Energy and resource economics
Our research in energy and resource economics is centred on the application of economics and econometric methods to contemporary energy, resource, transport and environmental problems.
The department has an active group of researchers working on energy, environmental and resource economics issues. Much of this work is carried out under the aegis of the multi-disciplinary Energy Centre based in the Economics Department.
The Centre has strong links to the School of Engineering and the Faculty of Science. It nurtures active cooperation with other university disciplines and groups, including the Electricity Power Optimization Centre (EPOC), the Electric Power Systems Group, the Transport Research Centre, and the New Zealand Centre for Supply Chain Management.
The Energy Centre was founded in late 2004 and is part-funded by a private trust and other industry partners.
Examples of research capabilities in this area are:
- Economics of network industries - Regulation and design of electricity markets, and government procurement of peak generating capacity in the electricity market.
- The relationship between urban form and transport - Transport demand and infrastructure.
- The design of rights-based systems of governance - For example, in fisheries and water resources and, more recently, relating to climate change.
- Spatial econometrics - Modelling of risk, environmental attributes, and firm-location decisions.
- Public finance issues in natural resource extraction - The optimal design of resource extraction contracts under informational asymmetries between the resource owner and the extractive firms.