We are Australia’s pre-eminent economic and social policy research centre. For more than 50 years our world-class economists have conducted rigorous, independent research and analysis, providing an evidence base for effective policy reform. We help to solve some of the most pressing and complex issues affecting ordinary Australians, striving to advance opportunity, equity and prosperity for our nation.
Discover the Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research
Our research provides a nuanced understanding of the social and economic issues affecting contemporary Australia. We focus on interconnected concerns related to equity in economic and social wellbeing.Explore our research
Data Tools and Indicators
We apply cutting-edge statistical and econometric methodology to primary and secondary data sets, producing trusted tools and insights for government, education, business and community organisations.Access our data tools
Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey
Our HILDA survey has provided crucial insights into Australian life for nearly two decades. The only nationally representative long-term study of households in this country, it has followed the same group of Australians since 2001.Discover HILDA
The latest Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey shines a light on those most vulnerable to the COVID-19 economic downturn – low-wage workers, women and young people
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting the ability of Australians to donate and extend a helping hand to others outside their household, according to the latest survey by the Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research at the University of Melbourne.
Australia's economy has prospered due to open borders and international trade. It has much more to lose from disruptions.
While almost 80 per cent of Australians are perceived as practising social distancing, younger Australians are more likely to indicate that fewer people in their neighbourhood are practising the disease-prevention measure, according to the latest survey by the Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research at the University of Melbourne.
The Melbourne Institute’s research provides a nuanced understanding of the complex social and economic issues affecting contemporary Australia. We focus on interconnected concerns related to equity in economic and social wellbeing. By evaluating and informing the design of efficient and appropriate policies, we work to reduce socio-economic disadvantage and promote economic independence for more Australians.
Data and Analytics
Our expert data analysts and scientists provide a range of data-related services equipping researchers – both within the Institute and in government, academia and industry – with the evidence required for informed decision-making.
Disadvantage and Wellbeing in the Asia-Pacific
Melbourne Institute researchers are examining the complex issues arising from disadvantage in Australia’s surrounding regions to contribute to policy development aimed at improving citizens’ wellbeing.
Education and Child Development
The Melbourne Institute provides crucial intelligence to government policymakers and the education sector, helping to improve Australians’ educational outcomes and support positive life trajectories.
Families and Households
We have investigated the issues affecting Australian families for nearly two decades. Our work helps to reduce inequality and equip families to make positive decisions for their long-term prosperity.
Health and Healthcare
Our research provides vital insights into the funding and organisation of Australia’s healthcare system, the factors influencing individuals’ health and the issues surrounding equity and quality in healthcare provision.
HILDA Survey Design
The Melbourne Institute has championed best-practice longitudinal survey methods and enabled researchers to produce powerful insights into Australian life via the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia Survey for more than two decades.
Income and Economic Wellbeing
For more than 50 years, the Melbourne Institute has played a leading role in developing an evidence base of the causes and consequences of individuals’ and families’ economic outcomes in Australia.
Labour Markets and Employment
Our researchers are advancing knowledge of workforce supply and demand by analysing the dynamics of employment over the entire lifecycle and evaluating the effectiveness of policies in improving labour market outcomes.
Macroeconomic Modelling, Forecasting and Policy Analysis
Our world-class economists at the Melbourne Institute conduct in-depth analysis of domestic and international fiscal and monetary policies, evaluating their impact on the state of the Australian economy.
The Melbourne Institute conducts independent, rigorous analysis of public policy in relation to taxation, expenditure and investment. Our aim is to understand how government decision-making affects the delivery of public services and economic development.
The Melbourne Institute’s academic staff are active researchers, publishing their findings in books and leading Australian and international journals.
The Melbourne Institute Working Papers Series presents the results of research projects undertaken by our academic staff.
The Melbourne Institute Research Insights Series provides meaningful analysis of questions related to contemporary economic and social issues in Australia, to enable evidence-based decision making for policy and practice.
Australian Economic Review
The Australian Economic Review is a peer-reviewed, applied economics journal that publishes high quality articles applying economic analysis to a wide range of macro and microeconomic topics relevant to issues in economics and social policy.
The Melbourne Institute measures a variety of macroeconomic indicators, from the drivers of economic growth to the sentiments underpinning the nation’s economic outlook.
Social Indicator Reports
The Melbourne Institute measures a range of social indicators, from household expenditure to individual and social well-being.
The Melbourne Institute’s academic staff write and contribute to high-quality research texts that explore a variety of issues in economic and social policy.
HILDA Statistical Reports
Key research findings from current and past releases of the HILDA Survey.
HILDA Survey Publications
An extensive bibliography of all Australian and international research publications known to use or reference data from the HILDA Survey.
Publications and results from MABEL, Australia's national longitudinal survey of doctors.
Universitas 21 Rankings
Assessment and ranking of 50 of the world's higher education systems.
Poverty Lines: Australia is a quarterly newsletter that updates the Henderson Poverty Line as defined in the 1973 Commonwealth Commission of Inquiry into Poverty.
To receive news and information via email about any of the Melbourne Institute’s free publications, please join our mailing list.
The Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) Survey is a household-based panel study that collects valuable information about economic and personal well-being, labour market dynamics and family life.
The Consumer Attitudes, Sentiments and Expectations in Australia Survey, known as CASiE, is a monthly survey of Australian households across the nation. CASiE provides valuable and timely signals about consumer perceptions of the state of the economy.
Journeys Home: A Longitudinal Study of Factors Affecting Housing Stability was a national survey of Australians who were either homeless or at high risk of becoming homeless.
The Melbourne Institute is Australia’s pre-eminent economic and social policy research institution. It undertakes high quality, independent and impartial applied research, and contributes to the development of public policy in Australia.
Established in 1962, the Institute provides high calibre, peer-reviewed levels of research to government, business and community groups. It is internationally renowned for its HILDA and MABEL Surveys, as well as its measurement of economic and social indicators.
As Australia’s leading applied economics and social policy research centre, the Melbourne Institute’s mission is to:
- Undertake and publish high-quality academic research on major economic and social policy issues affecting contemporary Australia
- Foster informed discussion and debate on domestic public policy
- Provide highly valued research services, publications and datasets to government, business and community groups
- Become internationally renowned for its expertise and contributions to international research, and
- Provide quality research training through an internationally recognised PhD program.
To find out more about the Melbourne Institute and its contributions to economic and social policy in Australia, visit our history page.
The Melbourne Institute Advisory Board provides strategic advice on the successful operation of the Institute, with particular focus on research and engagement.
Meeting at regular intervals, board members use their in-depth knowledge of industry and policy to ensure that the Melbourne Institute remains the world’s leading research centre on economic and social policy in Australia.
Doctoral Program in Economics
The Melbourne Institute offers an internationally recognised, five-year doctoral program jointly with the Department of Economics at the University of Melbourne.
The program is designed for students with prior training in economics who wish to acquire the advanced skills needed to practise as a professional economist in the public or private sectors or as an academic.
Students undertake two years of coursework and three years of research throughout the program, and have the opportunity to complete a Doctor of Philosophy in a wide range of specialisations. Students can be jointly supervised by members of the Melbourne Institute and the Department of Economics.
Further information about the Economics Doctoral Program is available from the Faculty of Business and Economics.
The Melbourne Institute has significant experience providing a broad range of applied research services, from statistical and quantitative analyses to the evaluation of existing research.
Working closely with partners in government, industry and community organisations, the Institute explores a variety of issues in economic and social policy, in order to inform policy development and provide insights that improve programs, practice and service delivery.
The Melbourne Institute’s research partners include:
- Department of Social Services, Australian Government (HILDA Survey and Journeys Home Survey)
- Brotherhood of St Laurence
- Sacred Heart Mission
- ARC Centre of Excellence for Children and Families over the Life Course
- Department of Employment, Australian Government (Social Policy Research Services)
- National Centre for Vocational Education Research (National VET Research and Evaluation Program), and
- Department of Education and Training, Victoria (Research and Evaluation projects).
The Melbourne Institute is delighted to host leading Australian and international researchers throughout the year, as part of our extensive visitor program.
Visiting academics collaborate with Melbourne Institute staff on specific topics of investigation and present their research at seminars, workshops and conferences.
The Melbourne Institute is a member of the worldwide National Economic Research Organisations network, known as NERO.
Facilitated by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, NERO members exchange research findings, identify new areas of study and attend an annual conference.