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Pierre Mérel

University of California, Davis
Climate change and agriculture: Advancing the econometrics approach to impact and adaptation assessments
01 January 2021 -
30 June 2021
Economics and finance

Pierre Mérel has been a faculty at the University of California, Davis (UC Davis), in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics since 2007, with a brief interruption in 2013-2014 when he took a professorship in Agricultural Economics at ETH Zurich, Switzerland. Pierre Mérel’s recent research focuses on climate change and agriculture and food policy. He has conducted research on industrial organization in the agri-food sector, nitrogen pollution from agriculture, vehicle tailpipe emissions, and agri-environmental policy modeling. Pierre Mérel studied Engineering at Ecole Polytechnique in Palaiseau and at Ecole Nationale du Génie Rural, des Eaux et des Forêts in Paris. He holds a Ph.D. in Agricultural and Resource Economics from UC Davis.

Research Interests

Climate change economics, Industrial organization, Agricultural and environmental policy.

Climate change and agriculture: Advancing the econometrics approach to impact and adaptation assessments

Agriculture is one of the economic sectors most vulnerable to climate change because weather is a significant input into agricultural production systems. Alongside experimental evidence and simulations from biophysical process-based models, which have traditionally been favored in the natural sciences, a growing econometrics literature has documented negative effects of global warming on agricultural outcomes, including crop yields, in temperate regions. The econometric approach uses extensive observational data to estimate the relationship between climate (or weather) and outcomes, and projects this relationship into counterfactual climate scenarios to deliver climate impacts. As such, predictions capture actual outcomes as influenced by human behavior, as opposed to purely experimental conditions, or normative assumptions.  These predictions could, at least in theory, provide a more comprehensive and relevant understanding of the effects of climate change on coupled natural-human systems. This project seeks to (i) extend the methodological foundations of the econometric approach to climate change impact assessment, with particular attention to modeling climatic adaptation by economic agents, and (ii) implement this approach on new data sets, including ones relevant for French and European agriculture for which empirical estimates are still lacking.

Contemporary period (1789-…)
World or no region