Specialty Areas for Graduate Program

The field of Agricultural Economics is quite broad and covers many areas of specialization. Potential specialty areas are listed below. Within each area, potential career paths, and recommended course work are addressed.

PhD students must select at least one specialty area from the following list. PhD students have the option of declaring a second specialty area, with the advice and oversight of the advisory committee. MS students are not required to declare a specialty area, but may choose to do so in consultation with their advisory committee.

The specialty area is intended to support thesis research and represents concentrated study within the broad area of applied economics. The courses used to satisfy the specialty requirement are subject to the approval of the student's advisory committee and the department's Graduate Committee.

An application with major professor approval describing the desired specialty area must be submitted to the Graduate Committee with the plan of study by the end of the student's third semester.


Note: There are new and updated specializations for students entering the PhD program in August 2020:

New PhD Specialty Areas were approved by the faculty of the Department of Agricultural Economics on January 21st, 2020.  The following four specialty areas will be in effect for PhD students entering in August 2020.

All PhD students currently enrolled in the PhD program (in January 2020) have the option of completing a specialization from the handbook under which their program is governed (the handbook dated the year they began the program) OR of adopting one of the new specializations outlined below. To view the pre-2020 specializations and their requirements, scroll to the next section

PhD Specialty Areas (9 credit hours):

Agribusiness Management and Marketing (select 9 credits) 
    • AGEC 60000  - Agricultural Finance 
    • AGEC 61300 - Introduction to Economics of Risk
    • AGEC 62200 - Food System Organization & Policy
    • AGEC 60500 - Agricultural Price Analysis (3)  <new name Agricultural Mkts and Price Analysis>
    • AGEC 69000F - Applied Contract Theory and Mechanism Design (3)
International Trade and International Development (select 9 credits)
    • AGEC 61800 - Applied General Equilibrium Analysis
    • AGEC 64300 - Theory of Economic Development
    • AGEC 60400/60800 - Welfare Economics (1) and Benefit Cost Analysis (2)
    • AGEC 61900 - Applied Economics
    • AGEC 64400 - International Ag Trade
Applied Economics Quantitative Methods (select 9 credits)
    • AGEC 61900 - Applied Economics
    • AGEC 60500 - Agricultural Price Analysis (3)  <new name Agricultural Mkts and Price Analysis>
    • AGEC 60400/60800 - Welfare Economics (1) and Benefit Cost Analysis (2)
    • AGEC 65500 - Time Series Analysis 
    • AGEC 69000 - Applied Nonparametric Econometrics 
Resources, Environment, and Sustainable Production (select 9 credits)
    • AGEC 61900 - Applied Economics
    • AGEC 60400/60800 - Welfare Economics (1) and Benefit Cost Analysis (2)
    • AGEC 61800 - Applied General Equilibrium Analysis
    • AGEC 61300 - Introduction to Economics of Risk
    • AGEC 52800* - Global Change and the Challenge of Sustainably Feeding a Growing Planet
      • * See Instructor for Additional Project Requirements to use this course in your PhD specialization 

The following specialty areas are only available to students who entered the graduate program prior to August 2020:


Agribusiness Management​

  • MS Program (course options):
    • AGEC 50600 - Marketing and Prices 
    • AGEC 55400 - Appl Simulation in Agribusiness 
    • AGEC 61200 - Agricultural Production Economics I
    • AGEC 59600I - Intl Food and Agribusiness Marketing
    • AGEC 53000 - Strategic Agribusiness Management
    • AGEC 52400 - Agricultural Finance
    • Note: MGMT/OBHR course work must represent less than 50 percent of the credit hours on a plan of study.
  • PhD Program:
    • AGEC 60000 - Agricultural Finance or AGEC 61300 - Introduction to Economics of Risk
    • AGEC 62100 - Advanced Agricultural Marketing or AGEC 62200 - Food System Organization and Policy
    • AGEC 69000 - Applied Contract Theory
    • Plus 3-4 credits from the following areas based on focus:
      • Marketing Series
        • MGMT 62500 - Research Methods in Marketing Management (2)
        • MGMT 62600 - Seminar in Marketing Models (2) (Prerequisites: MGMT 62000 & 67200)
        • MGMT 62800 - Survey of Marketing Theory (3)
      • Strategy Series
        • MGMT 65700 - Manufacturing Strategy (2) (Prerequisites: MGMT 61000, MGMT 65000, MGMT 66000)
        • MGMT 65800 - Corporate Strat Concepts & Models (2)
        • MGMT 65900 - Strategic Management II (2)
        • MGMT 67700 - Seminar in Quantitative Methods in Management Research (2)
      • Finance Series
        • MGMT 61600 - Seminar in Finance Markets I (2)
        • MGMT 61700 - Seminar in Finance Markets II (2)
        • MGMT 61800 - Seminar in Managerial Finance I (2) ​
Agricultural Finance
  • MS Program (course options):
    • AGEC 506 - Ag Mktg and Price Analysis
    • AGEC 610 - Agricultural Policy
    • AGEC 524 - Ag Finance
    • MGMT 610 - Financial Management I
    • AGEC 600 - Ag Finance
    • MGMT 611 - Financial Management II
    • AGEC 612 - Agricultural Production Economics I
    • MGMT 612 - Financial Management III
    • AGEC 616 - Resource Economics and Policy
    • AGEC 640 - Mgmt Financial
  • PhD Program:
    • AGEC 600 - Agricultural Finance
    • AGEC 613 - Introduction to Economics of Risk
    • Plus 3 credits from:
      • MGMT 617 - Seminar in Finance Markets II;
      • MGMT 618 - Seminar in Managerial Finance I; or
      • MGMT 619 - Seminar in Managerial Finance II
Energy, Resources and Environmental Economics
  • MS Program (course options):
    • AGEC 52500 - Environmental Policy Analysis  
    • AGEC 60400 - Fund of Applied Welfare Economics  
    • AGEC 61200 - Agricultural Production Economics I  
    • AGEC 64000 - Agricultural Policy
    • IE 54500 - Engineering Economics Analysis​
    • IE 54600 - Economic Decisions in Engineering
  • PhD ​Program:
    • AGEC 61600 - Resource Economics and Policy (3)
    • AGEC 61900 - Applied Economics (3)
    • Plus two of t​he following:
      • AGEC 60400 - Fund of Applied Welfare Economics (1) AND AGEC 60800 - Benefit Cost Analysis (2)
      • AGEC 61800 - Applied General Equilibrium Analysis (3)
      • AGEC 64000 - Agricultural Development and Policy (3)

International Development

  • MS Program (course options):
    • AGEC 50600 - Ag Marketing and Price Analysis
    • AGEC 591I - Intl Food and Agribusiness Marketing
    • AGEC 60400 - Fund of Applied Welfare Economics
    • AGEC 61200 - Agricultural Production Economics I
    • AGEC 61600 - Resource Economics and Policy
    • AGEC 64000 - Agricultural Policy
    • AGEC 64300 - Ag Economic Development
    • AGEC 64400 - International Agricultural Trade
    • ECON 52200 - Public Finance and Taxation
    • ECON 52300 - State and Local Finance
    • ECON 53500 - International Monetary Problems
  • PhD Program:
    • AGEC 64000 - Agricultural Policy (3)
    • AGEC 64300 - Ag Economic Development (3)
    • Plus 9 credits from:
      • AGEC 60400 - Fund of Applied Welfare Economics (1)
      • AGEC 60500 - Agricultural Price Analysis (3)
      • AGEC 60800 - Benefit Cost Analysis (2)
      • AGEC 61200 - Agricultural Production Economics I (3)
      • AGEC 61600 - Resource Economics and Policy (3)
      • AGEC 61800 - Applied General Equilibrium Analysis (3)
      • AGEC 62100 - Advanced Agricultural Marketing (3)
      • AGEC 63100 - Theory and Practice of Spatial Econometrics (3)
      • AGEC 64400 - International Agricultural Trade (3)
      • AGEC 65500 - Time Series Analysis (3) OR ECON 673 Time Series Econometrics (2)
      • ECON 67400 - Microeconomics (2)
International Trade
  • MS Program (course options):
    • AGEC 50600 - Marketing and Prices
    • AGEC 591I - Intl Food and Agribusiness Marketing
    • AGEC 60400 - Fund of Applied Welfare Econ
    • AGEC 64000 - Agricultural Policy
  • PhD Program:
    • AGEC 64400 - International Agricultural Trade (3)
    • ECON 63400 - International Trade Theory (2)
    • ECON 63600 - Empirical International Trade (2)
    • Plus at least one of the following:
      • ECON 69000 - Trade Topics (2)
      • ECON 63500 - Monetary International Economics (2)
      • AGEC 61800 - Applied General Equilibrium Analysis (3)
Markets and Industrial Organizations
  • MS Program (course options):
    • AGEC 50600 - Marketing and Prices
    • AGEC 53000 - Strategic Agribusiness Management
    • AGEC 596I - Intl Food and Agribusiness Marketing
    • AGEC 60500 - Agricultural Price Analysis
    • AGEC 61200 - Agricultural Production Economics I
    • AGEC 61300 - Introduction to Economics of Risk
    • AGEC 64000 - Agricultural Policy
    • AGEC 64400 - International Agricultural Trade
    • MGMT 61400 - Investments and Capital Markets
  • PhD Program (choose 9 credits from the following course options):
    • AGEC 60500 - Ag Marketing and Price Analysis (3)
    • AGEC 62100 - Advanced Agricultural Marketing (3)
    • AGEC 62200 - Food System Organization and Policy (3)
    • AGEC 69000 - Applied Contract Theory (3)
    • ECON 62000 - Industrial Organization 1 (2)
    • ECON 62100 - Industrial Organization 1I (2)
    • ECON 63100 - Empirical Industrial Organization (2)
    • ECON 61100 - Game Theory (2)
    • ECON 67600 - Economics of Uncertainty and Information I (2)
    • ECON 62200 - Public Economics (2)
    • ECON 67400 - Microeconomics (2)
    • ECON 68500 - Experimental Economics I (2)
    • ECON 68600 - Experimental Economics II (2)
Production Economics
  • MS Program (course options):
    • AGEC 50600 - Ag Marketing and Price Analysis
    • AGEC 52400 - Agricultural Finance
    • AGEC 60000 - Agricultural Finance
    • AGEC 61200 - Agricultural Production Economics I
    • AGEC 64000 - Agricultural Policy
  • PhD Program (required):
    • AGEC 61200 - Ag Production Economics I (3)
    • AGEC 61300 - Introduction to the Economics of Risk (3)
    • AGEC 61900 - Applied Economics (3) OR
    • AGEC 61400 - Applied Economics II (3) 
Space, Health and Population Economics (SHaPE)
  • MS Program (course options):
    •  AGEC 63200 - The Economics of Health Care and Health Policy
    •  AGEC 63000 - Urban and Regional Economics
    •  ASM 591F - GIS Applications
  • PhD Program (required):
    •  AGEC 63000 - Urban and Regional Economics (3)
    •  AGEC 63100 - Theory and Practice of Spatial Econometrics (3)
    •  AGEC 691 - Global Issues in Health and Demography (3)
    •  ​AGEC 63300 - Advanced Topics in Space, Health and Population Economics (1 credit seminar, taken multiple semesters with a max of 3 credits)



Agricultural Economics, 403 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907 USA, (765) 494-4191

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