Agricultural & Agribusiness Economics Research

Agricultural and agribusiness economics is a branch of economics that is concerned with the efficiency and equity implications of allocative issues affecting the agricultural sector of the economy. Research in agricultural economics focuses on the allocation of scarce resources on an individual farm or ranch or in large agribusiness firms where management issues of strategies (e.g. new enterprise development), investments (e.g. water conserving technology), technology adoption (e.g. new seed varieties), and risk management (e.g. hedging) are explored.

The agricultural economics discipline has evolved to encompass issues beyond individual farm-level agricultural production and decision-making. Research in agricultural economics now involves issues related to natural resources, the environment, and rural and international economic development. Applied research conducted by faculty in the AREC department has addressed how economic (dis)incentives could have unintended and perverse environmental consequences, how technology (including the adoption of genetically modified, herbicide resistant crops) has changed agricultural production and the implications for the environment and the local economy, and how agricultural, environmental, and economic development policies affect decision making at the farm, community, and society levels.