Business in Auckland

Chief Economist Unit

A view of the Auckland sky line

The Chief Economist Unit advises on critical economic issues for Auckland. This helps to better inform decisions by our elected representatives, council staff, businesses and households.


Meet the team

David Norman, Chief Economist

David Norman, Chief Economist

David's areas of focus include:

  • communicating key findings of research to elected officials, council staff and the public
  • providing economic advice to elected officials and council staff
  • housing affordability
  • cost-benefit analysis
  • peer review.

Email David Norman

Harshal Chitale, Senior Economist

Harshal Chitale, Senior Economist

Harshal's areas of focus include:

  • cost benefit analysis
  • economics of urban infrastructure and housing
  • competition economics
  • applied game theory.

Email Harshal Chitale


What we do

  • We advise elected members, executive leadership, and the public on the economic costs and benefits of critical Auckland issues.
  • We work with the wider public and the private sectors.
  • We provide economic advice and analysis for Auckland issues including housing affordability, the funding of infrastructure for Auckland, and urban land markets.

Some of the activities the Chief Economist Unit has worked on include advising on:

  • outlook and drivers of the Auckland and New Zealand economy
  • use of price signals to inform policy and investments
  • infrastructure economics (including funding and financing)
  • using price signals to inform policy and investments
  • cost-effectiveness reviews (Local Government Act section 17a).
  • research on housing affordability and urban economics
  • impact of urban development on freshwater quality
    • wider economic benefits
    • unintended consequences of policy options.

For other enquiries, email the Chief Economist Unit.

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