Matthew grew up in Logan just south of Brisbane. https://www.mattcanavan.com.au/
After achieving a First Class Honours Degree in Economics at the University of Queensland, Matthew worked at the Productivity Commission where he eventually rose to the level of Director.
During that time Matthew worked on projects ranging from competition laws, housing affordability to counting the number of policies that Australian governments have introduced to tackle climate change (the answer was 244).
Becoming increasingly frustrated at the lack of coherent economic policy by the Rudd Government, Matthew went to work for Barnaby Joyce as his Chief-of-Staff ahead of the 2010 election. In that role, Matthew helped develop policies to provide tax concessions for vital infrastructure and to encourage people to move to the regions, worked on a Senate inquiry that recommended stricter environmental controls on coal seam gas developments and developed a Coalition report on the potential to invest in new dams throughout Australia.