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Spotlights: 2011

Photo of David Nussbaum, Chris Burns and Nathalie Lavoie

December 5, 2011

Christopher Burns Named Carolyn Harper Fellow for 2011-2012

Chris joined the Ph.D. program in 2009 after obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Health and Physical Education from the College of New Jersey in 2005. While this is not a typical background, Chris has a passion for environmental and resource economics, and more specifically how distorted markets have led to unsustainable growth in many areas of our economy. He developed this passion by reading countless books and New York Times opinion pieces, by working as a Field Organizer for U.S. PIRG where he helped promote renewable energy as practical means of electrifying the grid, and eventually by taking courses in preparation for a graduate degree in economics. For his Ph.D. dissertation, Chris is interested in the management of fisheries. He is examining whether the purported benefits of individual tradable quotas such as reduced excess capacity, maximization of revenues for participants, and reduced overharvesting, still hold under conditions of stock uncertainty and imperfect enforcement. He will analyze the effect of those real world complexities in a laboratory setting. Chris is one the finest citizens of the department, being always willing to help faculty members in any way he can.

The Carolyn Harper Memorial Fellowship >>More

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Photo of Scott Magnoni, Bernie Morzuch and Jon Farland

December 5, 2011

Scott Magnoni and Jonathan Farland Receive the Vijay Bhagavan Teaching Assistant of Distinction Award

The Vijay Bhagavan Teaching Assistant of Distinction Award >>More

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Photo of Sirisha Naidu

October, 2011

Dr. Sirisha Naidu (PhD 2007) presented her research on rights to forest use in India

Dr. Sirisha Naidu (PhD in Resource Economics 2007) was on campus in late October to present a seminar in the Economic Development Series in the Department of Economics on her research on the effects of new forest rights laws in India on the well-being of forest dwellers. Sirisha’s research focuses on the interaction of individual and community rights and responsibilities for forest use and management under Indian laws.

Photo of Mark Tajima and his Crew

October, 2011

Mark Tajima (front, center) talked with the Resource Economics Society (undergraduate club) about his work in establishing Holyoke-based Energia—focused on energy efficiency audits and retrofits—and job training.

Mark Tajima came to campus on the evening of October 18, 2011 to talk with ResEc majors about his work focusing on energy efficiency and job training for young adults. He is a founder along with colleagues of Energia, a Holyoke-based company that provides energy audit, insulation, and solar energy services using crews trained by the company to work in this sector. Mark is also involved in several other cooperative-based efforts focused on energy efficiency and building the local economy. His work offered the students excellent insights into the challenges and rewards of social entrepreneurship.

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Photo of Dan Arthurton

September, 2011

Alum Dan Arthurton (BS 1989, MS 1991) visited on Sept 19, 2011 to talk about economic development with undergraduate and graduate classes.

Dan Arthurton (BS 1989, MS 1991) visited campus on September 19, 2011 to talk about his work on economic development in the Eastern Caribbean and around the world. He is currently Adviser in the Governor’s Immediate Office at the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank and has worked at the UN FAO, CARICOM, CIDA, USAID, and OECS. Dan also farms six acres with hydroponics, open field vegetable faming, and orchard. He spoke with Julie Caswell’s Hunger in a Global Economy class and with first year graduate students about the groundwork and public policies necessary for economic development and food security.

Photo of Stockbridge Hall

September, 2011

Resource Economics is searching for a new Assistant Professor in Environmental and Natural Resource Economics >>More

Photo of Emily Wang

August, 2011

Resource Economics is very happy to welcome Dr. Emily Wang as Assistant Professor. >>More

Photo of Christoph Bauner

August, 2011

Resource Economics is very happy to welcome Dr. Christoph Bauner as Post-Doctoral Researcher. >>More

Photo of Glenn Caffery

August, 2011

Glenn Caffery on last leg of 3300 mile cross country run for Alzheimer’s
(Photo courtesy of Ryan Hogan, Penn State)

Less than 500 miles stand between Glenn Caffery and his goal of running solo across the United States to raise awareness of and funds for Alzheimer’s research. Starting in Seaside, Oregon on May 19th, Glenn will complete his run in approximately two weeks in Westerly, Rhode Island. Carrying all of his supplies in a jogging stroller, through injuries, dust storms, mosquitos, extreme heat, exhaustion and personal loss, Glenn has remained focused on spreading awareness about the horrible disease that took his father’s life in 2002. He has shared his journey with many incredible people along the way that have shown kindness in uncountable ways. You too can welcome Glenn home and show your support for Alzheimer’s Research.

Glenn Caffery finishes his Coast-to Coast Cure Alzheimers run of 3312 milesUPDATE: On the evening of August 17th, Glenn finished his Coast-to Coast Cure Alzheimers Run of 3312 miles. Congratulations Glenn!

Photo of Julie Caswell

July, 2011

Julie Caswell has been named a Fellow of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in recognition of her outstanding contributions to the field. >>More

Photo of Richard T. Rogers

May, 2011

Professor Richard T. Rogers Retires 

Dr. Richard T. Rogers recently retired from the Department of Resource Economics after 27 years of service. Richard's research focused on the structure and performance of the U.S. food manufacturing industry and of agricultural cooperatives. With coauthors, he received the Quality of Communication Research Award from the American Agricultural Economics Association in 1985. He was a Lilly Endowment Teaching Fellow in 1989-1990, and was recognized with the University Distinguished Teaching Award in 1994-95. Richard is known to thousands of UMass students by his motto "Stats is Fun" and his dedication to active learning in large lectures. He brought his interest in learning and teaching innovation to the entire UMass campus as Faculty Advisor to the Provost for Undergraduate Education from 2003-2008 and Associate Provost for Academic Technology from 2009-1010, taking a leading role in the establishment of the Learning Commons and the Teaching Commons in the W.E.B. DuBois Library. Richard is the recipient of numerous national teaching awards and, as his graduate Teaching Assistants said on his retirement t-shirt, after 27 years he is "95% confident that Stats is Fun"!

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Photo of Glenn Caffery

May, 2011

Lecturer Glenn Caffery has just begun a 3,300 mile run across the U.S. on behalf of Alzheimer's research. Glenn, who set out from Seaside, Oregon, hopes to raise $25,000 from friends and other sponsors. He plans to run 50 miles each day and complete the trek in Westerly, Rhode Island in August. Learn more about Glenn's run at these links:

Photo of John Spraggon and Jen Flanzbaum

April 27, 2011

Jen Flanzbaum honored for Outstanding Leadership and Service

The Department of Resource Economics recognizes Jen Flanzbaum (BS 2011) with the Outstanding Leadership and Service Award for 2011. Jen served as President of R.E.S. (The Resource Economics Society) in 2009-10 and 2010-11 bringing great energy and commitment to building the student club. Congratulations Jen!

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Photo of Alums Jeff Lockhart, Steve Guth, and Tessa Misiaszek

April 5, 2011

Alumni Night--The Class of 1997 Returns! Jeff Lockhart, Steve Guth, and Tessa Misiaszek talk with students about their careers and lives after ResEc. 

R.E.S. (The Resource Economics Society) hosted an alumni night on April 5, 2011 bringing back three graduates of the Resource Economics Class of 1997. Jeff Lockhart, Steve Guth, and Tessa Misiaszek shared their career experiences, observations about work/life balance, and a couple stories of their days together as undergrads. They said that their ResEc training gave them problem solving tools that go anywhere, mixing economic theory, abstract thinking, critical thinking, data analysis, and applications. It's always all about allocation of resources! In career development, they emphasized building transferable skills and always over delivering. Jeff, Steve, and Tessa followed their own advice and delivered a great Alumni Night conversation with ResEc students.

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Photo of Amherst Survival Center

March 21, 2011

Campus Kitchens Project launched by students in ResEc class "Hunger in a Global Economy"

>>The Massachusetts Daily Collegian news article

Photo of Joseph Martens

January 6, 2011

ResEc Alum Joseph Martens named to top NY environmental post

Alum Joseph Martens has been nominated by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to be the new commissioner of New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation. >>More

Photo of Bob Grow

January, 2011

Alum Bob Grow (BS,’70, UMass Amherst, MURP ’73), heads up advocacy of green as a competitive advantage for the Greater Washington Board of Trade

Since receiving a masters in Urban and regional Planning my first job was with the Southeastern Virginia Planning District Commission in Norfolk, Virginia writing economic reports, comprehensive plans, coastal zone management and water quality reports. Moving to Washington, DC in 1980 with the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) I conducted economic impact and demographic analysis for the Washington region.

Employed by the Washington/Baltimore Regional Association in 1985 to research and promote Washington/Baltimore as a combined region for statistical visibility and CMSA designation. On to the Greater Washington Board of Trade in 1992 where I am presently heading up transportation advocacy and green as a competitive advantage.

In regard to transportation, I appeared on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart in June, 1999 (Google “Daily Show Bethesda Triangle”). For our green efforts, in 2007 I was fortunate to receive an ACCE Ford Foundation Fellowship in Regionalism and Sustainable Development writing a white paper on “Energy Efficient Streetlights -- Potentials for Reducing Greater Washington’s Carbon Footprint” (March 2008) which received international media coverage. (Google “Bob Grow energy efficient streetlights”). Participated in a mission to Beijing and Shanghai with the American Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE) related to the Ford Fellowship in 2010. And I still think about my great experience at UMass particularly in the Department of Agricultural and Food Economics, now the Resource Economics Department.

Bob is happy to have students contact him via email at