Bonnie Colby

Professor; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin, 1983; Economics of Environmental Policy and Natural Resource Management, Valuation of Public Goods and Environmental Amenities, Water Resource Economics, Economics of Environmental Negotiations and Conflict Resolution
(520) 621-4775

Teaching and Research Interests

Dr. Colby’s research, teaching, and outreach focus on economic tradeoffs in water and energy management, climate change adaptation, and incentive-based agreements to improve water supply reliability for agricultural, environmental, and urban needs. Colby has provided invited testimony in her areas of expertise to state legislatures, state and federal courts, and the U.S. Congress, and has taught at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government Executive Training Programs. She works with western states, federal agencies, private firms, water districts, and NGOs to develop and implement new strategies to improve water supply reliability and resolve conflicts over water. Dr. Colby has authored over one hundred journal articles and eight books, including Risk And Resilience: The Economics of Climate, Water, and Energy in the Arid Southwest; Water Markets in Theory and Practice; and Braving the Currents: Resolving Conflicts Over the Water of the American West.

Curriculum Vitae

Awards and Honors

Distinguished Scholar Award, WAEA
Oustanding Research Scientist Award, CALS, University of Arizona
Outstanding Publication Award, National Academy of Sciences
Best Published Research Award, WAEA
Warren Hall Medal for distinguished water research, public service and enduring contribution to knowledge and the public good. Universities Council on Water Resources, 2015

Classes Taught

AREC 479, Economics of Water Management and Policy
AREC 575, Economic Evaluation of Water and Environmental Policy

Selected Publications

B Colby, G Frisvold and M Mealy, “Reallocating Climate Risks Through Water Trading,” Chapter 16 in Handbook of Water Economics, J. Roumasset, editor, 2015.

B Colby, “Innovative Water Transactions to Meet Urban and Environmental Demands in the Face of Climate Change.” Chapter 10 in Innovations in Water Markets, W Easter, editor, 2014.

E Schuster and B Colby, “Farm And Ecological Resilience To Water Supply Variability,” Journal of Contemporary Water Research and Education, Issue 151, 2013 pages 70–83.

B Chandrasekharan and B Colby, “Electricity Load Forecasting Improvements as a Climate Change Adaptation,” Journal of Natural Resources Policy Research, 2013.

Colby, B and G Frisvold, Risk and Resilience: The Economics Of Climate-Water-Energy Challenges In The Arid Southwest, Resources for the Future Press, 2011.

Bark R, Colby B and Dominguez F. “Snow Days? Snowmaking adaptation and the future of low latitude, high elevation skiing in Arizona, USA.” Climatic Change, 2009.

Basta, E and B Colby, “Water Market Trends: Transactions, Quantities, and Prices,” The Appraisal Journal, Winter 2010, volume 78, number 1, p 50–66.

Colby, B and J Pullen, “Influence of Climate Variability on the Market Price of Water in the Gila-San Francisco Basin.” Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, December, 2008.

Ganderton, P., D. Brookshire, B Colby and M Ewers, “Market Prices for Water in the Semi-Arid West,” Water Resources Research, 2004.

Colby, B.G., J. Thorson, and S. Britton, Negotiating Tribal Water Rights: Fulfilling Promises in the Arid West. University of Arizona Press, 2005.

T.P. D'Estree and B.G. Colby, Braving the Curents: Resolving Conflicts Over the Water of the American West, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2003.

Colby, Bonnie G. “Cap-and-Trade Policy Challenges! A Tale of Three Markets.” Land Economics, 76(4):638–658, 2000.