AARES Webcasts

 

AARES Webinar Program

AARES has run an occasional webinar program since 2012. The following are selected examples.  Each webinar description below has a "Webinar flyer" icon, which if opened, provides an abstract and speaker biography.  After you've reviewed this information for the webinars, click on your selection, either on the Webinar title or on the "Watch Recording" link below, to register and watch. Each Webinar is hosted by Rod McInnes, Webinar Co-ordinator and former Manager Promotion and Development, AARES Federal Council (2012-2019) and presented with slides by a guest speaker.


Estimating the Effects of Weather and Climate Change on Agricultural Productivity

Presented by: University of Queensland
Hosted by: AARES Federal Council
Date: Wednesday 18 November 2020
Time: 12:00pm AEST, 3:00pm NZDT, 1:00pm AEDT, 12:30pm ACDT, 10:00am AWST
Venue: Online only from University of Queensland, Brisbane

Our Topic: Measures of productivity are measures of output quantity divided by measures of input quantity. Explaining changes in productivity involves explaining how output and input quantities are determined. Economists have many behavioural models that can be used for this purpose. This paper considers a model that accounts for weather uncertainty (i.e., uncertainty about day-to-day atmospheric conditions), climate uncertainty (i.e., uncertainty about average atmospheric conditions over a long period of time) and output price uncertainty. The estimated parameters of the model are used to decompose a proper productivity index (i.e., one that satisfies basic axioms from index theory) into four components: technical progress (i.e., a measure of how quickly new technologies are discovered), environmental change (i.e., changes in variables that are outside the control of managers), technical efficiency change (i.e., changes in how well existing technologies are chosen and used), and scale and mix efficiency change (i.e., changes in economies of scale and substitution). The measure of scale and mix efficiency change is further decomposed into a measure of technical change, a measure of input price change, and various measures of changes in expectations. The methodology is applied to US agricultural data. The effects of changes in weather and climate on agricultural productivity are found to be small relative to the effects of changes in input prices.

Webinar link: Register here for the webinar or, after the event, to watch the recorded webinar  

Slides: Webinar Slides as PDF
Webinar flyer : Flyer Climate Change and Agricultural Productivity

Speakers: Chris O’Donnell is a Professor of Econometrics at the University of Queensland. He is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Productivity Analysis, an Associate Editor of Empirical Economics, and a Distinguished Fellow of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society. His research is focused on economic and statistical methods for measuring and explaining productivity and efficiency change. He has authored or co-authored three books on this topic. His research works have been cited more than 17,000 times.

Njuki, Eric, Bravo-Ureta, Boris E, and O'Donnell, Christopher J (2018). A new look at the decomposition of agricultural productivity growth incorporating weather effects. PloS One 13 (2) e0192432 1-21.

O'Donnell, Christopher J (2020). Working Paper in preparation


The effect of carbon pricing on emissions: evidence from an international study

Presented by: The Australian National University & Macquarie University
Hosted by: AARES Federal Council
Date: Wednesday 7 October 2020
Time: 4:00pm NZDT, 1:00pm AEDT, 12:30pm ACDT, 10:00am AWST
Venue: Online only from ANU, Canberra & Macquarie University, Sydney

Our Topic: This talk will share findings from recent research on the efficacy of carbon pricing, economists’ principal policy recommendation for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The study examined data for 142 countries over a period of two decades to measure the effect of carbon pricing on emissions trends. The results suggest that the average annual growth rate of carbon dioxide emissions from fuel combustion is indeed significantly lower in countries with a carbon price, after controlling for various other factors. Higher carbon prices are associated with larger emissions reductions, with a key mechanism being faster adoption of zero-carbon energy sources such as solar and wind. Recent adopters of carbon pricing include Singapore and South Africa. The presentation will review opportunities for other countries to adopt carbon pricing.

Webinar link: Register here for the webinar or, after the event, to watch the recorded webinar  

Slides: Webinar Slides as PDF - Best Slides 1-13; Burke Slides 14-20
Webinar flyer : Flyer The effect of carbon pricing on emissions: evidence from an international study

Speakers: Paul Burke is an Associate Professor at the Crawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University. His work focuses on the economics of energy and the environment, with a regional focus on the Asia Pacific.

Rohan Best is a Lecturer at the Department of Economics at Macquarie University. He works on energy, the environment, and economic development. (ACBEE0

Best, R., Burke, PJ. and Jotzo, F. (2020), Carbon pricing efficacy: Cross-country evidence, CCEP Working Paper 2004, May 2020. Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.

Rohan Best Paul J. Burke Energy mix persistence and the effect of carbon pricing AJARE Volume 64, Issue 3 July 2020 Pages 555-574 (See also our AJARE page in the Publications menu above)


Epi-economic Modelling of COVID-19: Policy implications for Australia

Presented by: The Australian National University & Melbourne University
Hosted by: AARES Federal Council
Date: Wednesday 5 August 2020
Time: 4:00pm NZST, 1:00pm AEST, 12:30pm ACST, 11:00am AWST
Venue: Online only from ANU, Canberra & Melbourne University, Melbourne

Our Topic: The presentation highlights recent epidemiological-economic modelling of COVID-19 in Australia undertaken by the presenters with co-authors. The model results provide important policy insights about how to respond to the pandemic in terms of both public health and the economy. While the results are from Australia, based on data until early July 2020, the results are of general interest to any high-income country. Our findings are that a 'go hard, go early' response in terms of both a lock-down and also testing and contact tracing are a preferred strategy that dominate alternatives such as 'controlled adaptation' or the 'Swedish Model'.  

Webinar link: Register here for the webinar or, after the event, to watch the recorded webinar  

Slides: Webinar Slides as PDF
Webinar flyer : Flyer_Epieconomic_Modelling_of_COVID19_Policy_Implications_for_Australia

Speakers: Quentin Grafton FASSA is an Australian Laureate Fellow and Professor of Economics at the Crawford School of Public Policy, the ANU. He is a former editor of the Australian Journal of Agricultural & Resource Economics, former President of AARES and is also an AARES Distinguished Fellow.

Tom Kompas FASSA is a Professor of Economics, the Foundation Director of the Australian Centre for Biosecurity and Environmental Economics (ACBEE0 and one of four Chief Investigators in the Centre of Excellence for Biosecurity Risk Analysis (CEBRA) at the University of Melbourne.He is a former editor of the Australian Journal of Agricultural & Resource Economics and is an AARES Distinguished Fellow.

Kompas T, Grafton RQ, Che TN, Chu L, Camac J.  Health and Economic Costs of Early, Delayed and No Suppression of COVID-19: The Case of Australia. medRxiv preprint June 23, 2020.

Tom Kompas , R. Quentin Grafton, Tuong Nhu Che, Long Chu, James Camac  Health and economic costs of early and delayed suppression and the unmitigated spread of COVID-19: The case of Australia Plos One, Peer reviewed, June 4, 2021

 


CGE modelling of Australia’s triple catastrophe: drought, bushfires and COVID-19

Presented by: Victoria University
Hosted by: AARES Federal Council
Date: Wednesday 22 July 2020
Time: 4:00pm NZST, 1:00pm AEST, 12:30pm ACST, 11:00am AWST
Venue: Online only from Victoria University, Melbourne

 

Our Topic: The hard times started in northern NSW with record heat in the summer of 2016-17. Average winter rains across the state followed. In 2018, most of NSW and southern Queensland had bottom decile rainfall, followed by even worse conditions in 2019. Agricultural regions suffered a combination of failed crops and diminished livestock herds. Record low soil moisture spanned the Great Divide, creating conditions for the megafires which started in September 2019 and continued through to January. Fires destroyed houses, outbuildings, livestock, fences and forests. Sydney had more than 35 days of hazardous air quality. In the wake of all this were fears of PTSD among firefighters, lost jobs in tourism and lost livelihoods elsewhere. 34 people lost their lives directly in the fires, and another 400+ died due to the effects of smoke. In wine regions, smoke taint ruined vintages around the Hunter and Canberra. As the rains returned from a prolonged IOD sabbatical, the need for a response to the pandemic emerged. VU-TERM, a dynamic multi-regional CGE model, is used to simulate the separate effects of drought, bushfires and the pandemic. The modelling challenges are minor compared with the policy challenges. How Keynesian must governments be and for how long? What dangers are there in governments breaking prematurely from collaboration and retreating to their usual ideological turf?  

Webinar link: Register here for the webinar or watch the recorded webinar after the event  

Slides: Webinar Slides as PDF
Webinar flyer : Triple_Catastrophe_flyer

Speakers: Prof. Glyn Wittwer is a regional dynamic CGE modeling expert. He has played a major role with Mark Horridge in developing databases for TERM (The Enormous Regional Model) versions in several countries. He edited the Springer volumes Economic Modeling of Water (2012), Multi-regional Dynamic General Equilibrium Modeling of the U.S. Economy (2017) and Economy-Wide Modeling of Water at Regional and Global Scales (2019). Glyn is a GTAP Research Fellow from 2017 to 2020. He has extensive consulting experience. His list of projects includes dynamic, multi-regional CGE modeling in Australia, China and the United States.


Are conflicts making us hungry? Evidence from farmer-herdsmen conflicts in rural Nigeria.

Presented by: Lincoln University
Hosted by: AARES Federal Council
Date: Wednesday 17 June 2020
Time: 4:00pm NZST, 1:00pm AEST, 12:30pm ACST, 11:00am AWST
Venue: Online only from Lincoln University

Our Topic: In Nigeria, the threat to sustainable food production is worsened by the ongoing farmer-herdsmen conflict in agrarian communities. To evaluate the impact of the conflict on food security and production decisions, we extend the household production model by introducing three variables: risk perception, severity and incidence of conflict. In three essays the following impacts are evaluated: (i) the incidence and severity of conflict on household food security; (ii) risk perception on household production decisions; and (iii) social diversity on risk perception. A multistage sampling technique is used to collect data from 401 rural households in two geopolitical zones in Nigeria. In essay one, we evaluate the influence of the incidence and severity of conflict on household food security by employing a two-staged residual inclusion model and conclude that only severity of conflict reduces household food security. Essay two is in progress and develops a risk perception index to evaluate how farmers’ risk perception influences their use of of fertiliser and pesticide. The results provide policy insights to combat any disruption of agrarian systems and highlight the need for policy interventions for protecting vulnerable groups from hunger and malnutrition in conflict-prone regions across the world. 

Webinar link: Register here for the webinar or watch the recorded webinar after the event  

Slides: Webinar Slides as PDF
Webinar flyer : Flyer_email_version_AARES_Webinar_Are_conflicts_making_us_hungry

 

Speakers: Amaka Nnaji is a Ph.D. student at the Faculty of Agribusiness and Commerce, Lincoln University, New Zealand. She started her Ph.D. in 2018 as a NZAid Scholar under the supervision Dr. Nazmun N. Ratna, Prof. Alan Renwick and Dr. Wanglin Ma. After finishing her Masters in Agricultural Development Economics from the University of Reading, United Kingdom, she worked as lecturer in the Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

Dr Nazmun N. Ratna is a development economist teaching at the Faculty of Agribusiness and Commerce, Lincoln University, since 2007. She has published about development issues related to institutions, food security, social capital, poverty, diversity, and gender-agricultural policy nexus, based on her research in Asia (Bangladesh & Vietnam), North America ( the US & Costa Rica), and Africa ( Nigeria, and Malawi). Currently, she is involved in two externally funded projects on the horticultural value chain and nutrition in Bangladesh and India, and eradication of forced labour and modern slavery for Bangladeshi and Nepalese female migrants in the Middle East.


Online Teaching and Video Production

Presented by: David Pannell is Professor of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Western Australia (UWA) and past president of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society
Hosted by: AARES Federal Council
Date: Wednesday 3 June 2020
Time: 4:00pm NZST, 1:00pm AEST, 12:30pm ACST, 11:00am AWST
Venue: Online only from University of Western Australia

David Pannell teaches in the School of Agriculture at UWA. For his teaching in traditional formats he has received a UWA "Excellence in Teaching" award but in 2014 he led innovation in online teaching by developing a privately funded MOOC (Massive Online Open Course) in “Agriculture, Economics and Nature” that was delivered in 2015. Since that time, over 23,000 people have enrolled in this course, with David receiving strong positive feedback. This inspired him to convert some of his normal undergraduate teaching to an online format, long before COVID-19 hit. From this extensive experience he has key insights to share with us on online teaching and video production to deliver good outcomes for students. 

Webinar link: Watch the recorded webinar  

Slides: Webinar Slides as PDF
Webinar flyer: AARES_Online_Teaching__Video_Production_Flyer.pdf

 

Speaker: Our presenter, David Pannell is Professor of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Western Australia (UWA) and past president of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.


Applying economics to wicked problems: Protecting the Great Barrier Reef

Presented by: Professor John Rolfe, Immediate Past President, AARES, and University of Central Queensland
Hosted by: AARES Federal Council
Date: Wednesday 6 May 2020
Time: 4:00pm NZST, 1:00pm AEST, 12:30pm ACST, 11:00am AWST
Venue: Online only from University of Central Queensland

John Rolfe gave the 2020 AARES Presidential Address on this topic to the AARES Annual Conference in February. He reprises this important talk for us in our webinar. His theme was that simple policies and unrelated single instruments are ineffective when it comes to the Great Barrier Reef (GBR). There needs to be greater recognition that solutions for wicked problems involve packages of approaches over multiple dimensions. It’s time to bring in the economists and social scientists alongside the marine scientists and environmentalists to better target the actions needed to reduce pressures and threats. While current work on costing and valuation are providing better insights into where funds can be allocated, more needs to be done to reveal the tradeoffs and advantages of different choices. Many of the major challenges facing the GBR are economic, including slow adoption rates of better agricultural practices, improving cost-effectiveness, setting targets, selecting policy mechanisms and prioritising where funding and effort should be allocated. It appears that to maintain community trust it is important to show that funds are being used efficiently, are targeted carefully, and maintain the tourism and recreation sectors alongside the environment. To achieve this there needs to be better alignment between science modelling and economic assessment, and greater recognition of the multiple interrelationships and feedback loops typical in wicked problems, as faced by what is arguably Australia’s most iconic asset. 

Webinar link: Watch recorded webinar Due to a recording error, the presentation starts at the second slide.  The title slide and first slide can be viewed in the following Pdf of the full slide set.

Slides: Webinar Slides as PDF
Webinar flyer: Final_Flyer_Applying_economics_to_wicked_problems_Protecting_the_Great_Barrier_Reef.pdf

Speaker: John Rolfe is a resource economist who is Professor of Regional Economic Development in the School of Business and Law at the CQ University at Rockhampton, and a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia. Professor Rolfe has a number of research interests, but specialises in non-market valuation, regional development, environmental, resource and agricultural economic issues, agricultural adoption, and economic impact assessment in regional areas. In 2019 he was appointed by the Queensland and Australian Governments to the Great Barrier Reef Independent Science Panel.

The webinar is an abridged version of John's 2020 AARES Presidential Address to the society's Annual Conference in February this year.


Measuring the Returns to Investment in Research, Development and Extension in the Australian Grains Industry

Presented by: Kuo Li, University of Melbourne
Hosted by: AARES Federal Council with Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) 
Date: Wednesday 4 September 2019
Time: 2:00pm NZST, 12:00pm AEST, 10:00am AWST
Venue: University of Melbourne
Webinar link: Watch recorded webinar Due to a recording error, the presentation starts at the second slide.  The title slide and first slide can be viewed in the following Pdf of the full slide set.

Slides: Webinar Slides as PDF
Webinar flyer:
Webinar flyer

The Australian grains industry is fundamental to the overall agricultural sector, comprising one of Australia’s largest category of food exports. Over recent decades, the grains industry has faced challenges. A slowing in the total factor productivity of the industry has been brought about by factors such as climate change, extreme weather events, declining research, development and extension, and slower adoption of new technologies. This has been coupled with a surge in competition from emerging markets due to price advantages. In order to increase productivity and maintain international competitiveness, greater and better-targeted investments in research, development and extension is required. Equilibrium Displacement Models (EDMs) are useful for estimating the net benefits of agricultural R&D and the distribution of these benefits along the value chain, providing a way of evaluating the merits of different research investments. This research project develops three EDMs, one for each main agroecological region in Australia—Western, Southern and Northern. Combined together, they provide a stylised representation of the Australian grains industry aiming to assist in the investment decision making process by Research Development and Extension (RD&E) funders. 

Speaker: Kuo Li is a final year PhD student at the School of Agriculture and Food, University of Melbourne. His PhD project is sponsored by the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) and supervised by AARES Distinguished Fellows Professors Garry Griffith, Ross Kingwell and Bill Malcolm. He previously worked in urban development economics in the private sector with SGS Economics and Planning. He commenced his professional career as a Victorian Government Graduate Trainee. 

The webinar arises from Ph.D. Research funded by GRDC.  The most relevant publicly available current source material from this research is the following paper on the WA grains industry:

Li, Kuo et al (2019) Measuring the Returns to Investment in RDE in the WA Grains Industry Using Equilibrium Displacement Modelling Australasian Agribusiness Review