Field of crop seedlings

The vision of the Regional and Rural Economies research theme is to improve analysis and decisions around resource and sustainability issues in regional and rural areas using economic frameworks. A key focus is to apply economic analysis to primary and resource sectors in northern Australia, including the Great Barrier Reef region, to improve decision-making about development and sustainability. This research theme focuses on the intersection between resource activity and regional development, and works to generate new information and understanding about developing and managing resources for best regional outcomes, the need to protect natural resources from development pressures, and the importance of human capital and entrepreneurial thinking in regional communities, business and industries. CRESC seeks to engage closely with major stakeholders relating to resource and sustainability issues across northern Australia.

Key areas of research and activities include:

  • Valuing environmental assets and improvements
  • Economics of water quality improvements
  • Agricultural economics
  • Valuing recreation
  • Benefit transfer
  • Regional development
  • Economic and social impact assessment
  • Environmental monitoring and report cards
  • Great Barrier Reef
John Rolfe


Professor John Rolfe is a resource economist who is Professor of Regional Economic Development in the School of Business and Law at CQUniversity at Rockhampton, and a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia. Professor Rolfe has a number of research interests, but specialises in non-market valuation, regional development, environmental, resource and agricultural economic issues, agricultural adoption, and economic impact assessment in regional areas. He co-edited two important reference books on the topic of non-market valuation and benefit transfer in 2006 and 2015 and has published in a number of discipline areas outside his core skills in Applied Economics, including agricultural management, environmental reporting, impact assessment, and regional development.

Professor Rolfe has extensive practical and policy experience on the intersection of agricultural and environmental issues in northern Australia, with a focus on economic analysis. At an academic level his key impacts are largely in the development and application of non-market valuation techniques, particularly choice modelling, and the transfer of those values to different case study settings. At a policy level, he has had a major role in applying economic analysis to key issues in regional development, agricultural development and resource protection, with a particular emphasis on dealing with agricultural water quality issues into the Great Barrier Reef.

See Prof Rolfe's Google Scholar listing


Under Development

Under Development


Under Development

Under Development


Professor John Rolfe

Rockhampton North
Tel:  (07) 4923 2132
Mob:  0427 130 811