John Quiggin

John Quiggin (born 29 March 1956) is an Australian economist, a Professor at the University of Queensland. He was formerly an Australian Research Council Laureate Fellow and Federation Fellow and a Member of the Board of the Climate Change Authority of the Australian Government.[1][2][3][4]

John Quiggin
Born (1956-03-29) 29 March 1956
Adelaide, South Australia
InstitutionUniversity of Queensland
James Cook University
Australian National University
University of Sydney
University of Maryland
Queensland University of Technology
University of Adelaide
Johns Hopkins University
FieldAgricultural economics, Resource economics
School or
Keynesian economics
Alma materUniversity of New England (PhD)
Australian National University (B.A., B.Econ., M.Econ)
ContributionsUtility theory


Quiggin completed his undergraduate studies at the Australian National University graduating with a Bachelor of Arts with First Class Honours in Mathematics in 1978 and a Bachelor of Economics with First Class Honours with the University Medal and the Economics Society Prize in 1980. He then completed a Master of Economics through coursework and thesis at the Australian National University in 1984, and finished his Doctor of Philosophy in Economics at the University of New England in 1988, receiving the Drummond Prize for best doctoral thesis.

Academic and professional career

From 1978 to 1983 Quiggin was a Research Economist and in 1986 was the Chief Research Economist with the Bureau of Agricultural Economics what was of the predecessor of the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics of the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. From 1984 to 1985 he was a Research Fellow of the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies at the Australian National University. From 1987 to 1988 he was a Lecturer and then Senior Lecturer in the Department of Agricultural Economics of the University of Sydney. In 1989 he was a Visiting Fellow at the Centre for International Economics, a consultancy firm in Canberra.

From 1989 to 1990 he was an Associate Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics of the University of Maryland, College Park, a Fellow of the Research School of Social Sciences of Australian National University from 1991 to 1992, a Senior Fellow from 1993 to 1994 and a Professor in 1995 at the Centre for Economic Policy Research of the Australian National University in 1995. From 1996 to 1999 Quiggin was a Professor of Economics and Australian Research Council Senior Fellow at James Cook University. From 2000 to 2002 he was an Australian Research Council Senior Fellow at the Australian National University and an Adjunct Professor at the Queensland University of Technology and the Inaugural Don Dunstan Visiting Professor at the University of Adelaide.

He has been based at the University of Queensland since 2003, being an Australian Research Council Professorial Fellow and Federation Fellow and a Professor in the School of Economics and the School of Political Science and International Studies. He was an Adjunct Professor at the Australian National University from 2003 to 2006 and was the Hinkley Visiting Professor at Johns Hopkins University in 2011.[5]

Other work

Quiggin writes a blog,[6] and is a regular contributor to Crooked Timber.[7] Until April 2015, he was a Fellow at the Centre for Policy Development.[8] He was an opinion columnist for the Australian Financial Review from 1996 until March 2012.

As of 2015, Quiggin opposed Bitcoin, calling it a "delusion" that would lead to "environmental disaster" due to the "ever-increasing environmental damage from the electricity used in the 'mining' of Bitcoins" and that "The sooner this collective delusion comes to an end, the better." [9]

His most recent book, Zombie Economics: How Dead Ideas Still Walk among Us, was published in October 2010 from Princeton University Press.[10]

He was appointed in 2012 to the Board of the Climate Change Authority of the Australian Government.[1]

With reference to the pro-nuclear film Pandora's Promise, Quiggin comments that it presents the environmental rationale for nuclear power, but that reviving nuclear power debates is a distraction, and the main problem with the nuclear option is that it is not economically-viable. Quiggin says that we need more efficient energy use and more renewable energy commercialisation.[11]


Quiggin is one of the most prolific economists in Australia, illustrated by his output over diverse, high-quality journals[12] and by citation frequencies in the period 1988–2000.[13] He has been placed in the top 5% economists in the world according to IDEAS/RePEc since its monthly aggregate rankings began in 2004.[14][15][16] Quiggin has frequently been awarded and recognised for his research, including twice receiving Federation Fellowships from the Australian Research Council.[17]

He was awarded the Australian Social Science Academy Medal in 1993 and a Fellowship in 1996, received the 1997 and 2000 Sam Richardson of the Institute of Public Administration, Australia, received the 2001 Editors Prize of the Australian Journal of Agricultural Economics, a Fellowship of the Australian Institute of Company Directors in 2002, and a Distinguished Fellowship of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society in 2004. He is a Fellow of the Econometric Society[18] and in 2011 received the Distinguished Fellow Award of the Economic Society of Australia.[19]

Selected works

  • 1994. Work for All: Full Employment in the Nineties, Melbourne University Press, Carlton, ISBN 0-522-84641-6 (ed., with John Langmore) TOC.
  • 1996. Great Expectations: Microeconomic Reform and Australia, Allen & Unwin, Sydney, ISBN 1-86448-236-2
  • 1998. Taxing Times: A Guide to the Tax Debate in Australia, UNSW Press, Sydney, ISBN 0-86840-441-1
  • 1998. "Social Democracy and Market Reform in Australia and New Zealand," Oxford Review of Public Policy, 14(1), pp. 79–109, also in A. Glyn (ed.), 2001, Social Democracy in Neoliberal Times: The Left and Economic Policy since 1980, Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp. 80–109. ISBN 0-19-924138-4.
  • 2000. Uncertainty, Production, Choice, and Agency: The State-Contingent Approach, Cambridge University Press, New York, ISBN 0-521-62244-1 (with Robert G Chambers) Description and preview.
  • 2001. "Demography and the New Economy," Journal of Population Research, 18(2), p p. 177–193.
  • 2010. Zombie Economics:How Dead Ideas Still Walk among Us. Princeton University Press, ISBN 0-691-14582-2 Description TOC, and Introduction.
  • 2012. "Prospects of a Keynesian utopia", Aeon Magazine, 27 September 2012


  1. The Australian Climate Change Authority board announced. 21 June 2012
  2. "John Quiggin Profile". The National Interest. 2012.
  3. Helen Davidson, (23 March 2017), Two quit Australian climate authority blaming government 'extremists', The Guardian. Retrieved 4 September 2017
  4. David Lipson, (24 March 2017), Interview: John Quiggin, Lateline, Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 4 September 2017
  5. Official CV of John Quiggin
  6. John Quiggin's Blog
  7. The Crooked Timber Blog.
  8. Statement on resignation from CPD and alternative: public statement by Mark Bahnisch, Eva Cox and John Quiggin, (24 April 2015), The New Social Democrat accessed 24 April 2015
  10. "Zombie Economics: How Dead Ideas Still Walk among Us" Archived 25 June 2010 at the Wayback Machine ISBN 978-1-4008-3598-0
  11. John Quiggin (8 November 2013). "Reviving nuclear power debates is a distraction. We need to use less energy". The Guardian.
  12. Per a Google Scholar search of "John Quiggin".
  13. Sinha, Dipendra & Macri, Joseph, ""Rankings of Economists in Teaching Economics Departments in Australia, 1988–2000, Economics Bulletin, Vol. 1, No. 4, pp. 1–19" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 November 2007. Retrieved 11 October 2007.
  14. Top 10% Authors, Current Monthly Rankings at RePEc (Research Papers in Economics)
  15. Aggregate rankings of Economists Commences July 2004 at RePEc (Research Papers in Economics)
  16. Full list of Historical Monthly RePec Rankings (Research Papers in Economics)
  17. Federation Fellows 2007 Archived 27 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  18. The Econometric Society: Fellows of the Econometric Society Archived 10 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  19. "Awards". The Economic Society of Australia. 2011. Retrieved 2 August 2011.
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