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Fields of Concentration

The EEFE graduate programs provide students with the tools, skills, and experience necessary to conduct research with the highest ethical standards, scientific integrity, and interpersonal collegiality, and to effectively interpret and communicate the results of their research in the program’s three core fields of concentration.

Energy Economics, Policy and Systems

Students will gain demonstrable expertise in the structure, function and performance of markets for crude oil, natural gas, electric power and transportation/industrial fuels. They will also demonstrate the ability to define and implement novel research questions based on a fundamental understanding of the energy industries. Examples of specific areas of expertise include:

  • Price formation and competition in crude oil, natural gas and electric power markets;
  • Fundamentals of competition analysis in these markets;
  • Modeling the interactions between technologies, energy conversion and delivery systems, and market processes;
  • Assessing the impacts on firms and consumers from attempts to regulate energy markets, prices or other aspects of energy commodities;
  • Understanding the major determinants and pace of innovation in energy technologies.

Environment and Resource Economics

Students will learn theory and empirical methods used for applied economics research on causes of market failures applicable to environmental goods and natural resources, explain and predict the behavior of individual economic agents and collections of agents affecting environmental and natural resource outcomes under alternative property rights regimes and resource allocation mechanisms, measure the benefits and costs of environmental and resource policies, and develop innovative mechanisms for addressing environmental and natural problems. Examples of specific areas of expertise include:

  • Developing structural models of land markets to analyze land use and transportation policies, and estimate associated benefits and costs;
  • Developing and implementing surveys to test hypotheses regarding public preferences for environmental goods;
  • Developing and implementing laboratory and field experiments to test hypotheses regarding economic behaviors under alternative natural resource allocation mechanism; 
  • Developing and applying integrated assessment models for analysis of climate change policies and impacts; and
  • Developing coupled models of economic activity and water quality for analyzing benefits and costs of water pollution policy innovations.

Food Industrial Organization

Students will learn theory and empirical methods to investigate and research the structure and performance for food and agricultural markets.  Students will gain expertise in both consumer and firm behavior, which includes strategic considerations of all major players in the market. Examples of specific topics include:

  • Developing structural models of firm and consumer behavior in the market;
  • Testing theoretical results with micro-level data and current marketing/industrial organization (IO) models;
  • Investigating reduced-form models of market outcomes after identifying exogenous shifts in underlying market forces or policies;
  • Exploring the evolution of theoretical models of consumer demand ; and
  • Exploring linkages, via structural or reduced-form models between food behavior and health.