Conference Information

Exploring Rural Land Use

Land is one of the most significant contributors to the success of rural and agricultural economies. Understanding how it is valued, regulated and transferred is critical for effective management of this resource.

If you're a land use planner, policy maker, farmer or farm organization representative, lender, farm financial advisor or rural realtor, you don’t want to miss Exploring Rural Land Use: Issues, institutions and change - a one-day conference that brings together a broad spectrum of stakeholders to discuss crucial issues about rural land use. In addition to a unique networking opportunity, the conference will provide:

  • An examination of key trends and issues regarding farmland in Ontario
  • A discussion about the institutions and organizations that influence the use of land
  • A forum to learn more about First Nations land use issues
  • A closer look at ongoing property rights in Canada and the United States

The event features keynote speaker Chief Robert Louie of the Westbank First Nation and Chairman of the First Nations Land Advisory Board. His presentation will focus on the First Nation Land Management - a framework agreement that enables First Nations to opt out of the land-related sections of the Indian Act and develop their own land code.

In addition to Chief Louie's presentation, other topics and speakers at the Exploring Rural Land Use conference include:

  • Trends in agricultural land use over time in Ontario & Canada – Alfons Weersink, Professor, Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics (FARE), University of Guelph
  • Trends in farmland values – James Bryan, Strategy and Agricultural Economics Analyst, Farm Credit Canada, Regina, Saskatchewan
  • Land value trends in Southwestern Ontario – Marleen Van Ham, Real Estate Appraiser, Agri Choice Real Estate Appraisals Inc.
  • Severance: what they are, how they work, why they matter - Wayne Caldwell, Director of the School of Environmental Design and Rural Development and Professor in Rural Planning, University of Guelph
  • Planning policies in action: experience with surplus farm dwelling severances – Sarah Wilhelm, Planner, Planning and Development Department, County of Wellington
  • The impact of wind turbines on property values in Ontario: public perception and empirical evidence - Richard Vyn, Assistant Professor, Department of FARE, University of Guelph
  • Assessment and taxes: two different things that work together - Jason Moore, Valuation Manager, Assessment Standards and Mass Appraisal Branch, Municipal Property Assessment Corporation
  • First Nation land use planning in Ontario and Canada: new perspectives - Daniel Millette, Manager, Strategic Planning, First Nations Lands Management Resource Centre
  • History of property rights movement in Ontario - Glenn Fox, Professor, Department of FARE, University of Guelph & Elizabeth Brubaker, Executive Director, Environment Probe
  • Property rights and responsibilities - Elizabeth Marshall, President of All Rights Research Ltd., and Director of Research for the Ontario Landowners Association
  • Is there a durable concept of property rights? - John Hoehn, Professor in the Department of Environmental and Natural Resource Economics, Michigan State University

The conference is organized and moderated by Brady Deaton, Jr., Associate Professor, Department of FARE, University of Guelph with the support of Alan Ker, Department Chair.

Exploring Rural Land Use is presented by the Institute for the Advanced Study of Food and Agricultural Policy, based in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of Guelph. This conference is one of the key outreach activities of the Institute whose mission it is to provide independent credible, and timely policy analysis with respect to food and agricultural issues.