David Giles awarded Distinguished Fellow

davidgilesOf all fields in economics, New Zealand is probably most renowned for producing top level econometricians. One distinguished contributor in this field is David Giles. Born in the United Kingdom in 1949, David moved to New Zealand as a young child. He went on to complete all of his university education in New Zealand at the University of Canterbury. Like many top New Zealand economists of his generation, he initially undertook a B.Sc. (majoring in mathematics and statistics) before completing the “Knight’s Move” to complete an M.Com in economics in 1971. He joined the staff of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand in 1971, remaining there until 1977. During this period he had a secondment to the Task Force on Economic and Social Planning. He also took a two year break from the Bank over 1973-1975 to undertake his PhD at Canterbury. His thesis topic, supervised by Tony Rayner, was “Bayesian Applications in Econometrics”.

His initial publications included contributions to the Bank’s large-scale econometric modelling project. These were published in the Bank’s Research Paper series in 1972. His first journal publication1 appeared in New Zealand Economic Papers in 1974 and in the following year he published an aspect of his PhD studies relating to Bayesian econometrics in the Journal of Econometrics.2 A number of his early published papers dealt with issues of urban and regional economics, now considered of major importance in development and growth theory, and being especially important for New Zealand.

In 1977, Dr Giles joined Monash University as a Lecturer in Econometrics, and was appointed Professor in 1978 (aged 29). He returned to the University of Canterbury as Professor of Econometrics in 1986. From 1994 onwards, he has been Professor of Econometrics at University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.

His rapid rise to Professor reflected his prodigious research output. To the start of 2014 he has written two books, edited four others, contributed 16 book chapters, and published 132 refereed journal articles (not counting review articles and a host of other publications). His publications have appeared in journals such as: Econometrica, Journal of the American Statistical Association, Review of Economics and Statistics, Economic Journal, International Economic Review, and Journal of Econometrics.

David is ranked in the top 5% of authors by REPEC on almost all their metrics, and there are currently approximately 3,000 citations to his publications. He has an h-index of 25 (meaning that 25 of his papers have been cited at least 25 times). His most cited works cover a range of his research interests covering econometric theory, applied econometrics, and statistics. His book with V.K. Srivastava on seemingly unrelated regressions3 has been cited over 300 times, and other heavily cited fields of work include his numerous influential papers on pre-test estimation, his modelling of the hidden economy across a number of countries (including New Zealand), and his recent work examining the maximum likelihood estimator of parameters across a range of distributions. He has also been well cited for his econometric analyses of the pop music industry and the demand for British rugby league!

In addition to his own research contributions, David has been active as a journal editor. He edited New Zealand Economic Papers (volumes 21-22) over 1987-1988, and has been North American Editor of Journal of International Trade and Economic Development since 1996. He has also served on numerous editorial boards including those of Econometric Theory and Journal of Econometrics. Importantly, David has been an active supervisor of post-graduate research. While at the University of Canterbury, he supervised research papers and theses by a number of students who are now prominent in New Zealand’s economic community.

His development of key fields of theoretical econometrics coupled with his applied econometric outputs, and his contributions to the development of other researchers through his journal editing and thesis supervision, underlies David Giles’ distinguished contributions to economics. Accordingly, the Association is delighted to honour him with this award of Distinguished Fellow.

1 Giles, D.E.A., 1974, “The Almon Estimator and Serially Correlated Disturbances”, New Zealand Economic Papers, 8, 138-150.
2 Giles, D.E.A., 1975, “Discriminating Between Autoregressive Forms: A Monte Carlo Comparison of Bayesian and Ad Hoc Methods”, Journal of Econometrics, 3, 229-248.
3 Srivastava, V.K. and D.E.A. Giles, 1987, Seemingly Unrelated Regression Equations Models: Estimation and
(Marcel Dekker, New York).

Dorian Owen elected NZAE Life Member

It is with great pleasure that the Association honours Dorian Owen with the award of Life Membership of the NZ Association of Economists.

Dorian gained a PhD at the University of Swansea in 1983. His first academic appointment was as a Lecturer at the University of Reading. Dorian moved to New Zealand in 1986, initially as a Senior Lecturer at Canterbury and from 1990 until the present as a Professor at Otago. Dorian’s initial research area was monetary economics. His research interests have become more wide-ranging over time, developing an interest in the empirical modelling of economic growth and development in the mid 1990s and, more recently, an interest in the economics of sport. Dorian is one of New Zealand’s most respected academic economists, having been published in several top journals. He has also served the profession in a number of ways (including, but not limited to, being a PBRF panelist, an external examiner of postgraduate theses for many New Zealand and overseas universities, and an organiser of the New Zealand Econometric Studies Group on three occasions). The award of Life Membership, however, is made not primarily for these achievements, but for the contribution he has made to the New Zealand Association of Economists over a long period of time.

Dorian was editor of NZEP from 1995-1997 (volumes 29 to 31). Dorian was a highly respected editor, having a reputation for being both fair and efficient. This was in the days before NZEP had a contract with a professional publisher. Hence, as well as overseeing the refereeing process and ensuring a steady flow of quality articles, the editor also had to make sure all articles were free of grammatical errors and were camera ready. Dorian performed all of these duties to a very high standard. More recently, Dorian was a member of the Search Committee for a new NZEP editor in 2006 and has been an Associate Editor and member of the Editorial Board of NZEP since 2007.

Dorian was a member of the NZAE Council from 1995 to 1999, serving as Vice President for a two-year period from 1997 to 1999. During his term on Council, he was also a member of the NZAE Education Trust.

Dorian’s support of NZAE goes beyond his work as a Council Member and NZEP Editor. For many years Dorian’s active participation in NZAE conferences has been a given. He has also encouraged his graduate students to attend NZAE conferences and to enter the various competitions available to graduate students. Dorian led by example in this regard, entering (and winning) the NZIER poster competition in 2010. Dorian has also been a judge for the Jan Whitwell Prize and the Statistics New Zealand Prize. One of Dorian’s graduate students, whose involvement with NZAE began when Dorian encouraged him to attend an NZAE conference in the 1990s, many years later went on to become NZAE President.

In making this award of Life Membership to Dorian Owen, the NZAE Council recognises the sterling support he has given the Association over a number of years, as a Council member, Vice President, Editor of NZEP and general supporter of the Association.

Gary Hawke elected NZAE Life Member

One of the most important roles that any member of the New Zealand Association of Economists can perform for the association is that of editor of New Zealand Economic Papers (NZEP), the association’s flagship journal. The association is delighted to honour Gary Hawke, a former NZEP editor, with the award of Life Membership of the New Zealand Association of Economists.

Gary became the fourth editor of NZEP in 1974 after a number of years of involvement with the association. He edited four volumes of the journal through to 1977. He maintained the high standard of the journal that had been set by his predecessor, Bert Brownlie. Many of New Zealand’s top academic economists, econometricians and policy-makers published articles in the Papers during this period. Many began their publications career with articles published in NZEP while Gary was editor. As well as editing the journal, Gary actively contributed a large number of book reviews. Gary also served during this period as a Council member of the New Zealand Association of Economists. His involvement with the Association has continued since then as an active participant in the Association’s annual conferences.

Gary has also served the community of economists in New Zealand through many other avenues. Contributions have included his academic roles at Victoria University of Wellington where he has served as Professor of Economics and Economic History, Director of the Institute of Policy Studies, and Head of the School of Government. Other roles have included Chairman of the New Zealand Planning Council, member of the Planning Council’s Economic Monitoring Group, Chair of the Experts Advisory Group on Tertiary Education Reforms and Chair of the New Zealand Committee of the Pacific Economic Co-operation Council.

Gary is only the second person to be honoured both as a Life Member and as a Distinguished Fellow of the Association (which he received in 2005). The Distinguished Fellow award recognised his impressive quality, quantity and range of publications in fields covering, inter alia, economic history and public policy.

It is, however, his service to the Association that is the subject of this award. In making the award of Life Membership to Gary Hawke, the NZAE Council recognises the sterling support he has given the Association over a number of years as an Editor of NZEP, Council member and long-term active supporter of the Association.

August 2013 AI (#47) features interview with Graham Scott

The August 2013 issue of Asymmetric Information is now available online here.

Issue No. 47 August 2013 contents:

  • Editorial
  • An Interview with Graham Scott
  • Citaton for Alan Bollard, Life Member of NZAE
  • From the 2B RED File
  • The Five-Minute Interview: Adolf Stroombergen
  • ‘Frames’
  • Fine Lines
  • Chair in Public Finance
  • Blogwatch
  • Statistics New Zealand: Regional GDP Statistics
  • NZEP Editor Notice
  • The Government Economics Network (GEN)
  • Research in Progress
  • NZAE Information

2013 Conference – Call for Papers

First Call for Papers
54th New Zealand Association of Economists Annual Conference
To be held at the Amora Hotel, Wellington
3 July – 5 July 2013

The New Zealand Association of Economists is calling for papers for its 54th Annual Conference. A flyer with the call for papers is available here. The conference is being run in conjunction with a symposium put on by the Productivity Hub at Te Papa on Tuesday 2 July. Abstracts for either the NZAE conference or the NZPC workshop, can be submitted here.

Submitters need to submit a 1,000-word abstract of their papers for either an oral presentation or the poster session. Full papers are not required at this stage, but for a paper to be considered as quality assured or to be eligible for the Statistics New Zealand or New Zealand Economic Policy prizes, a full paper must be submitted by 13 June.

We encourage individuals to present their research in the poster session. Some research is particularly suited to the visual style of a poster presentation; the poster session can also be suitable for work in progress and speculative research. We particularly welcome student research in the poster session.

Submitters are welcome to submit up to three papers. If we receive more submissions than we have room for on the programme, we may restrict some presenters to a single oral presentation. In that event, we will contact presenters to ask which paper they would prefer to include. This limit would apply to the number of papers presented by any one person, and not to the number of papers on which he or she is a co-author.

Please note that presenters whose papers are accepted for an oral presentation or poster must register by 16 May in order to remain on the programme. After this date, the registration fee is non-refundable. 

Important Dates:

Monday 1 April 2013 – Conference registration opens
Wednesday 3 April 2013 – Abstracts due
By Friday 26 April 2013 – Notification of Acceptances
Thursday 16 May 2013 – Registration deadline for presenters; Early-bird registration deadline
Thursday 13 June 2013 – Full papers due (entries for SNZ and NZEP prizes)

Please address conference enquiries to:

Dr Seamus Hogan
NZAE Organising Committee
Lea Boodée
Conference Administrator
Department of Economics and Finance
University of Canterbury
Private Bag 4800
Christchurch 8140
onCue Conferences + Events
63 Trafalgar Street
PO Box 1193, Nelson
+64 3 364 2524
+64 3 546 6330
Fax: +64 3 929 5512

December 2012 AI (#45) features interview with Alan Bollard

The December 2012 issue of Asymmetric Information is now available online here.

Issue No. 45 December 2012 contents:

  • Editorial
  • Obituary of Conrad Blyth
  • An Interview with Alan Bollard (read the full interview here)
  • From the 2B RED File
  • ‘Frames’
  • Fine Lines
  • Blogwatch
  • Motu: National Wellbeing and Sustainability Measures
  • NZIER Economics Award
  • The Government Economics Network (GEN)
  • The Five Minute Interview
  • Research in Progress
  • NZEP
  • NZAE Information





Professor Conrad Blyth passes away

Conrad A BlythProfessor Conrad Blyth, a distinguished New Zealand economist, sadly passed away in early August. Professor Blyth was nominated a distinguished fellow of the New Zealand Association of Economists in 2004, for his outstanding contribution to the economic profession in New Zealand. More information on his contribution to NZAE and the economics profession is available on our Distinguished Fellows page.

His obituary will be in issue 45 of Asymmetric Information, out in December 2012.



August 2012 AI (#44) includes conference photos

The August 2012 Issue of Asymmetric Information is now available online here.

Issue No. 44. August 2012 contents:

  • Editorial
  • An interview with Dennis Rose (read the full interview here)
  • Award of Life Membership
  • From the 2B RED File
  • Conference Photo’s
  • ‘Frames’
  • Motu: “Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart”
  • Fine Lines
  • Blogwatch
  • The Government Economic Network (GEN)
  • The Five Minute Interview
  • Research in Progress
  • NZEP
  • New Input Output Tables
  • NZAE Information

Sir Frank Holmes passes away

Sir Frank Holmes, a distinguished New Zealand economist and one of the founders of the New Zealand Association of Economists and the first editor of New Zealand Economic Papers, passed away on 23 October 2011. Sir Frank is the only person to be elected as both a Life Member and Distinguished Fellow of NZAE. More information on Sir Frank’s contribution to NZAE and the economics profession is available on our Life Members and Distinguished Fellows pages.

His obituary can be found in issue 42 of Asymmetric Information.

USM-AUT International Conference (UAIC) 2012 – Sustainable Economic Development: Policies and Strategies (Nov-12)

UAIC 2012 (November 17th-18th, Malysia) aims to provide an interdisciplinary forum and to discuss the practical challenges in promoting sustainable economic development by providing a platform to share, ideas, experiences and research about all aspects related to it. The theme of the conference is based on three broad themes of Economic Growth and Development, Business and Society and Agriculture & Environment.

See the conference website for more information and to register.