How do we enhance Queensland's agricultural value chains?

Developing rural tourism: is it truly a regional diversification pathway to prosperity?

What do low carbon futures in regional rural economies look like?

How do we acculturate more entrepreneurship, innovation and business culture in regional economies?

Register here for our next event:

Webinar# 3

The future of regional work force

We will focus on trends and disruptions to workforce and the impacts this has on rural industries. We will explore challenges and new workforce narratives and models for transitioning economies, policy and program coordination. 

Small group discussion, panel questions and shared recording will be part of this 90-minute format.

Guest Speakers for this session are:

Prof Hurriyet Babacan - Rural Economies Centre of Excellence/JCU 

Hurriyet is a Professional Research Fellow with James Cook University and brings an extensive track record of leading multidisciplinary research in Australia and the Asia Pacific. She has published widely on social and community development and wellbeing, regional economic development, cultural and diversity and governance.

  • Mega global trends impacting on the future of work
  • Trends in employment, workforce and education/training
  • Disruptions to the economy, labour markets and the economy
  • Platform economy - online perils and possibilities
  • Implications for rural and regional workforce

Nathan Baronio - East Colour (Applethorpe Strawberry and apple producer)

Nathan works with Easter Colour Pty Ltd bringing his experience with Applethorpe strawberry and apple production. They have used Pacific workers and experimented with other practices to secure fruit harvest. He is a member of the Executive Committee of the Granite Belt Growers Association.

  • Experience of current workforce issues/challenges faced at enterprise lelvel
  • Implications of skills and labour shortages and gaps at the business level
  • Factors that influence workforce attraction and retention
  • Innovative ways of meeting workforce needs in rural enterprise level
  • What needs to be done to address workforce planning at the local level


Tamlyn Brennan - Consultant and Jobs Queensland Board member

Tamily has extensive expdrience developing service delivery models and workforce growth frameworks. As a Jobs Queensland board member, she provides strategic advice to the Minister on furture skilling directions and implications. She applies her broad experience in regional labour market environments and policy development to a range of operational, structural and research projects; and is proficient in facilitating relationsips and skilled at negotation with government, academia, not-for-profit and commercial organisations to effect positive regional impact.

  • Regional/rural Queensland regional workforce, employments and education/training patterns
  • Vacancies and skills shortages
  • Rural economies and workforce planning
  • Innovations for a rural workforce for the future

Date: December 9th, 2021

Time: 10:30AM-  12pm QLD time. 

Register Now!



Webinar #1

Making Sense of Markets for Ecosystem Services

Date: Thursday October 14th, 2021. An online event.

Listen to the audio from this event here. (Note: unfortunately the video recording failed to download)

In this session we will focus on what will help with identification and management of opportunities and trends in emergent environmental markets.

Associate Professor Ian Mackenzie, The University of Queensland  - The Drivers of Emerging Environmental Markets

Amelia Selles, Department of Environment and Science QLD (DES) - Environmental Impact & The role of Environmental Markets

Carole Sweatman, GreenCollar Group - Scale and Opportunity in the Real World

Nigel Onley, Taroom-based Landholder & Producer - Decision making factors and influences

Facilitators: Ben Lyons & Saleena Ham (RECoE/USQ)


Webinar #2: Changing Rural Economies

In this session we will explore new thinking achieving vibrance and viability post COVID, Qld recovery and adaptation with future economic models, structural adjustments that are needed for sustainable and inclusive rural economic development.

Date: 10:30AM -12pm (Queensland time)

Thursday November 18th, 2021. An online event. 

Cassian Drew, Inclusive Growth

Professor Allan Dale, James Cook University

John Carey, Red Earth Community Foundation (South Burnett)

Facilitator: Professor Hurriyet Babacan, Research Director -RECoE

Our core research question: 

“How best can innovation, integration, collaboration and a strategic multidisciplinary approach to industry, community and regional development deliver a thriving and internationally competitive rural economy?”

RECoE is a first-of-its-kind rural economic research collaboration comprised of four Queensland Universities: The University of Queensland, James Cook University, Central Queensland University & the University of Southern Queensland.

Established with the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries in 2018 for an initial 3 year period with combined funding of $3.6m, the centre divides its research portfolio into five themes: economic tools and analysis, regional innovation, value chain analysis, policy development; and translation & engagement.

Each of these themes have research projects based on topics and locations relevant to regional Queensland and have been designed to have impact beyond their case studies and regional locations.  

Our latest research papers:

Amber Marshall, Hurriyet Babacan & Allan Dale, June 2021. "Leveraging digital development in regional and rural Queensland:Policy Discussion Paper" The Cairns Institute, James Cook University, Cairns Australian (pp. 44). 

Akbar, D., Rolfe, J., Rahman, A., and Rajapaksa, D., 2020. Can cooperative business models coordinate horizontal and vertical supply chains? A case study in the Australian pineapple industry. School of Business and Law, CQUniversity Australia, Rockhampton (pp. 38).

Peggy Schrobback*, Steven Rust^, Sarah Ugalde^, and John Rolfe*, 2020.  Describing and analysing the
Pacific oyster supply chain in Australia. *School of Business and Law, CQUniversity Australia, Rockhampton & University of Tasmania, Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (pp.22).

Star, M., Rolfe, J., De Valck, J. and Rajapaksa, D., 2020. Consumer demands – seizing the opportunities in the beef industry. Report provided to the Rural Economies Centre of Excellence, School of Business and Law, CQUniversity Australia, Rockhampton (pp. 37).


Click on the map icons below to see our research publications and projects: