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Within the College of Business, Law and Governance (CBLG) we teach and research to build and support strong and effective communities, industry and civil society. Everything we do is guided by three commitments:

  1. Meaning – A life-worth living – for every graduate, staff member and stakeholder
  2. Service – connecting people to communities
  3. Opportunity – meeting today’s challenges for a brighter future

College research focuses on and provides leadership in:

  • Improving the management and governance of tropical ecosystems, conservation priorities and the impacts of climate change;
  • Enhancing the viability and sustainability of industries and economies in the tropics;
  • Understanding and adding value to the wellbeing of peoples and societies in the tropics; and
  • Management and governance of tropical health, medicine and biosecurity.

Within these four areas, there are specific research strengths in four areas as shown in the diagram below.  Research in these areas is transdisciplinary in its nature.

research strength diagram

The discipline of Accounting, Auditing and Accountability focuses on management accounting issues across a range of industry sectors, for example, manufacturing and tourism. Banking, Finance and Investment as a sub discipline within CBLG examines market responses to external, uncontrollable pressures.

Within the discipline of Economics there are two main areas of research focus for staff in the CBLG. The first is a focus on the Chinese economy, the second is a focus on environmental economics.

With a particular focus on the Chinese economy the research that leverages this position contributes to the (sub) fields of financial economics, industrial economics, international trade, and foreign direct investment (FDI). This work highlights impacts on different types of firms (e.g. large/small; domestic/foreign) and industries in various regions in China and Asia. As such, it generates information of direct use to policy makers interested in considering the impact of foreign investment, financing and trade and domestic firms.

The research in environmental economics provides empirical insights relevant to environmental science and management. It employs a broad range of statistical techniques to analyse a variety of different types of data (qualitative, cross-sectional, spatial, time-series, and longitudinal) at multiple social and geographic scales (e.g. for individuals, businesses, communities, and for regions). Much of this work is collaborative, involves work that blends economic and biophysical data, and is comprised of multi-disciplinary teams of researchers.

JCU Law research encompasses three key research themes:

  • Law and legal issues affecting life in the tropics, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, in areas such as social justice, criminal law, sentencing, indigenous rights, access to justice and animal law;
  • Effective private and public governance in corporations law and regulation, tax, employment, sports law and dispute resolution to sustain economies and environments, including those in the tropics; and
  • Advancing the understanding of law and governance in areas of human services and health, tertiary education in law, legal pedagogy, and medical law, with an emphasis on the tropics.

Many outputs are interdisciplinary in nature, reflecting collaborations both within the university and with international institutions. Examples include the following areas:

  • Leadership and leadership development, including coaching;
  • Business intelligence systems;
  • Organisational culture;
  • Employment relations; and
  • Entrepreneurship.

This discipline supports the overall research agenda of the University, which is making life better in the tropics. As such, there is an applied emphasis on tropical-region issues both nationally and internationally.

Much of the research within the discipline of Marketing is centred around two main areas of focus; social marketing / behaviour change in both health and environmental sectors; and the effects and effectiveness of new digital media forms for persuasive communication.

The high levels of productivity, and the associated international influence from the Tourism study area, derive from a continuing and successful focus on the behavioural and experiential aspects of the role of the tourist in contemporary society. Members of the discipline group with backgrounds in psychology and sociology address four topics of significance:

  • Characteristics of dominant and emerging tourist markets (including Chinese and Muslim tourists);
  • On site behaviours which affect sustainability;
  • Outcomes of travel and tourism experiences, both for the individual level and for host communities; and
  • Fresh ways to conceptualise tourism research through new methods and conceptual Schemes


  • The impact of corporate governance and quality of reported earnings on market to book value ratios of Australian companies
  • Examining criminal responsibility through 'Command Responsibility', 'Superior Orders' and the 'Doctrine of Military Necessity' as applied at the Allied Military War Crimes Trials of the Pacific War 1945-1951
  • Accounting and accountability in NGOs: Exploring the stakeholder experience

Economics and Marketing

  • Testing and modelling financial asset returns and volatility spillovers - theory and applications
  • People building stronger regions: An empirical investigation into the determinants of migration - Diana Castorina
  • The impact of climate change on developing countries energy system: A model based approach
  • The impact of financial market developments on growth and the effectiveness of fiscal policy
  • Optimising environmental science communication
  • UTAUT: Exploring small business adoption of Facebook technology for consumer engagement in Townsville, North Queensland
  • Identifying the relationship between financial and non-financial information and the equity market: A study of the resources sector in North America
  • SME Stock Markets Efficiency and their dynamic impacts on macroeconomic development: Evidence from tropical economies - Trang Nguyen
  • Foreign direct investment and the labour market in Vietnam's service industries
  • Mapping the actors and factors in the private fertility decision making process in Zambia
  • Impacts of microfinance on poverty alleviation in Vietnam
  • Quantifiable evidence of the integrative model of behavioural prediction and change
  • Conquering the digital divide, with a digital native who never was
  • Model of Eco-Socially Conscious Consumer Behaviour (ESCCB) related to choice and use of personal cars - evidence from an emerging economy
  • The role of modern built heritage tourism on community wellbeing
  • Nexus of public private partnerships and institutions: Evidence from developing countries
  • Propensity score matching for enhanced valuation of flexible learning in the neoliberal Australian political economy - Joseph (Mark) Thomas
  • Indigenous economic development and sustainable livelihoods for Northern Australia
  • Opportunity cost of non-inclusive policy in Indonesia

Governance and Management

  • Strategic management in the district development authorities in Papua New Guinea; Adopting strategic management practices (systems, process and tools) in the district development authorities in Papua New Guinea
  • How are parents prepared to participate in FDR: Perspectives of parents, FDRPs and Lawyers
  • A conceptual model: Transforming internal resources and base capabilities into strategic pathways for achieving competitive advantages
  • A longitudinal study of the career paths of teaching specialists in the context of restructuring of the Australian tertiary sector
  • Western theory versus eastern practice: Chinese tourists and tourism suppliers
  • The contributions of sport and recreation infrastructure to community wellbeing
  • Compassion fatigue: Experiences of human resource professionals in the not for profit sector
  • Digital leadership: Transitioning into the digital age
  • Management consulting: Delivering competitive business value within information technology firms in India
  • Can mark-up be applied to doctrinal research to meaningfully express legal phenomena and relationships
  • Emotional intelligence, situational awareness, and safety performance: Pilots' career development
  • Investigating the gap between university and industry for information technology graduates in regional and metropolitan Australia, and evaluating what could be done by both universities and industry to bridge this gap
  • Distributed leadership applied to the design and evaluation of leadership development programs


  • Access to Justice; Racial discrimination law and Indigenous Australians
  • The role of corporate governance in Australian sporting entities
  • Teaching 'Hope': Incorporating hope theory in Australian law students' academic experience
  • A critical analysis of the needs of female survivors of sexual violence and their experiences with transitional justice - the case of Rwandan Gacaca
  • Comparative corporate governance; A case study of religious institutions and legal entrepreneurism - regulatory problems and suggested reforms


  • Repeated tourist behaviour: Role of past experience and psychological factors for different tourist segments in India
  • The safety role of air cabin crew; Personal, social and managerial challenges
  • The role of governance in building political, social and human capitals for sustainable tourism development in the Mekong River Delta
  • Technology dead zone tourism; Reaping wellbeing from disconnection in the Asian-Pacific region
  • Assessing the sustainability of development strategies in rural and remote areas
  • Re-assessing the effectiveness of community-based tourism in under developed economies: A semi-traditional perspective
  • Employee engagement: A critical assessment of the relationship with the psychological contracts
  • Paranormal tourism: Case studies in Australia, Indonesia and Thailand
  • Popular culture as a powerful destination marketing tool: An Australian study
  • Wildlife viewing preferences of visitors to protected areas in Sabah, Malaysia: Implication for the role of wildlife tourism in conservation
  • Remembering tourist destinations; The effects of order
  • Ethnic tourism in Vietnam's Central Highlands: Issues, intervention and effects

If you are a current PhD student with our College and would like your name to be included alongside your thesis title, please contact [email protected]

JCU always has on offer a diverse, interesting, and cutting-edge array of research projects available to prospective higher degree by research candidates.

To view research projects available within the College of Business, Law and Governance visit this page.

To apply to be involved in one of the these projects, visit the How to Apply page.