COVID19: Getting Australia Back to Work

14 July 2020

The Menzies Research Centre released a report by Professor Henry Ergas AO and Joe Branigan COVID19: Getting Australia Back to Work that argues the costs of many social distancing restrictions, such as Queensland’s hard border closure are likely to be greater than any benefits in terms of avoided COVID19 cases. The report takes a step back at a critical term in the COVID response to evaluate the likely economic and social impacts of the social distancing restrictions and makes a number of recommendations to get Australians safely back to work.

Future Timber Hub

30 May 2020


Tulipwood Economics is currently assisting the Future Timber Hub at the University of Queensland evaluate four marquee projects.

Tulipwood Economics has been engaged by the Future Timber Hub at the University of Queensland to undertake four cost benefit appraisals (CBAs) for the Hub’s marquee ARC grant projects. The projects relate to advancing industry knowledge about the use of engineered timber (such as cross laminated timber or CLT) in tall frame timber buildings. Specifically, the projects relate to improving the safety of exposed CLT, the strength of structural post and beam joinery, and the use of lower-value wood products in making engineered timber products. Tulipwood Economics has partnered with the Australian Institute for Business and Economics in the Business Economics and Law Faculty of the University of Queensland to undertake the project.

The Future Timber Hub (the Hub) is Australia’s leading timber industry research hub dedicated to cutting-edge research and innovation. The core objective of the Hub is to increase the use of timber in large and tall commercial buildings. The Hub was established as an Industrial Transformation Research Hub that has broad industry, academic and government support, including from the University of Queensland (CFTS), Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services, Griffith University, the University of British Columbia and the University of Canterbury, Scion Research, as well as leading firms such as Arup, Hyne Timber and Lendlease. The Hub sources funding from the Australian Research Council.

Tulipwood Economics assists the University of Queensland undertake a market analysis of Australia’s rail transit and rail freight market

15 December 2019


Tulipwood Economics is currently assisting the University of Queensland undertake a major study in to the Australian rail transit and rail freight markets for a major international rail manufacturer. The study looks at several rail markets in details, such as the five major heavy rail networks, the five major light rail networks, all regional passenger rail networks and the major freight networks by commodity.

Tulipwood Economics assists the Cooperative Research Centre Association prepare its 2020-21 pre-budget submission.

5 December 2019

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In its submission, the CRC Association argues strongly that its level of funding has fallen in real terms in recent year’s. Further, that the CRC model, especially following recent governance reforms recommendation (and accepted) as part of the Miles Review, puts the CRC model in a strong position to foster innovation and collaboration between the university and industry sectors. As such, the CRC Association believes that a sustainable increase in funding over the forward estimates represents money well spent by the Federal Government on behalf of the Australian taxpayer.

Tulipwood Economics assists iMOVE Cooperative Research Centre prepare its submission to the Productivity Commission’s Inquiry into National Transport Regulatory Reform.

29 June 2019

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In its submission, iMOVE argued that the recent ICT revolution calls for a rethink of how Australia’s transport network operates on a day-to-day basis, and how the network is regulated. iMOVE proposed to build on the COAG reforms of 2011 and move towards greater utilisation of available data and greater uniformity across regulators in recognition that Australia’s transport network operates as a single system.

While it is true that there are significant differences between rail, heavy vehicles and maritime industries, there are also critical network interdependencies. And these linkages are more likely to intensify rather than dissipate going forward. If those interdependencies are not recognised, and we persist with a siloed approach to transport regulation, we would expect future productivity will be constrained and regulatory settings risk being inconsistent and ‘mode-parochial’.

Going from fragmented state regulators, to national mode-based regulators, to ultimately a single national regulator has been recognised in other infrastructure sectors. It’s part of Australia’s regulatory ‘journey’. iMOVE proposed that Australia’s reform journey, in the transportation space is not about more regulation, but better regulation.

iMOVE made a number of far-sighted recommendations, including: (i) establishing a shared governance framework and common information model, (ii) a National Transport Regulator, and an Australian National Transport Coordinator. 

Here’s the link to the report:

Ecotourism in the Post Mining Investment Boom Decade

6 August 2018


Tulipwood Economics has been working in the Ecotourism space for a number of state governments and private companies. It’s a growing industry in Australia, particularly in Tasmania, but has enormous potential in Tropical North Queensland.

We recently completed a report for the Queensland Government reviewing the Tasmanian success story in ecotourism. And we are currently working with our partners Aurecon and PWC looking at ways to grow ecotourism in the beautiful Whitsundays.

Supply Chain Efficiency

6 August 2018


At the SMART Infrastructure Facility, Joe has been working with Ben Ellis, a highly respected transport economist and Partner at KPMG on identifying representative supply-chains in the Australian economy for the Bureau of Industry Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE). This is a fascinating project and should hopefully, with better information, underpin improvements in supply-chain investment in Australia.