Prof Quentin Grafton

  • Professor, Australian Laureate Fellow, Chairholder, UNESCO Chair in water Economics & Transboundary Water Governance, Director, Centre for Water Economics, Environment & Policy, Convener Geneva Actions on Human Water Security, Convener Water Justice Hub, Crawford School of Public Policy

Research activity per year

Personal profile


R. Quentin Grafton is an Australian Laureate Fellow, Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia (FASSA) and a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD). He is Professor of Economics, Convenor of the Water Justice Hub and Director of the Centre for Water Economics, Environment and Policy (CWEEP) at the Crawford School of Economics and Government at the Australian National University (ANU). He is also the Chairholder, the Australian National University-UNESCO Chair in Water Economics and Transboundary Water Governance. 

He previously served as the inaugural Chief Economist and Executive Director of the Australian Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (2011-2013) and as the President of the Australasian Agricultural and Resources Economics Society (AARES) in 2017-18. He is currently the Editor-in-Chief of Policy, the Director of the Food, Energy, Environment and Water (FE2W) Network, which he helped establish, and the Convener of the Geneva Actions on Human Water Security. He also convenes the Water Justice Hub.

He has published over 160 scholarly peer-reviewed articles, including in some of the world's leading journals in economics and the life sciences (such as Science three times), 40 + chapters in books, 10 edited books and seven authored books including: Risks, Rewards and Regulation of Unconventional Gas (2017, Cambridge University Press), Water Resources Planning and Management (2011, Cambridge University Press), Handbook of Marine Fisheries Conservation and Management (2010, Oxford University Press).

He has served in numerous advisory roles and expert panels in Australia and overseas. He served as Chair of the Marine Estate Expert Knowledge Panel for New South Wales (2014-18), Chair of the International Expert Group on Geothermal Energy (2013-14) and Chair of the Social and Economics Reference Panel of the Murray-Darling Basin Commission (2008-2009).




Research interests

  • Water justice
  • Food, Energy, Water nexus
  • Resilience and risk
  • Urban water pricing
  • Energy security
  • Gas markets and regulation
  • Water markets and water economics
  • Social capital and network theory
  • Fisheries management (especially marine reserves)
  • Property rights (especially quantitative instruments in resource and environmental management)

Current student projects

Current PhD students

  • Albert Lamberte
  • Khanh Hoang
  • Chloe Burns

Researcher's projects

  • Responding to risks and managing for resilience
  • Food and water gaps
  • Economics costs at water restrictions
  • Human-induced impact on water scarcity
  • Optimal investment in water supply
  • Marine reserve and ecological uncertainty
  • Social networks and productivity
  • Social capital and environmental performance
  • Efficiency measures in fisheries


B.Ag. Econ (Massey), MS (Iowa State University), PhD (University of British Columbia)

Expertise Areas

  • Environmental Management
  • Natural Resource Management
  • Fisheries Management
  • Simulation and Modelling
  • Agricultural Economics
  • Environment and Resource Economics


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