Prof. Segerson wins Publication of Enduring Quality Award

At the recent Allied Social Science Associations (ASSA) meeting in Atlanta, GA, Professor Kathy Segerson was awarded the 2009 Publication of Enduring Quality Award by the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists (AERE). This award, instituted in 1989, is given annually to the author(s) of a publication that is deemed to have had a lasting and significant impact on the field of environmental and natural resource economics. Professor Segerson received the award for her paper entitled “Uncertainty and Incentives for Nonpoint Pollution Control,” which was published in the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management in 1988. During the award ceremony, the presenter of the award noted that “Dr. Segerson’s paper was the first to incorporate the fundamental characteristics of nonpoint source pollution into a formal theoretical model to study efficient tax schemes.” This paper proposed an innovative policy approach to controlling agricultural production based on observations of ambient water quality, which some have termed the “Segerson mechanism”. In recent years, it is spawned a number of studies that have examined the incentives created by this mechanism and related ambient-based policies using economic laboratory experiments.

CLAS faculty snapshot features Prof. Segerson

Kathleen Segerson (IDEAS), has worked as an environmental economist for 25 years. She is an elected fellow of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists and is known for developing the Segerson mechanism, a policy for rewarding or penalizing farmers as a group for their agricultural pollution runoff. She is a science advisory board member for the Environmental Protection Agency and vice chairs a committee on how to value the impact of EPA rules on ecosystems.

Listen to the podcast of this snapshot.

Former MA and PhD Students: Hold These Dates

In late March 2008, the Department hosted a Graduate Reunion and Forum at the Bishop Center. At the one-day reunion, some of our former PhD students presented their recent research, while others employed in the private sector or by government described their work in professional experience panels. That evening, we also held the Department’s annual awards banquet. We are planning to host a similar event on Friday, April 2, 2010.

Also, the day before the reunion (April 1), we will be holding the “Philip E. Austin Forum on Economics and Public Policy.” Professor Segerson is organizing this event, and funding it using part of the endowment funds for the Austin Chair. The speaker for the forum will be Harvard University environmental economist Robert Stavins. He will speak on climate change in a Post-Kyoto era. President Emeritus Austin, Provost Nicholls, and Dean Teitelbaum are all planning to attend this event.

We will have more details about both events, but for now we hope you will keep the two dates open and plan to attend. See you in April!

Prof. Miceli publishes second edition of textbook

Professor Thomas Miceli has recently published the second edition of his popular law and economics textbook, The Economic Approach to Law (2009, Stanford University Press). He has also just completed the manuscript for a book on eminent domain, tentatively titled “Private Property, Public Use: The Economic Theory of Eminent Domain.” Professor Miceli is a nationally recognized authority on eminent domain, and this book is the culmination of nearly twenty years of his research on this controversial topic. He has previously collaborated with Professor Kathleen Segerson to publish two books and numerous articles on eminent domain and the closely related issue of regulatory takings.

Prof. Segerson president of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists

Prof. Kathleen Segerson (IDEAS), the Philip E. Austin Chair of Economics, was recently elected to a 2-year term as President of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists (AERE). AERE is an international professional association for economists working on the environment and natural resources. It was founded as a means for exchanging ideas, stimulating research, and promoting graduate training in environmental and resource economics. AERE currently has over 800 members from more than thirty nations, coming from academic institutions, the public sector, and private industry. It has two journals, the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management (JEEM) and the Review of Environmental Economics and Policy (REEP). It sponsors sessions at several meetings, including those held by the Allied Social Science Associations, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, Southern Economic Association, and Western Economics Association International. Segerson has previously served as Vice-President and a member of the Board of Directors of AERE.

Prof. Segerson nominated to National Research Council Board

Professor Kathleen Segerson (IDEAS) has been invited to serve a 3-year term on the National Research Council’s (NRC) Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources. The National Research Council is the research arm of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). Its mission is to improve government decision making and public policy, increase public education and understanding, and promote the acquisition and dissemination of knowledge in matters involving science, engineering, technology, and health. The NRC commissions and publishes major reports on topics of broad interest, which are written by panels of experts in related fields. The BANR is the major program unit of the NRC responsible for organizing and overseeing studies on issues of agricultural production and related matters of natural resource development, including forestry, fisheries, wildlife, and land and water use. The Board is responsible for planning new studies, conducting oversight on projects carried out by its subsidiary committees, and making an annual appraisal of accomplishment and potential new initiatives.

Prof. Segerson was also recently inducted as the Philip E. Austin Chair of Economics. For pictures of the ceremony, see here

MA, PhD alumna featured in UConn Alumni magazine

Excerpts from a feature in the latest UConn Magazine:

In the more than a dozen years since she returned to Taiwan from Storrs, Lih-Chyi Wen ’93 M.A., ’96 Ph.D. has established a career as an environmental economist who continues to break new ground in one of the world’s emerging regions.

Wen, deputy director and research fellow in the International Division of the Energy and Environmental Research Center at the Taiwan World Trade Organization, is playing a crucial role in proposing new economic and environmental policies to aid her country.

Lih-Chyi has combined her economics training and her passion for environmental issues and used them to understand and improve environmental management in her home country of Taiwan, which faces numerous environmental challenges as its economy grows,” says Kathleen Segerson, Philip E. Austin Professor of Economics, who served as Wen’s advisor at UConn.

The respect is mutual. Wen says the key to her success at Storrs was the support she received from the faculty, particularly Segerson.

“She not only has a brilliant, analytical mind and great originality, which is evidenced throughout her teaching and research work, but she also takes care of graduate students as if they were her own kids,” Wen says.

The author of two books and dozens of commissioned articles on environmental policy as well as economic policy, Wen was named one of 2008’s Rising Stars in Taipei by the Central News Agency, selected by a 10-member panel of university presidents.

Read more here.

Economist Named to Austin Chair

Another story about Segerson’s Austin Chair, this time from the UConn Foundation:

When Philip E. Austin announced his retirement from the University presidency in 2007, longtime donors quickly came together to create a lasting tribute and preserve his legacy of service. In keeping with Austin’s dedication to education and research, a $1.5-million endowed chair was created in his name to memorialize his tenure and support the work of a nationally renowned scholar. The University of Connecticut’s Board of Trustees recently awarded the chair to Kathleen Segerson (IDEAS), a highly regarded professor of economics with 22 years at UConn.

Specializing in law and the environment, Segerson is at the cutting edge of scholarly inquiry and research into some of the most pressing questions of the twenty-first century. She is an expert in three areas critical to the future: natural resource and environmental economics; law and economics; and applied microeconomics. Support through the Philip E. Austin Endowed Chair will enable her to delve deeper into these focus areas.

“This position will allow me to enhance my own research on the links between economics and the environment and the design of public policies to address environmental problems. It will increase my ability to participate in interdisciplinary collaborations and exchanges, which are essential in my research,” says Segerson.

She also notes that the endowment will have effects beyond her own research.

“The position brings recognition not only to the University but to the economics department as well,” she explains. “I hope the chair can be used to advance the contributions of the department, through, for example, fostering exchanges related to a variety of public policy issues, such as education, health care and housing.”

Segerson joined UConn as a visiting assistant professor in 1986. She holds a joint appointment in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, where she headed the Department of Economics from 2001 to 2005, and the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

In 2007, she was appointed to the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences. Last year, she was selected to be a fellow of both the American Agricultural Economics Association and the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists.

As a nationally recognized expert, Segerson’s counsel has been requested on a number of government and professional committees, including an expert panel on climate change economics for the U.S. General Accounting Office, the Science Advisory Board of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences.

Her teaching and accomplishments have earned her recognition from students and colleagues alike. Segerson has received the Most Appreciated Faculty Award from the Association of Graduate Economics Students three times. She also has received the Research Excellence Award from the UConn chapter of the American Association of University Professors and the Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching from the UConn Alumni Association.

Segerson earned a B.A. in mathematics from Dartmouth College and a Ph.D. in environmental natural resource economics from Cornell University.

As UConn’s thirteenth president, Austin led the University through a period of remarkable transition from 1996 to 2007. He oversaw UConn’s dramatic physical transformation and steep rise in national prominence for academic excellence. Austin’s tenure also was marked by a fivefold growth of the endowment.

“It is a real honor to be appointed to a chair that was endowed in recognition of President Austin’s many contributions to the University of Connecticut. Under his leadership, the University made great strides forward, and I am very pleased to be a part of honoring his legacy,” says Segerson.

UConn Board of Trustees names Segerson to chair

From CLAS in the news;

Kathleen Segerson (IDEAS), a professor of economics in CLAS, has been named by the Board of Trustees to fill the Philip E. Austin Chair for a three-year term.

The chair was established with contributions made in honor of Austin, who stepped down last year after 11 years as president of the University.

Segerson, who specializes in environmental and natural resources economics, law, and applied microeconomics, joined the University in 1986 and served as chair of the economics department from 2001 to 2005.

“Dr. Segerson is extremely qualified to serve in this position and brings to it an outstanding reputation as a researcher and teacher,” says Provost Peter J. Nicholls. “We are pleased to have someone in the chair who is regarded as a national expert in her field and who has dedicated her life not only to teaching and research but also to public service.”

A fellow of the American Agricultural Economics Association and the Association of Environmental and Resources Economists, Segerson was nominated for the position by former CLAS Dean Ross MacKinnon, who recently retired.

Segerson was awarded both the American Association of University Professors UConn Chapter Research Excellence Award and the UConn Alumni Association Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching last year.

“It is a great honor to be chosen to fill the Austin chair in its first three years,” says Segerson. “President Austin was very dedicated not only to the University of Connecticut as an institution, but also more generally to research and teaching related to public policy and the use of economics to understand and solve social problems. It is my hope that I’ll be able to contribute to his legacy through my work in environmental economics and the support made possible through this chair.”

Segerson serves on the Science Advisory Board of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and was recently a member of the U.S. General Accounting Office’s expert panel on climate change economics. She is the president-elect of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists.

Segerson holds a PhD from Cornell University and a BA from Dartmouth College. — Karen A. Grava, CLAS ’73