Friday, August 19, 2016

Our 5th year of Science on Tap continues!


 A time to eat, drink & talk about science!

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on Central is our new home 

Join us Thursday, September 1st at 5:30!


People, Behavior, Incentives and Water

Dr Janie Chermak

University of New Mexico

Department of Economics

Water is a unique.  In semi-arid climates, there is rarely enough, there can be severe shortages during times of drought and yet it is not uncommon to see expansive lawns, sprinklers on, or unlimited growth.  A better understanding of people’s perceptions about water and water availability, the incentives that drive their choices, and the dynamic interactions these factors have on water resources can inform policy and the use of a scarce resource.  This research focuses on the intersection of economics, human behavior and water resources.  The talk will focus on the development and results of a series of water and human response experiments and the incorporation of these results into dynamic water resource models.

Janie Chermak is a professor in the Department of Economics and former chair of the department. She is an applied micro economist who specializes in natural resource economics research.  She earned a MSc. and a PhD in Mineral Economics from the Colorado School of Mines and a BA in geology from Western State College.  Prior to earning her graduate degrees she was a practicing geologist focusing on uranium exploration and natural gas exploration and development.  Before joining the faculty at the University of New Mexico in 1995, she was a member of the faculty at the Naval Postgraduate School.  Since joining UNM her research has focused on various aspects of resource economics ranging from consumer issues in water, to common pool problems in invasive species, to efficient production of fossil fuels and the tradeoffs between energy/water futures.  Her work is interdisciplinary in nature and often incorporates aspects of the physical sciences within a dynamic optimization framework.  This results in work that advances the discipline, provides learning tools for students, and provides improved information for policymakers


  1. The claims of Albuquerque aquifer scarcity, which are intrinsic to this lecture, are very much debatable.
    Yet a planned counter lecture at a separate UNM venue was canceled.
    I hope that the cancellation is transformed to a postponement, or the end result will be raw scientific censorship.

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