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CEPAR researchers among Group of Eight universities expert taskforce on COVID-19 Roadmap to Recovery


Latest update on 29 April 2020

CEPAR Chief Investigators Warwick McKibbin and John Piggott, PhD student Nicole Ee, and Associate Investigators Collin Payne and Peter Whiteford are among a group of experts convened by the Group of Eight (Go8) universities taskforce ‘Roadmap to Recovery’.

The Go8 is convening the expert taskforce to develop an independent, evidence-based report with a set of recommendations to offer advice to the Australian Government on responding to the challenge of recovering from the current state of pandemic shut-down.

The taskforce is drawn from the academic membership of the Go8 universities. Membership ranges from PhD students to senior professors. They include experts in epidemiology, modelling, infectious diseases, public health and mental health, psychology, economy and political science, as well as other social sciences and experts with special knowledge of vulnerable groups, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.

The group is tasked with generating a series of evidence-based, actionable, recommendations, addressing both Commonwealth and State and Territory governments, finding a reasonable balance between maximising the safety of populations, the protection of the economy, and the wellbeing of society.

The Report has been presented to the Government and other decision-makers and is available online.


Nicole Ee is a CEPAR PhD candidate at the University of New South Wales and Neuroscience Research Australia. She graduated from the Australian National University with a Bachelor in Laws and Bachelor of Psychology (Hons 1). In 2019 she was awarded a Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship to undertake interdisciplinary research investigating the relationships between social engagement, wellbeing and cognitive health older adulthood. More broadly, her research seeks to understand to the barriers and enablers to healthy ageing and social participation in the context of life course factors, societal expectations, infrastructure and public policy. She draws upon her experience in high-level evidence synthesis for global health policy development and is involved in community-based and national research projects focussed on understanding, and optimising the experience of older adults in society.

Professor Warwick J. McKibbin, AO, FASSA is the Vice Chancellor’s Chair in Public Policy and is Director of the Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis (CAMA) in the Crawford School of Public Policy at the Australian National University (ANU). He is Director of Policy Engagement and a Chief Investigator in CEPAR. He is also a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C. He was awarded the Order of Australia in 2016. Professor McKibbin is internationally renowned for his contributions to global economic modeling, the theory of monetary policy, and the economics of pandemics. He has published more than 240 peer reviewed academic papers and 5 books as well as being a regular commentator in the popular press.


Dr Collin Payne is a Lecturer in the School of Demography at the Australian National University, and an Associate Investigator at CEPAR. His substantive research centres on the intersections between population ageing and population health, with a focus on understanding the dynamics of chronic health conditions, frailty, and multimorbidity over time and across generations. He also conducts methodological research on multistate models and demographic microsimulation. Payne received his PhD in Demography from the University of Pennsylvania, and previously held a postdoctoral fellowship at the Harvard University School of Public Health.



Professor John Piggott AO is Director of CEPAR at UNSW, where he is Scientia Professor of Economics. He has published widely in retirement and pension economics and finance, and in public economics more generally. His Australian policy experience includes membership of both the Henry Tax Review Panel and the Ministerial Superannuation Advisory Committee, as well as many interactions with a range of Government Departments. He also has extensive experience in interacting with international governments and organisations. In 2018, he won a Rockefeller Residency to undertake research into ageing and inequality in Asia, and was appointed co-chair of the G20 Population Ageing Taskforce. He recently joined the US National Academy of Medicine’s Project, “A Roadmap to Healthy Longevity” as a Commissioner.


Professor Peter Whiteford works in the Crawford School of Public Policy at The Australian National University. He is a Fellow of the Tax and Transfer Policy Institute in the School. He has previously worked at the UNSW, the University of York, and the OECD, as well as for the Australian Government. He is an Associate Investigator at CEPAR. In 2008, he was appointed to the Reference Group for the Harmer Review of the Australian pension system. He has published extensively on international comparisons of social security policies, inequality and redistribution. In 2018 he was elected as a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia.