Professor Allan Fels AO graduated in economics (first class honours) and law from the University of Western Australia in 1965. He has a PhD in Economics from Duke University and was a research fellow in the Department of Applied Economics at the University of Cambridge from 1986-1972, where he wrote The British Prices and Incomes Board
(Cambridge University Press, 1972).
On his return to Australia Professor Fels joined the Economics Department of Monash University as a Senior Lecturer, before becoming Professor of Administration and Director of the Graduate School of Management from 1984 until 1991.
The career of Professor Fels in Australia falls into two parts. He was generally regarded as the nation’s leading regulator, serving as inaugural Chair of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (and its predecessor bodies) from 1989 until 2003. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is the country’s regulator of competition law and consumer law; it also regulates public utilities in the telecommunications and energy industries (in a similar manner to industry-specific bodies such as Ofcom in the UK and FCC in the US). He has had numerous other regulatory roles (for example, in insurance, agriculture, telecommunications and aviation).
Professor Fels was regarded throughout Australia as a very successful and effective regulator. He was and remains a household name and was ranked by The Australian Financial Review as Australia’s third most powerful figure in 2002; he is the subject of the biography Allan Fels, A Portrait of Power
, by Fred Brenchley (John Wiley Publishers, 2003).
Professor Fels remains a leading figure globally in competition policy. He co-chaired the OECD Trade and Competition Committee from 1996 to 2003 and continues regularly to be a keynote speaker at major global competition events including the world’s two peak events, the Internati