Dave AppelsEconomist

    David is an economist specialising in natural resource topics, particularly water — including impacts of water trading, water market design, and broader water management and policy.

    He has recently managed Frontier’s advice on the Murray-Darling Basin Plan and Frontier’s review of Schedule D of the Murray-Darling Agreement for the MDBA. Other recent projects have included reporting on current issues in Australia’s water markets, examining the economic, social and environmental impacts of water trade in the southern Murray–Darling Basin, and developing frameworks to assess the progress of water-market reform. He is also able to apply quantitative economic approaches and examples include providing expert evidence in the South Australian Federal Court challenge to Victorian Water Trading Rules, and developing a model of temporary water markets to assess the effect of changing water trading possibilities. His recent clients include the ACCC, NWC, MDBA, Victorian Department of the Environment and Primary Industries.

    David has a Bachelor of Science and an Honours degree in Economics from ANU and a Master of Environment (Economics) from the University of Melbourne.

    David is Frontier’s go-to man for any cycling know-how. He is waiting for the day to combine economics with cycling and undertake a major economic analysis of the benefits of commuting via bike.


    David is an economist specialising in resource and agricultural topics — including agricultural/NRM program evaluations and resource management and policy.

    David is skilled at applying economic principles across a range of problems in areas as diverse as R&D program evaluations, biosecurity program evaluations (locusts and equine influenza), beef industry mergers, resource rent policies, and economic consequences of water carryover decisions. A feature of these projects has been his ability to use innovative approaches, adapt available data and collaborate with industry experts to populate conventional economic assessment frameworks. His recent clients include the ACCC, MDBA, Meridian Energy, the Victorian Department of the Environment and Primary Industries, and Murray Goulburn Co-Operative Co. Limited / Devondale.

    He is Treasurer/Secretary of the Victorian Branch of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.

    Selected Work By Dave




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    Bob Bartels