Robert is currently a full-time Commissioner with the Productivity Commission, having been appointed for a five year term in 2004. The Commission is the Australian Government’s independent review and advisory body on microeconomic policy and regulation.
Upon graduating from the University of NSW in 1979 Robert practiced as a commercial solicitor for over 20 years including with Clayton Utz, C.R.Fieldhouse and his own firm. He was also retained as a senior consultant with Horwath NSW and has extensive commercial experience. Yet he was also attracted to areas of important public policy and served on the National Competition Council for five years.
Robert has also been actively committed to social policy and action since his university days. He was formerly NSW Community and Disability Services Commissioner and has over 25 years voluntary involvement in the community services sector. This has included previously as President of the Australian Council of Social Service; State President of the St Vincent de Paul Society (NSW Chairman, JOBfutures Limited. and a member of Caritas Australia’s national committee He was the founding Chair of the National Roundtable of Nonprofit Organizations, the national peak body representing the not for profit sector.
Robert holds degrees in law and commerce from the University of NSW and is a recipient of the University’s Alumni Award. He was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1994 and holds an honorary doctorate from the Australian Catholic University. He is a member of a number of university advisory boards.