Economics research at the AUT Business School

Economics is the study of the difficult choices made by individuals, households, firms and governments.  It provides a range of frameworks, which can be used for modelling and understanding the problem-solving and optimising behaviour of decision makers.  Economics is one of the core disciplines in any contemporary university.  It provides the skills needed for analysing and implementing solutions to many of the critical problems facing businesses and societies today. 

About the Economics department

Members of the Economics department at AUT have PhDs from universities around the world.  They cover a wide range of fields within the discipline, including microeconomics, macroeconomics, econometrics, international trade and finance, regional and urban economics, environmental economics and natural resources, labour economics, economic development, health economics, history of economic thought, and public policy. We are proud of our established record and commitment to research excellence, high quality undergraduate, postgraduate, interdisciplinary and MBA education, and community and professional engagement, especially in the area of economic policy.

Our teaching is informed by our wide-ranging research activities. Members of the Department have published in many highly ranked, domestic and international journals in Economics.  These include: Australian Economic Papers, Economica, Economic Record, Economics of Education Review, European Journal of Industrial Relations, International Journal of Human Resource Management, International Journal of Manpower, Journal of Happiness Studies, Journal of Economic Surveys, Labour Economics, New Zealand Economic Papers, Regional Studies, Work, Employment & Society, and World Economy.

Members of the Economics Department also sit on various editorial boards and serve as referees for professional journals.  They work as consultants and provide expert advice to both private firms and government organisations.  This wealth of academic and real-world experience provides an ideal background for the supervision of student research at an Honours, Masters and PhD level at AUT.

The department has a dedicated working paper series, edited by Associate Professor Gail Pacheco, which include many examples of research projects conducted across the members of this economics group. The following link provides direct access to the working papers from 2011:

The department also has a strong applied focus and expertise with working with large scale data sets. This is evidenced with the following projects underway in 2015:

  • Labour market and educational outcomes for the disabled sector of NZ: A longitudinal perspective. This project is funded by the Blind Foundation. Project Team: Gail Pacheco, De Wet van der Westhuizen.

  • Social welfare programme evaluations (Family Start, Teenage Pregnancy Units and Social Workers in Schools). This project is for the Ministry of Social Development. Project Team: Rhema Vaithianathan, Tim Maloney and Anita Staneva.

  • Potential gains from reallocating workers from low to productivity sectors of the economy. This project is in collaboration with the Productivity Commission. Project Team: Lydia Pikyi Cheung, Geoffrey Brooke.

  • Predictive risk analysis for vulnerable children and families. This project is funded by the Department of Human Resources, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, USA.  Project Team: Rhema Vaithianathan, Tim Maloney and Nan Jiang.

  • Empirical analysis focussing on the way firms form their expectations. Project Team: Saten Kumar. This has received widespread international media and policy maker’s attention – see

  • An evaluation of career and salary progression at the International Monetary Fund (IMF).  This project was funded by the IMF, Washington DC. Project Team: Tim Maloney.

  • Improving workers rights in globalizing economies. This project is funded by the International Institute for Labour Studies, ILO. Project Team: Rahul Sen.

Detailed information about the members of the Economics research team, including supervisory interests and current research activities, can be found by clicking on the names of individual staff, which are listed below:


Professor Tim Maloney - Head of Economics Department.

Last updated: 28-Jan-2016 10.26am

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.