Dr Ben FreyensResearch Partner


Address: Office C13, Building 11, University of Canberra Phone: +61 (0) 2 6201 5462


Canberra School of Politics, Economics and Society


Faculty of Business, Government & Law - University of Canberra

Research Interests

Economics of employment protection laws; Spectrum policy and economics; Personnel economics, workforce planning; Inequality, poverty and social capital and Optimal contracting of human services

Connect with Ben


Ben Freyens is Associate Professor of Economics at the Faculty of Business, Government & Law. He is a labour economist specialised in the study of employment protection regulation and the arbitration of dismissal disputes.  He also has a strong research agenda in the economics of radio spectrum allocation, having conducted several research projects for the Australian Communications and Media Authority on spectrum economics, frequency licensing and radio transmission technologies. In his earlier working life, he was a statistical expert at Eurostat, Luxembourg, and taught economics at Deakin University, at the College of University of New South Wales, at University of Wollongong and at the Australian National University.



Selected Publications:

  • Freyens BP and P Oslington (2021) “The Impact of Unfair Dismissal Regulation:  Evidence from an Australian Natural Experiment”, Labour, 35 (2), 264 – 290

  • Freyens BP and X Gong (2020) “Judicial Arbitration of Unfair Dismissal Cases: The Role of Peer Effects. International Review of Law & Economics, 64, Dec 2020 doi.org/10.1016/j.irle.2020.105947

  • Freyens BP and X Gong (2017) “Judicial Decision-Making under Changing Legal Standards”, Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization 133 (1), 108 – 126

  • Kim C, Nakanishi H, Blackman D, Freyens BP and AM Benson (2017) “The Effect of Social Capital on Community Co-production: Towards Community-oriented Development in Post-disaster Recovery”, Procedia Engineering 180, 901 – 911

  • Caputo M and BP Freyens (2017) “Royalties, Entry and Spectrum Allocation to Broadcasting”, Journal of Public Economic Theory 19 (6) 1081 – 1098

  • Freyens BP (2017) “Spectrum Assignment at the Extensive and Intensive Edges”, Wireless Personal Communications 96 (3) 3499 - 3514

  • Dinh, H, Freyens BP, and A Daly (2016) “Farm adjustment strategies to water-related challenges in the Murray-Darling Basin”, Policy Studies 38 (5) 482 – 501

  • Mann, S, Freyens BP, and H Dinh (2016) “Crises and structural change in Australian agriculture” Review of the Social Economy 75 (1) 76-87

  • Dinh, H., Freyens BP, Daly, A and Y Vidyattama (2016) “Measuring Community Economic Resilience in Australia: Estimates of Recent Levels and Trends”, Social Indicators Research 132 (3) 1217 – 1236

  • Barker, G. and Freyens, B.P. (2015), “The Economics of the European Commission’s Recommendation on Collective Redress”. In “Collective Redress in Europe”, BIICL - British Institute of International and Comparative Law

  • Booth, J. F. and Freyens, B. P. (2014). “A Study of Political Activism in Labour Courts”, Economics Letters, 123 (3), 370-73
  • Freyens B.P., Loney M. And Dissanayake, T. (2014). “Dynamic Usage of Narrowband Spectrum”, Telecommunications Policy, 38 (2): 173 – 85
  •  Freyens B. P. and Jones C. (2014). “Efficient Allocation of Radio Spectrum”, Journal of Public Economic Theory, 16 (1) 1-23
  • Ackland, R., Dowrick, S. & Freyens B. P. (2013). “Measuring Global Poverty: Why PPP Methods Matter”, Review of Economics and Statistics, 95 (3): 813–24
  • Freyens B.P. and Loney M. (2013). “Emerging Issues in White Space Regulation”, Telecommunications Policy, 37 (2-3), 208 - 18
  • Freyens B.P. and Oslington P. (2013). “A First Look at Incidence and Outcomes of Unfair Dismissal Claims under Fair Work, Work Choices and the Workplace Relations Act”, Australian Journal of Labour Economics, 16 (2), 295 - 306
  • Freyens B. P. (2012). “Licensing Options for Digital Dividend Spectrum” in G. Faulhaber, G. Madden and J. Petchey (Eds.) Regulation and the Economic Performance of Communication and Information Networks, p. 268 – 83; 384 pp. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham. ISBN – 9780857930989
  • Freyens B. P. and Loney M. (2012). “Projecting Regulatory Requirements for UHF White Space” in Saeed R.A. and S.J. Shellhammer (Ed.) Wireless Networks in the TV White Space: Concepts, Techniques and Applications, p. 43-68; 509 pp.Taylor & Francis/CRC Press, ISBN-9781439848791
  • Freyens B.P. (2012). “On the Efficiency Objectives of Spectrum reforms”, International Journal of Management and Network Economics, 2 (3), 392 - 408
  • Freyens B.P. (2012). “Digital Radio and Market Failure: A Tale of Two Complementary Platforms”, Info - Journal of Policy Regulations and Strategy for Telecommunications, 14 (5), 3 - 20
  • Freyens B.P. (2011). “Dismissal Disputes and the Incentives to Bargain: Estimates of the Contract Zone”, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, 64 (3), 576 – 98
  • Freyens B.P. and Yerokhin, O. (2011). “Allocative vs. Productive Spectrum Efficiency” Telecommunications Policy, 35 (4), 291 – 300
  • Butcher J. R. and Freyens B.P. (2011). “Competition and Collaboration in the Contracting of Family Relationship Centres”, Australian Journal of Public Administration, 70 (1), 15-33
  • Freyens B. P. (2011). “The Mesoeconomics of Social Industries” in Mann S. (Ed.) Exploring Mesoeconomics, p. 219-38; 252 pp. Springer Verlag. ISBN-9783642181252
  • Freyens B. P. and Loney M. (2011). “Land of White Space Opportunity: Channel Planning and Digital Restack in Australia”, Info - Journal of Policy Regulations and Strategy for Telecommunications, 14 (4), 30-41
  • Wanna, J., Butcher, J. and Freyens B.P. (2010). Policy into Action: The Challenges of Service Delivery, 321 pp. UNSW Press, Sydney
  • Freyens B.P. (2010). “Measuring Firing Costs: The Case for Direct Methods”, International Labour Review, 149 (3), 287-313
  • Freyens B.P. (2010). “Shared or Exclusive Radio Waves? A Dilemma Gone Astray”, Telematics and Informatics, 27 (3), 293-304
  • Freyens B.P. (2010). “Minding the Gap in Spectrum Law”, Telecommunications Journal of Australia, 60 (1), 61-74
  • Freyens B.P. (2010). “Managing Workforce Shortages in the Australian Public Service”, Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources, 48 (3), 262-86
  • Freyens B.P. (2009). “An Economics Spectrum for Spectrum Economics”, Information Economics and Policy, 21 (2), 128-144
  • Freyens B.P. (2008). “Macro-, Meso- and Microeconomic Considerations in the Delivery of Social Services”, International Journal of Social Economics, 35 (11), 823-845
  • Freyens B.P. & Oslington, P. (2007). “Dismissal Costs and their Impact on Employment: Evidence from Australian Small and Medium Enterprises” (2007), Economic Record, 83 (260), 1-15
  • Freyens B.P. & Martin, M..(2007). “Multidisciplinary Knowledge Transfer in Training Multimedia Projects”, Journal of European Industrial Training, 31 (9), 680–705
  • Freyens B.P. (2006). “Measures of Training Costs in Australia” (2006), Management Research Review, 29,(8) pp. 495-511
  • Freyens B.P. & Oslington, P. (2005). “The Likely Employment Impact of Removing Unfair Dismissal Protection”, Journal of Australian Political Economy, 55 (Dec.), 56-65

Other Publications:

  • Freyens, B.P. (2015) “Submission to the Workplace Relations Inquiry”, 13 March 2015: Productivity Commission, Commonwealth of Australia. This is a 9000 words submission available as 'submission 149' at http://www.pc.gov.au/inquiries/current/workplace-relations/submissions
  • Freyens, B.P., & Alexander, S.  (2015), “Policy Objectives and Spectrum Rights for Future Network Developments”, IEEE DySPAN, Stockholm, 29 Sep – 02 Oct 2015 (published in IEEE Xplore, at www.ieee.org).
  • Freyens, B.P. (2014), “Submission to the Spectrum Review”, 27 June 2014: Department of Communications, Commonwealth of Australia. This is a 7000 words submission available at: http://www.communications.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0018/242712/B._Freyens.pdf
  • Freyens, B.P., & Loney M.  (2011), “Digital Switchover and Regulatory Design for Competing White Space Usage Rights”, IEEE DySPAN, Aachen, 3-6 May 2011 (published in IEEE Xplore, at www.ieee.org).
  • Freyens, B.P., & Loney M.  (2011), “Opportunities for White Space Usage in Australia”, IEEE VITAE, Chennai, 29 February – 4 March 2011 (published in IEEE Xplore, at www.ieee.org).
  • Freyens, B.P., Loney M., & Poole, M.  (2010), “Wireless Regulations and Dynamic Spectrum Access in Australia”, IEEE DySPAN, Singapore, 6-9April 2010 (published in IEEE Xplore, at www.ieee.org).
  • Freyens, B.P. (2010), "Digital Radio Transmission Technologies”, Contract 10ACMA011 for the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), June 2010
  • Freyens, B.P. (2009), "A Review of Radiocommunication Licensing”, Report 09/ACMA025 for the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), June 2009
  • Freyens, B.P. (2007), "The Economics of Spectrum Management”, Report PO10788 for the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), June 2007



Research Projects & Grants
  • 2022: Assessing Workforce Shortages and Identifying Barriers To Workforce Attraction In The ACT ($149,605) w/ R. Johns, N. Dale, X. Gong and J. Fear.

  • 2021-2023: ARC Discovery Project DP 210101643 ($217,782.50)– “Gambling and families” w/. CI R Breunig (ANU), X Gong (UC) and S Stillman (UbZ).

  • 2016-2018: Toyota Foundation grant ‎(¥4,000,000): “The role of volunteers in long-term disaster recovery: facilitating co-production for resilient communities” (w/. D. Blackman, H. Nakanishi, and A. Benson).
  • 2012-2015: MDB CRN grant (A$225,561): ‘Modelling Community Adjustment to Water Trading in the Murray-Darling Basin’ (w/. P. Lewis, A. Daly and H. Dinh)
  • 2010-2012: ARC Discovery Project DP0988956 – A Comparative Law and Economics Analysis of Class Actions in Australia, the US and the UK (CI Prof G Barker, College of Law, ANU)

  • 2007-2009: ARC Linkage Project LP0562398 – Improving Decision-Making in Government Service Provision Using Third Party Providers (CI Prof. J Wanna, ANU / ANZSOG) Post doctorate fellow.

PhD Supervision

Area of Supervision:

  • Economics of employment protection laws
  • Spectrum policy and economics
  • Personnel economics, workforce planning
  • Inequality, poverty and social capital 
  • Optimal contracting of human services

Involvement in PHD supervisory panels:


  • Gerald LEONG (Singapore program), ‘Smart contracting with digital currencies’  - with M Sathye and J Hawkins
  • David LEONG (Singapore program), ‘What drives entrepreneurial actions?’ – with A. Saleh (Primary)
  • Yuyang CHEN, ‘Informal childcare provision and labour supply’ – with X Gong (Primary)
  • Zuhairan YUNAN, ‘Impact of Corruption on Regional Economics in Indonesia’ – with Y Vidyattama (Primary) and I Mohanti

Honours program:

  • Rhys O’NEIL, ‘Barriers & incentives: Factors affecting the labour market outcomes of indigenous mothers’– completed Nov 2018 [First Class Hons]
  • Paul JENKINS, ‘An Economic Perspective on the Private Value of Altruism’ – completed May 2018 [First Class Hons]
  • Kate WRIGHT, ‘Exploring the link between occupational sex segregation and socio-economic status’ – completed Feb 2017 [First Class Hons]
  • Kai Ooi ZHONG, ‘Farmers’ Adjustment Strategies to the Millennium Drought and Flow-on Profitability Effects’ - completed Nov 2015 [2015 AARES undergraduate award]
  • Alfred COOK, ‘Indigenous identity and self-selection’ - completed Nov 2014 [First Class Hons]
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