Ker Named Research Chair in Agricultural Risk and Policy

Posted on Friday, November 9th, 2018

The Ontario Agricultural College (OAC) is pleased to announce the appointment of Prof. Alan Ker as the OAC Research Chair in Agricultural Risk and Policy. This new research leadership role is based out of the Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics (FARE) and is focused on mitigating risk related to production agriculture through policy making.

“We at FARE are excited for Alan to receive this recognition for his research excellence and leadership,” says Andreas Boecker, interim chair of the Department. “This position will allow Alan to grow his research program that is highly relevant to industry and policy. This will enhance our graduate student research experience and further strengthen the relationships with our partners in government and industry.”

Ker has been a professor at the University of Guelph since 2009. He was the chair of the Department of Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics from 2009-2014. Since then he has led the Institute for the Advanced Study of Food and Agricultural Policy as the institute director.

“I am quite honoured to hold the OAC Research Chair in Agricultural Risk and Policy,” says Ker. “It will enable us to undertake the research necessary to determine how to best assist the agricultural and food sectors in managing and mitigating risk to remain sustainable and competitive.” 

Ker’s research focuses on identifying agricultural risk from changing climate, changing technology, changing trade environments and fluctuating policy environments, as well as the policies that could be used to reduce these risks.

This work will support the Ontario Agri-Food Alliance (previously the OMAFRA-U of G Partnership) , while providing guidance to industry and government on design of policy that will result in sustainable agriculture.

“Alan has shown exceptionally strong leadership in this area,” said Rene Van Acker, OAC dean. “We want to recognize and elevate that leadership for the benefit of our students and our partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.”

Prior to joining U of G, Ker was a professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of Arizona.  He and his students have won numerous national and international awards for their quality of research. 

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