Analysis and advice for education policy and delivery


Analysis and advice for education policy and delivery

Australia’s premier education analysis and advisory team

Our mission is to influence and empower policymakers and institutions to drive meaningful improvement in outcomes for individuals and communities through education.

Our work

We conduct analysis and provide advice that resonates with policymakers, practitioners, learners and their families. Our work is based on an in-depth knowledge of the education sector – from early childhood through to schooling, vocational training and higher education – and a comprehensive understanding of the nation’s dynamic policy and regulatory environment.

Our highly experienced partners and directors lead a dynamic team of multi-disciplinary professionals, with backgrounds spanning labour market economics, econometrics, program evaluation, teaching, the public service, law and think tanks. Our team blends policy researchers, strategy advisers, quantitative experts proficient in model building and in drawing insights from education and labour market data, and qualitative experts with deep expertise in social research, as well as developmental, process and impact evaluations. We are part of a global network of experts in education policy and collaborate with leading academic partners, including on research and innovation.

Since 2008, we have supported state and federal governments in the development and review of major education policies and advised universities and other education institutes on matters core to their offering, pricing and workforce strategies.

We are committed to and value working collaboratively with clients and the learners and communities they serve. We know that educators and education leaders, families and children, apprentices and students are at the heart of all endeavours to improve the performance and equity of education systems. We are deliberate, thoughtful and ethical in ensuring they are at the heart of everything we do.

Our capabilities

Our team of education experts apply the latest quantitative and qualitative techniques across all our work. We regularly publish in academic journals, speak at key summits and author thought leadership reports.

We offer the following capabilities:

  • Evaluation: a suite of policy and program evaluation offerings spanning developmental, process and impact evaluations, supported by strong primary and secondary data collection capabilities, and advanced qualitative and quantitative techniques, leading to applied evaluative insights.
  • Funding model design, pricing and costing analysis: the development of funding, pricing and costing models and analysis informed by deep sectoral expertise and empirical methods, including econometric methods, benchmarking and efficiency frontier analysis.
  • Cost-benefit, economic impact and economic contribution analysis: rigorous analysis of programs, policies and other initiatives to inform government and business decisions, drawing on our proprietary economic models, including the Deloitte Access Economics Computable General Equilibrium model of the Australian economy.
  • Research: conducting studies on effective classroom practice, including the development of resources and tools to support students with disability, students experiencing engagement challenges, and students for whom English is an additional language.
  • Strategy and policy review: practical and evidence-based advice on education strategy and policy, underpinned by detailed analytical frameworks and informed by consultation with policymakers and target groups.
  • Model development and testing: development of user-friendly, dynamic models used by policymakers and businesses for strategic projects or for ongoing operations, with the capability to be delivered in Excel, R, Stata, SAS or other analytical packages, supported by in-depth user-guides and hands-on training and ongoing technical support.
  • Demand forecasting: robust empirical analysis and market research to inform projections of demand for education services, for different student types (including international students), levels and fields of education, and across different geographies.

We ensure all our analysis is tailored to the unique circumstances of each assignment and geared towards transferring knowledge to our clients.

By thoughtfully combining our renowned and ever-expanding capabilities, we are constantly extending the depth and richness of the advice we provide.

Our experience

Deloitte Access Economics has a deep and contemporary understanding of the Australian education sector, having advised governments - at the state and federal level - on the most significant reforms over recent years. We are proud of our commitment to providing governments with timely, innovative and practical analysis that directly informs policy development and refinement.

The vast majority of our work is not publicly released. Where our reports are available to the public, links are provided.

Our leadership team 

Early childhood education and care

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Vocational training

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Higher education

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International education

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Inclusive education

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Contact us

Lachlan Smirl

Lachlan Smirl

Partner, Deloitte Access Economics

Lachlan is a partner with Deloitte Access Economics and the leader of its Education Policy Practice. His experience spans more than a decade and has seen him lead large scale policy reviews in early c... More

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