Portrait of Dr Robert O'Neill Dr Robert O'Neill

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r.o'neill@hud.ac.uk | 01484 471853


Position: Senior Lecturer in Economics, Department of Accountancy, Finance and Economics
Qualifications: BA, MSc, PhD


Rob is currently a Senior Lecturer in Economics and began working at the University of Huddersfield in September 2013.

Rob is originally from Heywood in North Manchester and joined to the University of Huddersfield in order to pursue an academic career which would allow him to further develop his research and teaching interests.

After completing his first degree in economics, with an accounting specialism at the Victoria University of Manchester, Rob began working at PriceWaterhouseCoopers as an auditor, primarily working with insurance companies such as the Royal & Sun Alliance and Royal Liver.

After completing his PhD thesis Rob worked as an economist at Bury Council, providing analysis of adult care services, with a focus on pricing telecare systems available in the area, and performing cost-benefit analysis of the technology. Following this,he moved to Wales where he began work in the methodology department of the Office for National Statistics, where he worked primarily on index number methodology and on methods employed in the National Accounts. Significant pieces of work completed at ONS included an analysis of consumer demand, and its implications for price indices and providing technical support to the National Statistician's review of the Retail Prices Index. He retains an interest in the area of inflation measurement co-authored a textbook on the subject in collaboration with colleagues at ONS in 2015.

While a PhD student at Manchester Rob taught on modules including Econometrics, Microeconomics, Business Forecasting and Marketing Research, and while at ONS he also designed and taught a range of courses related to index number construction for a range of audiences.

Research and Scholarship

Rob has two main areas of research interest. The first is financial econometrics, with a particular focus on the forecasting of return volatilities for a portfolio of assets. The second is measurement methods for inflation, this includes the economic rationale for such measures and how this might be related to the cost of living for individuals or households.

After two years as an accountant Robert returned to the University of Manchester on the award of an ESRC 1+3 studentship. He completed an MSc in Economics and Econometrics in 2007 and began planning his PhD research in the area of financial econometrics. His PhD thesis focused on the forecasting of the volatility of returns of a portfolio of stocks (and was divided into three chapters.) The first two chapters of the thesis introduced new methods for forecasting the variance-covariance matrix for a portfolio of stocks and the third questioned whether the additional complexity in mulitivariate models represented an improvement in terms of forecasting the volatility of the overall portfolio returns. Rob retains an active interest in this area and hopes to extend his research in this area in the future.

Publications and Other Research Outputs


O'Neill, R (2016) ‘How to use index numbers in economicsEconomic Review , 33 (3).

Ercole, R. and O'Neill, R. (2016) ‘The Influence of Agglomeration Externalities on Manufacturing Growth Within Indonesian LocationsGrowth and Change . ISSN 0017-4815


O’Neill, R (2015) ‘Teaching Index Numbers to economistsCogent Economics & Finance , 3 (1), p. 1115625. ISSN 2332-2039

Ralph, J., O'Neill, R. and Winton, J. (2015) A practical introduction to index numbers . Oxford, UK: Wiley. ISBN 978-1-118-97781-1

Clews, G., O'Neill, R. and Ralph, J. (2015) ‘The Methodology Used to Estimate the Standard Errors of Movement in the UK House Price IndexSurvey Methodology Bulletin , 73, pp. 77-87.


  • ESRC 1+3 Studentship award holder (2007-2011)
  • IAOS Young Statistician of the year runner up 2012
  • Member of VOA expert working group on index numbers 2016

Research Degree Supervision

Teaching and Professional Activities

Rob teaches the modules Introductory Quantitative Economics, Econometrics and Economic Statistcs.