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Personal profile


Professor Robert Tanton has a PhD in Economics from the University of Canberra, and has been at NATSEM since June 2005.

Robert’s main interest is spatial disadvantage, and he is a recognised Australian and international expert on spatial disadvantage. The research conducted by him covers areas such as spatial housing disadvantage, economic disadvantage (poverty), income inequality and wellbeing. His principal areas of research are spatial disadvantage and wellbeing; spatial statistics and small area estimation; and community wellbeing.

Robert also leads work using a spatial microsimulation technique to derive small area estimates of many indicators of disadvantage and wellbeing. So far, this technique has been used to derive small area estimates of poverty and housing stress; and small area estimates of subjective wellbeing and indigenous disadvantage.

Robert has published extensively in the academic literature on spatial disadvantage and social exclusion, and has presented results of his work to a number of national and international conferences. He has also presented results from his research on spatial housing stress to the Senate Select Committee on Housing Affordability. He has been a Chief Investigator on a number of Australian Research Council grants, and has conducted commissioned work for a number of agencies including the Tasmanian Social Inclusion Unit; the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations; the AMP; Commonwealth Bank; and Veda.

Robert is involved in the Australian Urban Research Infrastructure Network (AURIN), and is on the academic sub-committee of this group.


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Education/Academic qualification


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Research Output

How does the Budget affect us 2020

Li, J., La, H. A., Miranti, R., Tanton, R., Vidyattama, Y., Nguyen, N. & Prosser, B., 2020, Canberra: NATSEM, University of Canberra. 11 p.

Research output: Book/ReportReports

Open Access
  • IDMOD: An Australian microsimulation model of lifetime economic and social factors in familial intellectual disability

    Schofield, D., Tan, O., Shrestha, R., Rajkumar, R., West, S., Rice, M., Kasparian, N., Boyle, J., Christie, L., Leffler, M., Murray, L., Tanton, R., Li, J., Roscioli, T. & Field, M., 2020, In : International Journal of Microsimulation. 13, 1, p. 52-66 15 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 10 Downloads (Pure)

    Using a Spatial Farm Microsimulation Model for Australia to Estimate the Impact of an External Shock on Farmer Incomes

    Vidyattama, Y. & Tanton, R., 1 Apr 2020, Statistics for Data Science and Policy Analysis. Rahman, A. (ed.). Singapore: Springer, p. 283-304 23 p.

    Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookChapter

  • Using Spatial Microsimulation to Derive a Base File for a Spatial Decision Support System

    Tanton, R. & Vidyattama, Y., Apr 2020, Population Change and Impacts in Asia and the Pacific. Poot, J. & Roskruge, M. (eds.). Singapore: Springer, p. 107-120 14 p. (New Frontiers in Regional Science: Asian Perspectives).

    Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookChapter

  • Creating community indicators for early childhood development: Challenges and innovations from the kids in communities study

    Goldfeld, S., Villanueva, K., TANTON, R., Katz, I., Brinkman, S., Giles-Corti, B. & Woolcock, G., 29 Apr 2019, In : Cities & Health. p. 1-10 10 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

  • Activities

    • 1 Editorial work

    Computers, Environment and Urban Systems (Journal)

    Robert TANTON (Reviewer)

    1 May 2017

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial workEditorial work