Options for Improving Conservation Programs: Insights from Auction Theory and Economic Experiments

Amber Waves, February 2015

53 Pages Posted: 15 Mar 2016

See all articles by Daniel Hellerstein

Daniel Hellerstein

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) - Economic Research Service (ERS), Resource and Rural Economics Division

Nathaniel Alan Higgins

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) - Economic Research Service (ERS)

Michael Roberts

University of Hawaii - Department of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: February 23, 2015

Abstract

USDA spends over $5 billion per year on conservation activities, mostly through voluntary programs that pay farmers and landowners to provide environmental services. USDA can reduce expenditures and encourage landowners to provide greater environmental services by making use of available data. Laboratory experiments suggest that using more sophisticated enrollment mechanisms could reduce the cost of enrollment in a given program by as much as 18 percent.

Keywords: auctions, experiments, enrollment mechanism, conservation reserve program

JEL Classification: D44, C92, Q28

Suggested Citation

Hellerstein, Daniel and Higgins, Nathaniel Alan and Roberts, Michael, Options for Improving Conservation Programs: Insights from Auction Theory and Economic Experiments (February 23, 2015). Amber Waves, February 2015. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2737112

Daniel Hellerstein (Contact Author)

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) - Economic Research Service (ERS), Resource and Rural Economics Division ( email )

355 E Street, SW
Washington, DC 20024-3221
United States
202-694-5613 (Phone)
202-694-5756 (Fax)

Nathaniel Alan Higgins

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) - Economic Research Service (ERS) ( email )

355 E Street, SW
Washington, DC 20024-3221
United States
(202) 694-5602 (Phone)

Michael Roberts

University of Hawaii - Department of Economics ( email )

Honolulu, HI 96822
United States

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