Since being established in 1982, the Centre has successfully completed over one thousand consulting assignments. The majority of our consultancy reports are confidential. A selection of publicly available consultancy reports is provided below.
South Australia Works Strategic Review
The Centre was commissioned to conduct a strategic review of South Australia Works - the State Government's collection of policies and programs designed to improve work force participation. The Review finds that the State Government has an important role to play in delivering labour market programs. It concludes that the pricipal objective of South Australia Works should be to contribute to an increase in workforce particiation in order to raise participation rates, address population and demographic issues, and contribute to productivity enhancements. A number of design principles that should underpin the future policy and implementation framework are put forward. An Executive Summary, summary of the Strategic Review of South Australia Works report, and Summary of Commonwealth Programs and Funding are all available for download here and on the SA Works web site.
Local Governments' Current and Potential Role in Water Management and Conservation
This report summarises the results of a survey into Local Government’s Current and Potential Role in Water Management and Conservation. The aim of the survey was to develop an accurate picture of local government’s current and potential role in pursuing strategies to better manage water resources in local and regional areas. By Anthony Kosturjak and Michael O'Neil, April 2009.
Modelling What Works Well in SA Works in the Regions
This report is concerned with ‘learning lessons’ from selected case studies of individual employment and training projects delivered through the South Australia “SA Works in the Region” program and the Workforce Participation Partnerships (WPP) program, an initiative of the Victorian government. It is part of a broader and progressive evaluation framework adopted by SA Works in the Regions; it is not an evaluation of the entire program nor are the researchers evaluating the impact of the program (i.e. the impact of the program on employment and earnings or the net effect on unemployment). By Michael O'Neil and Anthony Kosturjak, April 2008.
Review of Initiatives Into Workforce Re-Engagement of Long Term Disengaged Workers
This research project represents an explanatory paper to assess whether lessons learned from transitioning the long term unemployed into sustainable employment through labour market programs, may be applicable to long term workers’ compensation beneficiaries. By Michael O'Neil and Peter Lumb, September 2008.
Gross Economic Impact of the Proposed Angas Zinc Mine
The SA Centre for Economic Studies was commissioned by Terramin Australia to estimate the gross economic impact of the proposed Angas Zinc Mine on the wider Strathalbyn Economy.
The mine will be located about 2 kilometres outside the rural township of Strathalbyn. It is expected to produce 319,000 tonnes of zinc concentrate and 122,300 tonnes of lead-copper over its seven-year life span. This life span may be extended if further drilling reveals additional reserves in the area.
The Strathalbyn economy is to a significant extent dependent on agriculture activities with there being little other mining activity in the region. The mine therefore has the potential to diversify the economic base of the region.
A copy of the Centre's report, which provides estimates of the direct and indirect employment and gross state product generated by the mine throughout the wider Strathalbyn economy, can be downloaded from here. By Jim Hancock, Anthony Kosturjak, Edwin Dewan and Michael O'Neil, August 2006.
Community Impacts of Electronic Gaming Machine Gambling
This report was commissioned by the former Victorian Gambling Research Panel. It considers the community impact of EGM gambling by comparing the starkly different gambling environments that exist in Victoria and Western Australia. Victoria is characterised by widespread availability of EGMs with machines located in hotels and clubs throughout the State, whereas availability is tightly restricted in Western Australia, with EGMs being limited to a single casino site in Perth.
The community impact of EGM gambling was analysed at both the State and regional level. Relative differences in gambling expenditure, employment levels and problem gambling were analysed at the State level. Four matched regions in each State were also identified and compared for, inter alia, differences in community attitudes, participation in gaming, the change in local clubs, visits to local GPs, and use of ATMS in hotels and clubs. Regional level data was compiled from community surveys udertaken to assess attitudes and behaviours relevant to participating in gambling, supplemented by interviews with various stakeholders, the gambling industry, surveys of local GPs, financial counsellors and gambling counsellors.
The report is available for download in two parts:
Part A - Community Impacts of Electronic Gaming Machine Gambling
Part B - Community Impacts of Electronic Gaming Machine Gambling
The report is also available from the Department of Justice website. By Michael O'Neil et al., December 2005.
Skills and HR Audit - Heavy Industry Sector of the Upper Spencer Gulf Region
This report considers the demand for skills in the Heavy Industry sector of the Upper Spencer Gulf Region (USG) - comprising Whyalla, Port Augusta, Port Pirie and Roxby Downs. The study was commissioned by the Whyalla Economic Development Board on behalf of Global Maintenance USG Inc which comprises a group of companies specialising in heavy engineering and an array of maintenance services.
The report outlines the demand for a skilled workforce over the period 2006 to 2010 and the demand for education and training. A labour demand estimation model was developed to provide estimates of growth in the demand for labour for the USG group of companies and for the region as a whole. The report also considers current trends in education and training effort to assess future training requirements.
The report concludes that the major manufacturing and mineral resource processing industries in the USG will require an additional 480 tradepersons and 1,800 new employees. The strong demand for skilled labour is driven by a combination of economic growth in the region, recent population growth and retirement rates for older workers.
A copy of the report is available for download. A press release is also available. By Michael O'Neil and Stephen Nelson, October 2005.
The Evaluation of Self-Exclusion Programs
This report, undertaken for the Victorian Gambling Research Panel, investigated voluntary self-exclusion programs and related initiatives in Victoria and other Australian jurisdictions. The report describes the programs currently operating in Victorian clubs, pubs and casinos; considers the international literature and theoretical framework said to support self-exclusion programs; and summarises the research team’s wide-ranging consultations, interviews and surveys with stakeholders. The report also includes a comprehensive description of self-exclusion programs operating in all states and territories.
The study found the current system of self-exclusion in Victoria is not capable of enforcing self-exclusion due to problems identifying self-excluded patrons who breach their deeds. Photographic identification at venues is problematic. Breaches are therefore commonplace and this weakness compromises the effectiveness, growth potential and credibility of the program. This is not assisted by the low level of resource commitment to the program and lack of enforceable compliance procedures within the industry itself. However, self-exclusion remains one tool to help minimise harm for some individuals trying to control their problem gambling. When supported by a range of other measures, such as appropriate clinical techniques, changes to machine design, betting limits and review of ATM locations, it is considered likely to be more effective.
The report recommends that the Victorian Government should consider a new state-wide system of uniform identification (e.g. electronically scannable card) to access restricted gaming venues which can be enforced by individual venues and Crown Casino - this is also seen as a good way to control access by minors.
The report is available for download in two parts:
Part A - Evaluation of Self-exclusion Programs and Harm Minimisation Measures
Part B - Summary of Australian States and Territories Self-exclusion Programs and Harm Minimisation Policies/Strategies
The report is also available from the Department of Justice website. By Michael O'Neil et al., February 2003.
Financing the Federation
This new study on the history and future of Australia's federal financial arrangements offers a timely review of issues in Australia's intergovernmental financial relations. The study was commissioned by the South Australian Department of Treasury and Finance as its contribution to the Centenary of Federation, and explores the economic implications of the current system of federal financial relations and its historical origins. By Jim Hancock and Julie Smith, September 2001. A press release is also available.
The Impact of Gaming Machines on Small Regional Economies
The study focuses on the Provincial Cities in South Australia to estimate quantitatively the overall net impact of gaming machines on regional economies. The report identifies using econometric analysis, those spatial and demographic factors which influence net gaming revenue. It also provides an estimate of the extent of problem gambling and the number of problem gamblers in the regions. For the Provincial Cities as a group, the report shows that the net benefit from electronic gaming machines is more likely to be in the negative, where the benefits are more than outweighed by the scale of the costs of problem gambling. It concludes that the net effect on employment in the Provincial Cities is very dependent on what happened with government expenditure in the regions. The report provides recommendations and suggestions for further research. By Michael O'Neil, Anthony Kosturjak and Steve Whetton, August 2001.