Simon is currently undertaking PhD studies into the political economy of China’s local government debt. He is also keenly focussed on UK, Australian, and Queensland politics; especially the psephology of the latter.
Simon’s teaching and research interests draw a range of experience: as a journalist, a ministerial staffer, consultant and – perhaps most formatively – his time spent studying political economy at both the University of Sydney and the University of Queensland.
The University of Queensland, through the School of Political Science and International Studies, partnered with the ABC and Vox Pop Labs for the ‘Vote Compass Queensland election 2015’ project. Simon and Lorann Downer led UQ’s involvement, and were members of the consultant academic panel which provided expertise and advice for the project. Results from Vote Compass will feed into their teaching of the POLS3107 - Queensland: People and Politics course.
Simon provided media commentary on the Vote Compass project. Also, drawing on his experience as a journalist, media advisor, and knowledge of Queensland politics, he was instrumental in the preparation of analysis and “talking points” with respect to various Vote Compass reports delivered to the academic panel during the Queensland election campaign.