Grammar Graduate: Josephine Auer (2015)

Grammar Woman and recipient of The Lady Lilley Gold Medal for Dux of the School, Josephine Auer (2015), recently graduated with Class I Honours from a Bachelor of Advanced Finance and Economics (BAFE) (Hons) at The University of Queensland (UQ). Josephine graduated with a perfect GPA of 7.0 and was Valedictorian of the Economics School.

Josephine’s academic potential was recognised on numerous occasions throughout her degree. She was the recipient of a Vice Chancellor’s Scholarship, the Archibald Economics Scholarship and a bursary for the top performing female BAFE student.

Proud to have been awarded the Australasian Agricultural & Resources Economics Society Undergraduate Prize for her Honours thesis, Josephine has also enjoyed the opportunity to gain industry experience with internships at the RBA, QIC, Morgans and Synergies Economic Consulting.

Currently working in the Business, Economics and Law Faculty at UQ as a Research Assistant, Josephine plans to continue working on her thesis with a view to publish. This year, Josephine also commenced studying in the UQ Mathematics School in preparation for entry into a postgraduate economic program overseas. Amidst her busy schedule, Josephine found time to speak to the School about her studies and plans for next year.

What motivated and/or inspired you to undertake honours?

I’ve always really enjoyed studying, and I found myself wanting to come back to the academic side of things after completing internships in the business world. Now that I’m in my final year of the BAFE degree, I feel I’ve really found my passion in microeconomics, and have loved the opportunity to take some more advanced courses in this area, and explore some interesting aspects of game theory in my thesis.

What is the topic of your honours thesis?

I’m working on an experimental paper that considers the effect of different reverse auction mechanisms on strategic bidding behaviour and efficiency outcomes. This analysis is motivated by the use of such auctions—particularly in the public sector—in allocating various rights and goods for which standard markets do not exist.

What do you want to do after honours?

I’m still yet to decide on my plans for next year. I had a wonderful experience interning with the RBA last year, and have been offered an opportunity to return there next year as an Economics and Finance Graduate. However, I really do enjoy academia and have loved completing the more challenging economics courses with such an inspiring group of peers, so feel I am perhaps not yet done with uni! After taking some graduate mathematics courses, I think I’ll have more of an idea about whether a career in the public sector will be a good fit for me, or whether entering a postgraduate degree in economics may better align with my interests.