Griffith links with CSIRO on Super research

Head and shoulders of Professor Michael Drew
Professor Michael Drew will lead a study of investment strategies for managing retirement risk.

Griffith Business School has joined forces with CSIRO for the launch of a new $9 million research program involving CSIRO and four universities, linking science and superannuation.

Professor Michael Drew and Associate Professor Robert Bianchi from Griffith’s Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics are in Melbourne tonight (Thursday) for the official launch of the CSIRO-Monash Superannuation Research Cluster.

“Griffith University will lead two key themes in the research program around modelling retirement outcomes for all Australians and the topical area of infrastructure investing,” Professor Drew said.

“Superannuation assets in Australia now stand at record levels, in excess of $1.6 trillion. The effective and efficient transformation of retirement savings into retirement income is more important today than ever before.

“This major grant from CSIRO allows Griffith University to continue its excellence in the field of superannuation and investment management.”

The Cluster is built around a $3m Flagship Cluster Fund grant from CSIRO, and $3m in-kind research contribution from university partners led byMonash University. Another $3m will come from industry partners and government agencies.

In collaboration with CSIRO, Griffith University will join researchers from Monash and the Universities of Western Australia and Oxford to consider improvements to retirement outcomes and superannuation investing.

Research led by Professor Drew will examine investment strategies for managing retirement risk into a future where Australian retirees will experience longer life spans than previous generations.

“This issue becomes more acute given the financial aspects of later-life medical and aged care expenses. The Griffith research team will also examine the complex issues relating to the retirement and ageing outcomes,” he said.

Associate Professor Bianchi is stream leader in the research initiative on infrastructure investment and its role in superannuation.

“This research will examine Australian infrastructure assets and how they interact with other types of investments including shares, bonds, real estate and alternatives like commodities and hedge funds,” he said.

The research on infrastructure will also examine public private partnerships (PPPs) and the determinants of their success and failure.

“The purpose of this research is to provide new insights on infrastructure in the Australian economy so that superannuation funds can make better investment decisions which will assist in the long-term growth and prosperity of Australian society.”

Associate Professor Jason West will also be a key researcher as part of the grant, which will also host research fellow, Dr Adam Walk, an expert in pension finance.

Pro Vice Chancellor (Business), Professor Michael Powell, said the grant demonstrates Griffith University’s significant capacity in a rapidly growing and increasingly important field.