David Adamson

Dr David Adamson

Senior Lecturer

School of Economics and Public Policy

Faculty of Arts, Business, Law and Economics

Eligible to supervise Masters and PhD - email supervisor to discuss availability.

From Apples to Zoonosis

David is an agricultural economist who specialises in decision-making under risk and uncertainty. David has extensive experience in modelling economic production systems (irrigation, livestock, cropping, etc) to explore policy and strategic research issues.

He has applied these skills to protect capital (economic, social, cultural, and environmental) from issues including, but not limited to, biosecurity, water resources and climate change.

David works with multidisciplinary teams in Australia and around the world. He holds an honorary position at the University of Liverpool, UK dealing with one-health economics.

He has been published in leading journals, including Nature Sustainability, Global Environmental Change, Water Resource Research and Land Economics. His extensive consulting experience includes working for the World Organisation of Animal Health (OIE), USDA, The Uruguayan Government, and The Murray-Darling Basin Authority.

Key Research Areas: Biosecurity, Water, Climate Change, Agriculture

Key Skills: Risk & Uncertainty, Optimisation, CBA, Whole Farm Analysis


Biosecurity Economic Experience:

  • the economist at the CRC for Tropical Pest Management (1994-99)
  • a member of the Independent Review into Red Imported Fire Ants (2015-16),
  • explored the biosecurity implications of harmonising regulations via Free Trade Agreements,
  • worked on agroterrorism for the OIE (2019-20)
  • Foot & Mouth Disease management options in Uruguay, and
  • exploring the value of rapid disease detection kits in the USA.

Water Resource Experience:

  • held an ARC DECRA Fellowship dealing with maximising the benefits of restoring environmental flows (2016-2020)
  • advised Europe's largest Dam managers in Portugal on water allocation under a changing climate Climate Change (2018)
  • a member of the Murray-Darling Basin Authority’s Economic Modelling and Costs Analysis Technical Group (2011)

Climate Change Experience:

  • The Garnaut Climate Change Review
  • Impacts on water resources
  • Impacts on distribution and density of species
  • Agricultural adaptation
  • Appointments

    Date Position Institution name
    2020 - ongoing Senior Lecturer University of Adelaide
    2017 - 2020 ARC DECRA Senior Research Fellow (C) The University of Adelaide
    2016 - 2017 ARC DECRA Fellow The University of Queensland
    2011 - 2016 Senior Academic Research Officer The University of Queensland
    2005 - 2011 Research Manager The University of Queensland
    2004 - 2005 Research Officer The University of Queensland
    2000 - 2004 Director Self-employed
    1999 - 2000 Research Officer The University of Queensalnd
    1994 - 1999 Economist CRC for Tropical Pest Management
  • Awards and Achievements

    Date Type Title Institution Name Country Amount
    2017 Award Executive Dean’s Commendation for Excellence in Research, University of Adelaide Award The University of Adelaide Australia -
    2016 Fellowship Discovery Early Career Researcher Researcher Award - Australia -
    2015 Fellowship Endeavour Research Fellow - Australia $24,500
    2015 Fellowship The University Of QueenslandAustralian Institute for Business and Economics (AIBE) Fellowship The University of Queensland Australia $39,336
  • Education

    Date Institution name Country Title
    2008 - 2015 The University of Queensland Australia PhD
    1994 - 1997 The University of Queensland Australia M.Natural Resource Economics
    1990 - 1994 University of New England Australia B.Ag Econ
  • Research Interests

David Adamson has won/participated in over $1.7 million worth of research/consultancy/fellowships since 2008. 

Year   Project Name TOTAL
2021 ACIAR ACIAR: Seeds of Life $119,743
2020 Faculty of Pofessions, UoA Faculty of Professions, Animate your Science $5,000
2020 FFCRC FFCRC: Social Licence Project $40,000
2019 Urugyian Government Evaluation of FMD in Uruguay $14,308
2019 OIE OIE Agroterrorism $112,969
2019 SARDI/PIRSA Sterile Insect Technology $33,000
2019 University of Alcala Giner de los Rios Fellowship $8,617
2018 University of Liverpool UoL 20% of salary 2018+ 2019 $77,119
2018 UoA UoA interdisciplinary Research Funding $65,000
2017 UoA, EU Centre for Global Affairs Annual Grant Program $15,000
2016 ARC ARC DECRA $335,000
2016 ACIAR ACIAR: Horticultural Markets in Pakistan $302,104
2015 DNRM, QLD DNRM Pricing New Water Rights $34,856
2015 AIBE, UQ AIBE Fellowship $39,336
2015 Australian Governmen Endeavour Research Fellow $24,500
2014 COST-ACTION, EU Network for Evaluation of One Health, TD Cost-Action TD1401*  
2013 UWA/UQ collaboration fund Coal Seam Gas & the Precautionary Principal $6,799
2011 ABARE/MDBA MDBA: Water Supply Variability & Sustainable Diversion Limits  $41,155
2011 Inovac/NWC Analysis of the Impact of the National Water Initiative $99,000
2010 MDBA Economic Analysis of Diversion Operations for the Murray-Darling Basin Plan $57,000
2009 CRC  One-Health Evaluation $17,000
2009 SA Government SA Government High Court Challenge on Water Trade  $230,000
2008 The Garnaut Climate Change Review Garnaut Climate Change Review: The Implications for Irrigation in the MDB $38,455
2008 ABARE/Dept Ag Vic ABARES/Dept of Ag Victoria: Reduced Water Availability in the MDB $18,182


Teaching/Course Co-ordination:

  • From  2020 Agribus 7057 "Trends in the World Food System"
  • From 2021 Agribus "Agricultural Decision Making"

Guest Lectures:

  • Adamson, D. 2016, ‘Economic impacts of One Health events’,  Guest Lecture for VETS1030 One Health, 7 October 2016.
  • Adamson, D. 2016, Economics and Biosecurity, Guest lecture for AGRC3042 Animal & Plant Biosecurity, 23 March 2016.
  • Adamson, D. 2013: ‘The Murray-Darling Basin Plan & the Buy-Back’, Guest Lecture for ECON3710, 5 August 2013.
  • Adamson, D. 2012, ‘Water Issues in the Murray Darling Basin’, Guest Lectures for ENVM7100 & ENVM2100, 24 & 26 April 2012.

Training Courses:

  • Adamson, D 2016, Bio-Security & Market Access: The Role of Public Institutions DFAT’s Australia Awards Africa Agribusiness, Training Course, 30 August.
  • Adamson, D. 2014, ‘The Murray-Darling Basin Plan; Policy Analysis’, BAPPENAS: Institutional Strengthening in the Indonesian Water Resources, Brisbane 12 Aug 2014.
  • Adamson, D. 1996, ‘Biological control of tropical weeds: the economics of bio-control: a practical handout’, Tropical Weeds Course.
  • Adamson, D. 1996, ‘How to make a resource economist squirm’, IPM Tools for Implementation, unpublished handout, CTPM, Brisbane.
  • Adamson, D. 1996, ‘The economics of bio-control: A practical handout, IPM Tools for Implementation, unpublished handout, CTPM, Brisbane.
  • Committee Memberships

    Date Role Committee Institution Country
    2015 - 2016 Member Independent Review Panel of the National Red Imported Fire Ant Eradication Program - Australia
    2013 - 2015 President Australian Agricultural & Resource Economics Society (Queensland Branch) - Australia
    2011 - 2011 Member Economic Modelling and Costs Analysis Technical Group Murray-Darling Basin Authority Australia
  • Position: Senior Lecturer
  • Phone: 83130197
  • Email: david.adamson@adelaide.edu.au
  • Campus: North Terrace
  • Building: Nexus 10, floor 6
  • Org Unit: Centre for Global Food and Resources

Connect With Me
External Profiles