María Alejandra Vélez
PhD Candidate
Department of Resource Economics
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

My research focuses in the design of institutions to promote cooperation over the use of local shared resources in the developing world. I conducted economic experiments and participatory workshops in rural Colombia with direct users of natural resources, to analyze the effect of different institutions on individual behavior. I have also been working with Professors John Stranlund and James Murphy, in the design and conduction of laboratory experiments to test compliance behavior and enforcement strategies for environmental policies.

I am interested in local natural resources management and rural development in Latin America.

More about the field experiments in Colombia

Working Papers:

Centralized and Decentralized Management of Local Common Pool Resources in the Developing World: Experimental Evidence from Fishing Communities in Colombia

What Motivates Common Pool Resource Users? Experimental Evidence from the Field

Within and Between Group Variation of Individual Strategies in Common Pool Resources: Evidence from Field Experiments

Contact me at


photo of Veronica and Maria Alehandra My friend Veronica and I in Palomino, La Guajira, Colombia, July 2004.

photo of Maria Alehandra Reading Experiment's Instructions In Guarinocito, Caldas Colombia.

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© 2005 Department of Resource Economics, College of Natural Resources and the Environment
University of Massachusetts Amherst.