ARC grants pave the way for BEL research impact

Improving health system planning and reforming how we solve human rights complaints are the focus of just two of the UQ Faculty of Business, Economics and Law research projects that have secured federal government funding.

Six Faculty-led projects and three externally led projects involving BEL researchers received 2022 Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Project funding.

BEL Faculty Associate Dean (Research) Professor Martie-Louise Verreynne said the recipients would address some of the nation’s most pressing economic, social and environmental challenges.

“We look forward to seeing the outcomes and impact of their research,” she said.

This year, more than 35 per cent of BEL Discovery Project grant applications received funding, which is significantly above the overall ARC success rate of 19 per cent.

“Notably, the School of Economics and CBEH succeeded in securing four of only 13 economics projects nationally, making UQ the most awarded university in this area,” Professor Verreynne said.

A project led by the Law School’s Professor Tamara Walsh also received ARC Linkage Project funding, which will see Professor Walsh collaborate with a Monash University colleague, industry partners from the legal sector and several human rights commissions.

ARC grants awarded to Law School researchers

Discovery Projects

Project title: Constituent power in federal constitutions

This research aims to better understand the ways federal constitutions are adopted and approved by ‘the people’ of the country – both the multiple peoples of the constituent states and the singular people of the federation. A clearer understanding of these issues will influence the way governments and the courts apply and interpret federal constitutions, including the Australian constitution. It will also contribute to discussion about the roles of the people(s) in constitutional amendment and reform.

Recipients: Professor Nicholas Aroney (UQ Law School), Associate Professor George Duke (Deakin University), Professor Stephen Tierney (University of Edinburgh)

Linkage Projects

Professor Tamara Walsh
Professor Tamara Walsh

Project title: Australian human rights complaints: litigation, mediation or conciliation

This project will be the first to assess the effectiveness of the mechanisms used to resolve human rights complaints in Australia – conciliation, mediation and litigation. Working with legal sector partners and four human rights commissions, the researchers will generate new knowledge on human rights complaints and the views of key stakeholders about these resolution mechanisms. This research will inform legal and policy reform throughout Australia and help develop a strong evidence-based model for human rights dispute resolution.

Recipients: Professor Tamara Walsh (UQ Law School), Associate Professor Dominique Allen (Monash University), and partner organisations the Australian Human Rights Commission, Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission, Queensland Human Rights Commission, ACT Human Rights Commission, Caxton Legal Centre Inc, and Canberra Community Law Ltd

ARC Discovery Project grants awarded to School of Economics researchers

Project title: Voter behaviour and polarisation: the role of social preferences

This research will investigate how social concerns, like altruism and peer pressure, affect whether people vote and how they vote. The results will reveal how factors such as social media may affect electoral outcomes and political polarisation. Australia prioritises fair democratic processes, as demonstrated by its compulsory voting system. The researchers hope to protect the integrity of those processes by shedding light on how modern social institutions affect political choices.

Recipients: Associate Professor Marco Faravelli (UQ School of Economics), Dr Vera te Velde (UQ School of Economics)

Professor Alicia Rambaldi
Professor Alicia Rambaldi

Project title: Measuring the commercial real estate sector in Australia

This project will bridge the gap in our understanding of the Australian commercial real estate sector. The researchers will develop a suite of commercial real estate price indexes by region and property type, and a comprehensive analysis of the methods used to construct them. Their work will better inform market participants and guide statistical agencies in developing such measures. It will also help policymakers, banks, super funds and macroprudential authorities understand the risk profile of the sector.

Recipients: Dr Daniel Melser (Monash University), Professor Alicia Rambaldi (UQ School of Economics), Professor Robert Hill (University of Adelaide) – project led by Monash University

Project title: Managing carbon offsets to improve Australian climate policy effectiveness

This project will evaluate Australia’s flagship climate policy, the Emissions Reduction Fund, using state-of-the-art theoretical and experimental economic methods. Expected results include a clear understanding of how to redesign the regulatory system to deliver better environmental outcomes for less public funds. These insights should help both federal and state Australian policymakers – and policymakers worldwide – with designing and implementing carbon offsetting systems.

Recipients: Associate Professor Lana Friesen (UQ School of Economics), Associate Professor Ian MacKenzie (UQ School of Economics), Professor Anthony Heyes (University of Exeter and Ottawa)

Project title: Supporting entry and growth of Australian businesses via tax and transfers

This project will determine the best tax treatment of business income for insurance and efficiency purposes. Using new Australian data, the researchers will identify key causes of business creation, growth and exit – before and after COVID-19 – and develop original macroeconomic models. Their insights will help policymakers create fiscal policies that stimulate business growth by balancing public insurance and income inequality concerns. The researchers hope their work will promote Australia’s post-pandemic recovery through a fairer, more efficient business tax and transfer system.

Recipients: Professor Begoña Dominguez (UQ School of Economics), Dr Andres Bellofatto (UQ School of Economics)

Project title: Understanding macroeconomic fluctuations with unobserved networks

This research aims to help policymakers identify what causes fluctuations in economic growth or employment at the aggregate level. The project will develop a practical approach for designing cheaper and more effective economic policies. If policymakers know a recession is mainly driven by a shock affecting one industry, they can use this approach to target stabilisation measures to that industry – rather than all sectors.

Recipients: Professor Valentyn Panchenko (UNSW), Professor James Morley (University of Sydney), Dr Christiern Rose (UQ School of Economics), Dr Jorge Miranda-Pinto (UQ School of Economics), Professor Dr Dick van Dijk (Erasmus University Rotterdam) – project led by UNSW

Forgan Smith Building, UQ St Lucia

ARC Discovery Project grants awarded to Business School researchers

Project title: Turning crises into opportunities: learning from high growth businesses

This project will investigate how we can turn crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic into opportunities. It will analyse and provide practical insights into the strategic crises responses of business ventures that managed to defy the odds and achieve high growth. The project will help policymakers and entrepreneurs improve economic resilience and foster sustainable economic growth and contribute to core areas of entrepreneurship and management research.

Recipients: Dr Frederik von Briel (UQ Business School), Professor Per Davidsson (QUT), Adjunct Professor Jan Recker (University of Cologne)

Project title: The psychology of gridlock: compromise, coalitions, and radicalisation

Society is facing urgent challenges from multiple fronts, but history has shown the inability of groups of people to adapt quickly to face them, bogged down by grinding stalemates. ‘Gridlock’ refers to these stalemates when conflict between stakeholders makes them unable to address urgent problems. The goal of this research is to better understand the psychological processes that lead to collective gridlock and introduce strategies to help collectives escape it.

Recipients: Professor Winnifred Louis (UQ School of Psychology), Professor Matthew Hornsey (UQ Business School), Professor Kelly Fielding (UQ School of Communication and Arts and UQ School of Psychology), Professor Emma Thomas (Flinders University), Professor Catherine Amiot (Université du Québec à Montréal), Professor Fathali Moghaddam (Georgetown University) – project led by other UQ faculties

ARC Discovery Project grants awarded to the Centre for the Business and Economics of Health researchers

Project title: Incorporating the gains from healthy ageing in health system planning

Current methods for planning future healthcare expenses, providers and services are based on projecting our current situation onto the expected future size and age mix of the population. This approach fails to allow for expected changes in population needs arising from, for example, healthy ageing. This research will help decision-makers use healthcare planning models that respond to changes in needs over time and meet future requirements for care.

Recipients: Professor Stephen Birch (CBEH), Professor Luke Connelly (CBEH), Dr William Whittaker (University of Manchester)

Contact: BEL Communications team

Last updated:
29 August 2023