmental and resource economics
  • Economic performance and governance in Pacific island economies
  • Pacific island constitutions, economic performance and governance
  • Efficiency analysis of Australian universities
  • Behavioural finance and the share market
SupervisorsTopics
Professor Kevin Parton
kparton@csu.edu.au
02 6365 7654
Orange
Discipline: Management and Marketing
  • A cost-benefit analysis of a single water authority for the Bathurst-Orange region
  • Estimating the recreation benefits for the Lake Canobolas Reserve
  • Experience curve analysis to develop projections of likely future costs of different forms of electricity generation in Australia
Professor Eddie Oczkowski
eoczkowski@csu.edu.au
02 6933 2377
Wagga Wagga
Discipline: Economics/Finance
  • Hedonic Wine Price Functions
  • Measuring the identity of a co-operative
  • Why do co-operatives fail?
  • An empirical model of wine grape demand and supply in Australia
  • Member participation, commitment, attitudes and performance in co-operatives
Professor John Hicks
jhicks@csu.edu.au
02 6338 4234
Bathurst
Discipline: Economics/Finance
  • Economic development in China
  • Regional development in Australia
  • Labour market analysis
Dr Yapa Bandara
ybandara@csu.edu.au
02 6933 2960
Wagga Wagga
Discipline: Economics/Finance
  • Australia–China trade and investment relations. What can we learn?
  • Recent trends in productivity and efficiency in the Australian agricultural industry
Dr Roderick Duncan
rduncan@csu.edu.au
02 6338 4982
Bathurst
Discipline:  Economics/Finance
  • Political economy and elections in Papua New Guinea
  • Cost-benefit analysis of a Reserve Bank in a Pacific island economy