It is with great pleasure the Association honours Bob Buckle with the award of life membership of the NZ Association of Economists. Starting with a masters degree from Auckland University Bob has worked as an economist all his career. He has been an active member of the Association in various roles. His work as an economist has moved from private researcher through academic life to public policy (with an international dimension) and now again as an academic leader – currently he is Pro Vice-Chancellor and Dean of Commerce and Administration at Victoria University of Wellington.
He has made valuable research contributions over this sustained career, notably blending micro and macro approaches to the business cycle – an area that has for obvious reasons become fashionable again recently. His publications include modelling business cycles as well as commentary on international structural reform among APEC countries. Bob’s interest in careful, high quality empirical research is widely appreciated.
In making this award we wish to honour Bob for his service to the profession, the New Zealand public service and the Association, in particular. Bob’s contribution to all of these groups has been of the highest quality.
1. Provided numerous acts of high quality service to the Association. He has frequently refereed journal articles of New Zealand Economic Papers, and he has undertaken many functions on behalf of the Association.
2. Organised and facilitated conferences of the Association. In particular he was the convener of the large and successful Sesqui-centential Conference of the Association in Auckland in 1990. And more recently, Bob was a collected and consistently positive Programme Committee co-chair for the 2008 NZAE/ESAM Conference in honour of AW Phillips in Wellington, which produced a glittering array of speakers.
3. Provided service and leadership to the Association by serving as Council Member (1985 to 1993) and President (1989 – 1991).
Bob’s characteristic cool style, allied with quiet effectiveness, have marked all the tasks he has undertaken. He is an ambassador for the New Zealand economics profession and has mentored a generation of students through his teaching and academic leadership. More recently he brought a laid-back but logical approach to international economic relations and again proved highly effective.
His own professional achievements have been marked by the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research Economics Award in 2003. He joins a small but select group who have received this prestigious award.
The Association honours Bob for his broad economic citizenship and has pleasure in awarding him life membership of the Association.