Dr Phillip Toner
Phillip gained his PhD in Political Economy at the University of Sydney in 1997. The thesis was awarded the 1999 History of Economic Thought Society of Australia Prize for the best Australian PhD on a history of economic thought subject and was published in 1999 as Main Currents in Cumulative Causation: The Dynamics of Growth and Development, Macmillan Press Ltd, U.K. and St Martin’s Press New York. After working for four years in economic consulting he was appointed in 2002 as a Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Industry and Innovation Studies, University of Western Sydney. His primary function was research and he was responsible for winning and completing $1.75m in competitive research grants. In 2012 he moved to the Department of Political Economy, University of Sydney as an Honorary Senior Research Fellow. His research interests include industrial structure analysis and industry policy; the economics of technical change; national vocational skills formation systems and labour market analysis.
His research has been undertaken for organisations including the OECD; World Bank; Industry Canada; South African Human Sciences Research Council; Australian Research Council; National Centre for Vocational Education Research; NSW Board of Vocational Education and Training; NSW TAFE Commission; Department of Innovation, Science and Research; Department of Employment, Education and Workplace Relations; Australian Industry Group; Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Master Builders Association; BIS-Shrapnel; Dusseldorp Skills Forum; Construction Training Australia; Group Training Australia and the ACTU, RTBU, AMWU and CFMEU. He has also prepared submissions to, and appeared before, several state and Commonwealth government inquiries on industry policy and vocational training. In 2011 he completed a paper for the OECD on workforce skills and innovation and presented the results to the Organisation in Paris. In 2013 he was Gastwissenschaftliche (Visiting Researcher) Institut Technik & Bildung, Universität Bremen.
He has published extensively in Australian and overseas journals including the Cambridge Journal of Economics; British Journal of Industrial Relations; Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation; Journal of Contemporary Asia; Issues & Studies: A Quarterly Journal on China, Taiwan and East Asia; Journal of Industrial Relations; The Economic and Labour Relations Review; Economic Analysis and Policy; Australian Bulletin of Labour and Labour & Industry.
He is an Academic Reviewer for the British Journal of Industrial Relations; Cambridge Journal of Economics; Review of Political Economy; International Journal of Operations and Production Management; Education + Training; Education Economics; The Journal of Industrial Relations; The Economic and Labour Relations Review; The Journal of Australian Political Economy; Labour & Industry and Transactions of Multi-Disciplinary Engineering (Institution of Engineers, Australia).
Toner P. (1999) Main Currents in Cumulative Causation: The Dynamics of Growth and Development, Macmillan Press Ltd, U.K. and St Martin’s Press New York.
Chapters in Books
Toner P., Dalitz R. and Turpin T. (2011) VET and the Diffusion and Implementation of Innovation in the Mining, Solar Energy and Computer Games Sectors, in Penelope Curtin, John Stanwick and Francesca Beddie (eds), Fostering enterprise: the innovation and skills nexus – research readings, National Centre for Vocational Education Research, Adelaide, ISBN 978 1 921809 84 2, pp.144-157
Toner P. (2011) Tradespeople and technicians in innovation, in Penelope Curtin, John Stanwick and Francesca Beddie (eds), National Centre for Vocational Education Research, Adelaide, ISBN 978 1 921809 84 2, pp.127-143
Toner P. and Butler G. (2009) Cumulative Causation and Northeast Asian Post-War Industry Policy, in Sebastian Berger (ed.) The Foundations of Non-Equilibrium Economics: The Principle of Circular and Cumulative Causation, Routledge, UK, pp.43-64
Toner P. (2004) Innovation Agents: Vocational education and training in the present and future Australian innovation system, in Susan Dawe (ed.) Vocational education and training and innovation, National Centre for Vocational Education Research, Adelaide, ISBN 1 92089572 8, pp.84-105
Toner P. (2013) Expert Witness Submission on Behalf of the ACTU to Fair Work Commission 2013 Apprenticeship Wage Review
Green R., Toner P., Agarwal R (2013) Understanding Productivity Australia’s Choice, McKell Institute,
Eddington N., Toner P. (2012) “Skills Formation Strategies in Queensland: A Skills Shortage?” OECD Local Economic and Employment Development (LEED) Working Papers, 2012/07, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Paris www.Available here
Toner P., Lloyd C. (2012) A Study Into Pre-Apprenticeship Delivery Models and Their Labour Market Outcomes, Group Training Australia, Sydney, ISBN: 978–0–9873789–0–3
Toner P. (2011) Workforce Skills and Innovation: An Overview of Major Themes in the Literature, Directorate for Science, Technology and Industry Working Paper, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Paris
Dalitz R., Toner P., Turpin T. (2011) VET and the diffusion and implementation of innovation in the mining, solar energy and computer games sectors, National Centre for Vocational Education Research, Adelaide, ISBN: 978 1 921955 14 3
Toner P., Turpin T., Woolley R., Lloyd C. (2011) The Role and Contribution of Tradespeople and Technicians in Australian Research & Development: An Exploratory Study, Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
Toner P. (2007) Skills and Innovation – Putting Ideas to Work. Background Paper on VET and Innovation, Prepared for the Conference Skills and Innovation: Putting Ideas to Work, 27-28 June, 2006, Australian Technology Park, Sydney, NSW Board of Vocational Education and Training, ISBN 0 7310 7961 2
Toner P., Cully, M., Ong, K. (2007) Review of Australian apprenticeships incentives and assistance: Analysis of incentive payments, report to the Department of Education, Science and Training, NCVER, Adelaide
Toner P. (2005) Keeping up with technology: A pilot study of TAFE and the manufacturing sector, National Centre for Vocational Education Research, Adelaide, ISBN 1 920896 252
Toner P. (2005) Getting it Right. What Employers and Apprentices Have To Say About Apprenticeships, Australian Industry Group, Group Training Australia and Dusseldorp Skills Forum, ISBN 0 9750250 31
Toner P., Macdonald D., Croce N. (2004) Group Training in Australia: A study of group training organisations and host employers, National Centre for Vocational Education Research, 2004, ISBN 1920895523
Toner P. (2004) The Role of vocational education and training in attracting foreign investment from multinational companies, National Centre for Vocational Education Research, Adelaide, pp.48 ISBN 1 920895 83 3
Toner P., Marceau J., Hall R., Considine G. (2004) Innovation Agents: Vocational education and training skills and innovation in Australian industries and firms, National Centre for Vocational Education Research, Adelaide, 110 pages ISBN 1920895434
Toner P. (2003) Declining Apprentice Training Rates: Causes, Consequences and Solutions, Dusseldorp Skills Forum, pp. 40
Toner P. (2001) Current Trends In Apprenticeship and Traineeship Training In New South Wales, NSW Board of Vocational Education and Training, pp.90 ISBN 0 7310 7952 3
Toner P. (2001) The Impact of Skilled Migration on Skill Formation and the Labour Market, NSW Board of Vocational Education and Training, 2001, pp.85, ISBN 073107789X
Refereed Journal Articles
1. Contracting out publicly funded vocational education: A transaction
cost critique, The Economic and Labour Relations Review 2014, Vol. 25(2)222–239 Available here
2. Vocational Education and Training: the ‘terra incognita’ of Innovation Policy, Prometheus.
Critical Studies in Innovation, Volume 30, Issue 4, 2012: 411-426 (with Robert Dalitz)
3. Digital based media design: the innovative contribution of design graduates from vocational and higher education sectors International Journal of Technology and Design Education, International Journal of Technology and Design Education (14 December 2011), pp. 1-15. (with Kalika Navin Doloswala and Darrall Thompson)
4. Innovation and Vocational Education, The Economic and Labour Relations Review, 2010, Vol. 21 No.2, 75-98
5. Temporary migration and skills formation in the trades: a provisional assessment, People and Place, 2008, Vol. 16, No. 3, 47-57 (with Richard Woolley)
6. Survival and Decline of the Apprenticeship System in the Australian and UK Construction Industries, British Journal of Industrial Relations, 2008, Vol. 46 No. 3 September, 413–438
7. Competition and the Growth of Non-Standard Employment: The Case of the Australian Construction Industry, Labour and Industry, Vol. 17, No. 2, December, 2006, 99-118 (Co-authored with Nick Coates)
8. Restructuring the Australian Construction Industry and Workforce: Implications for a Sustainable Labour Supply, The Economic and Labour Relations Review, Vol. 17, No. 1, September, 2006, 171-202
9. Some Reflections on ‘Governing the Market’, Issues & Studies: A Quarterly Journal on China, Taiwan and East Asia, Vol. 40, No. 1, March, 2004, 81-102 (Co-authored with Gavan Butler)
10. Supply-Side and Demand-Side Explanations of Declining Apprentice Training Rates, Journal of Industrial Relations, Vol. 45, No. 4, December, 2003, 457-484
11. The Occupational and Skill Structure of New Apprenticeships: A Commentary, Labour and Industry, Vol. 13, No.1, August, 2002, 55-72
12. APEC Labour Markets: Structural Change and the Asian Financial Crisis, Journal of Contemporary Asia, Vol. 31, No. 4, 2001, 491-532 (co-authored with C. Stahl and T. Feridhanusetyawan
13. No Case to Answer: Productivity Performance of the Australian Construction Industry, The Economic and Labour Relations Review, Vol. 12, No.1, June, 2001, 104-125 (co-authored with Roy Green, N. Croce and B. Mills)
14. History vs. Equilibrium and the theory of economic growth by M. Setterfield: a comment, Cambridge Journal of Economics, Vol. 25, No.1, January, 2001, 97-102
15. Trade Apprenticeships in the Australian Construction Industry, Labour and Industry, Vol. 11, No.2, December, 2000, 39-58
16. Changes in Industrial Structure in the Australian Construction Industry: Causes and Implications, The Economic and Labour Relations Review, Vol. 11, No.2 December, 2000, 291-307
17. Manufacturing Industry in the Australian Economy: Its Role and Significance, Journal of Australian Political Economy, No. 45, June, 2000, 18-45
18. On the Wrong Track? An Analysis of the Suitability of Contracting-out for Rail Track Maintenance, Economic Analysis and Policy, Vol. 29, No.2, September, 1999, 117-131 (co-authored with Richard Denniss)
19. Trends in NSW Government Apprenticeship Intake: Causes and Implications, Australian Bulletin of Labour, Vol. 24, No.2, June, 1998, 141-157
20. A Note on the Use of Australian Input-Output Data for Occupational Analysis, Australian Journal of Regional Studies, No.7, October, 1994, 1-6 (co-authored with Dr Peter Phibbs)
21. A Note on New Labour Market Data for the Building and Construction Industry, (Disaggregated Employment-Output Coefficients in the Australian Construction Industry), Australian Bulletin of Labour, Vol. 15, No.2, March, 1989, 139-142
22. The Crisis of Equipment Investment in Australia, Journal of Australian Political Economy, No. 22. February, 1988, 39-56
23. Public Sector and Private Sector Employment Programs as Competing Solutions to Unemployment, Australian Journal of Social Issues, Volume 20, No.1, 1985, 56-71
1. On the Wrong Track. The Impact of Contracting-out by Rail Services Australia on Regional Economies and the Labour Market, Employment Studies Centre, Working Paper, No. 38 University of Newcastle, October 1998. (co-authored with Richard Denniss), pp. 40
2. Social Change and Development in the Asia Pacific: A Human Resource Perspective in Analysing Social Transformation, Centre for Asia Pacific Social Transformation Studies, University of Newcastle and Wollongong, Working Paper No1, June, 1999 (co-authored with C. Stahl), pp. 73-85
3. The Impact of Trade Liberalisation on the Labour Market in the Asia Pacific Region, Centre for Asia Pacific Social Transformation Studies, University of Newcastle and Wollongong, (co-authored with T. Feridhanusetyawan and C. Stahl), 2001. pp. 50
4. The Occupational and Skill Structure of New Apprenticeships: A Commentary, Australian Centre for Industrial Relations Research and Training, University of Sydney Working Paper No. 74, pp. 35, March 2002.
5. North Asian Post-war Industry Policy and the Theory of Circular and Cumulative Causation, School of Economics and Political Science, University of Sydney, Working Paper No. ECOP2003-2, November 2003. ISSN 1446-3814.
6. The Survival and Decline of the Apprenticeship System in the Australian and UK Construction Industries, Australian Centre for Industrial Relations Research and Training, University of Sydney, Working Paper No. 96, pp. 25, March 2005.
ISBN 1 86487 715 4.
1. The Origins and Development of Cumulative Causation Theory, History of Economic Thought Society of Australia, 1998 Conference, Sydney.
2. Deconstructing Vocational Education in Australia: The Construction Industry, Skills, Training and Flexibility-Year 2000 and Beyond Conference. November 1999, University of Newcastle, Department of Management
3. Supply and Demand-Side Explanations of Declining Apprentice Training Rates: A Critical Overview, 11th Annual VET/TAFE Research Conference, Brisbane, July, 2002
4. Declining Apprentice Training Rates: Causes, Consequences and Solutions, Keynote Speaker, Dusseldorp Skills Forum Roundtable, Australian Technology Park, Sydney, 21st July 2003
5. VET as an Innovation Intermediary. A Pilot Study, 13th Annual VET/TAFE Research Conference, Tweed Heads, July, 2004
6. The Survival and Decline of the Apprenticeship System in the Australian and UK Construction Industries, Paper presented at the 19th Conference of the Association of Industrial Relations Academics of Australian and New Zealand, Sydney, 9-11 February, University of Sydney, 2005.
7. Recent Data on Business Innovation in Australia, Recent Advances in Innovation Analysis in Australia, Conference, Department of Industry, Science and Tourism, Hyatt Hotel, Canberra, 20th April 2006
8. Trades Skill Formation, Skilled Migration and Temporary Labour Flows, Asia Pacific Skilled Migration to Australia Workshop, Centre for Research and Social Inclusion, Macquarie University, 19-20th April 2007 (Richard Woolley co-author)
9. The Role and Contribution of Tradespeople and Technicians in Australian Research & Development, NCVER Research Forum: Fostering enterprise. The innovation and skills nexus, Australian Technology Park Conference Centre, Sydney, 9th November 2010
10. Contracting-out Publicly Funded Vocational Training; The Role of Work Organisation in Skills for Innovation in Firms (The latter with John Stanwick), 20th National Vocational Education and Training Research Conference, Coffs Harbour, 13-15 July 2011. Sponsored jointly by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research and North Coast TAFE
Refereed Conference Papers
1. Long run shifts in the industry and workforce structure of the Australian construction industry: Implications fora sustainable labour supply, Association of Industrial Relations Academics of Australia and New Zealand Conference Proceedings, 2005, 503-510.
1. Charles P. Blitch, Allyn Young: The Peripatetic Economist, Macmillan Press, London, 1995, Journal of Australian Political Economy, June 1997, No.39. pp.143-145.
2. James Angresano, The Political Economy of Gunnar Myrdal, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK and Lyme, US 1997, Journal of Economic Studies, 1998 Vol.25, No.4, pp.346-349
3. Putting Social Democratic Values Back Into Globalisation. (A review article). Chris Sheil (2001) (ed.) Globalisation. Australian Impacts, Sydney: UNSW Press, and Duncan Kerr (2001) Elect the Ambassador! Building Democracy in a Globalised World Sydney, Pluto Press, in The Drawing Board. Australian Review of Public Affairs, (An E-Journal of the Department of Economics and Politics, University of Sydney).
4. Vocational Education. International Approaches, Developments and Systems, Linda Clarke and Christopher Winch (eds.), Routledge, London and New York, 2007 CLR News No3/2007, European Institute for Construction Labour Research, pp.39-41
5. Vocational Training. International Perspectives (eds) Gerhard Bosch and Jean Charest, Routledge, New York and UK, The Economic and Labour Relations Review Vol. 20, No. 2, July 2010: 135-140
Recent Commissioned Research Reports
1. Mapping the Building and Construction Product System, Australian Expert Group in Industry Studies, University of Western Sydney, Macarthur (co-authored with Jane Marceau and John Houghton) for the Department of Industry Science and Resources, May 1999. pp.197, Ausinfo, Canberra, ISR 1999/041
2. Executive Remuneration in Australia. A Preliminary Study, for the Evatt Foundation Research Report, June 1999. pp.19
3. Long-run Performance of the Victorian Economy and Manufacturing Industry, Employment Studies Centre, University of Newcastle, (co-authored with Roy Green), June 1999, No.99/9. Victorian Labor Council, pp.35
4. Constructing the Future. A Study of Major Building and Construction in Australia, Employment Studies Centre, University of Newcastle, (co-authored with Nic Croce, Roy Green and Bob Mills), August 1999, ESC Research Report No.99/1. CFMEU, pp.166
5. NSW Government Industry Policy. A Submission to the NSW Parliamentary Accounts Committee Inquiry into Assistance to NSW Industry, Employment Studies Centre, University of Newcastle, (co-authored with Roy Green), August 1999, ESC Research Report No.99/18, AMWU, pp. 85.
6. Industrial Re-Structuring in the Non-Residential and Engineering Construction Industry and its Implications for Skills Shortages and Training, Employment Studies Centre, University of Newcastle, Construction Training Australia, 2001, pp.102
7. An Evaluation of the Next Step Program. A Labour Market Adjustment Program for Redundant Coal Industry Workers, Industry Programs Directorate, NSW Department of Education and Training, 2001, pp.65
8. Issues for Workforce 2007: A Discussion Paper for the Construction Training Australia Board Workshop, Construction Training Australia, 2002, pp. 60
9. The Emerging Training Needs of the NSW Manufacturing and Engineering Sector, Australian Expert Group in Industry Studies, NSW TAFE Commission, 2002, pp. 90
10. Trends in NSW Construction Apprenticeships and Traineeships, Australian Expert Group in Industry Studies, Building Workers’ Assistance Centre. 2004, pp. 35
11. The Role of Group Training in Increasing The Participation of Older Workers in Traditional Apprenticeships, Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry/Group Training Australia, 2005
12. Analysis of the Effectiveness of Subsidies for the Employment of Apprentices and Trainees Department of Education, Science and Training, 2006 (with Mark Cully)
13. The Effect of Temporary of Skilled Migration on Skill Formation and the Labour Market, Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union, 2006
14. Evaluation of the Effectiveness and Efficiency of Pre-vocational Programmes, NSW Board of Vocational Education and Training, 2007
15. An Innovation Strategy for the NSW Manufacturing Council, Department of State and Regional Development, 2007
16. The Role of Technical Colleges in Australia’s Innovation System, Industry Canada, 2008
17. The Role of Vocational Education in the Australian National Innovation System: A Synthesis of Research, Department of Education Employment and Workplace Relations, 2008
18. Building Innovative Capability Review of the Australian Textile, Clothing and Footwear Industries, 2008, Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Canberra (I was Principal Economic and Industry Policy Adviser to Professor Roy Green’s Inquiry into Australia’s TCF Industries. I wrote chapter 3 Australia’s TCF Industries and chapter 5 Changing Role of Industry Policy) http://www.innovation.gov.au/tcfreview/Documents/401_TCFreviewvol1.pdf
Personal Submissions to Government Inquiries
1. Senate Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology, Inquiry Into Certain Aspects of Australia’s Manufacturing Industry Revitalisation, 1988 (Written submission)
2. Senate Select Committee on the Socio-Economic Consequences of National Competition Policy, 1999 (Written submission)
3. Senate Employment, Workplace Relations and Education References Committee, Senate Inquiry Into the Quality of Vocational Education in Australia, 2003 (Written submission and appearance before the Inquiry in Sydney)
4. Senate Employment, Workplace Relations and Education References Committee, Inquiry Into the Building and Construction Industry, 2004. (Written submission and appearance before the Inquiry in Sydney).
5. House of Representatives Standing Committee on Employment, Workplace Relations and Workforce Participation, Inquiry Into Employment in the Automotive Component Manufacturing Industry, 2006 (Written submission).
6. Productivity Commission. Draft Research Report into the Vocational Education and Training Workforce, 2011 (Written Submission).
British Journal of Industrial Relations
Cambridge Journal of Economics
Review of Political Economy
International Journal of Operations and Production Management
Education + Training
The Journal of Industrial Relations
The Economic and Labour Relations Review
The Journal of Australian Political Economy
Labour & Industry
Transactions of Multi-Disciplinary Engineering (Institution of Engineers, Australia)