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Abigail Okrent

Economist
202-694-5206
Email: aokrent@ers.usda.gov

Briefly:

Abigail is a research economist in the Food Economics Division. The primary goal of her research is to evaluate the effectiveness of food and agricultural policies on food consumption, obesity, and nutrition. In particular, her current research projects include modeling: (1) the determinants of consumer demand, including how prices, income, advertising, and convenience affect dietary behavior; (2) the complex interaction between consumer food consumption behavior and individual health and nutrition outcomes; and (3) the costs and benefits of various food and agriculture policies.

Background:

Abigail joined ERS in 2010 upon completion of her dissertation, "The Effects of Farm Commodity and Retail Food Policies on Obesity and Economic Welfare in the United States" at the University of California at Davis. Prior to graduate school, Abigail worked as an economist in the Industry Economics Division of the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), Department of Commerce. Her primary activities at the BEA included research and measurement of various service industries for the Benchmark Input-Output and GDP-by-Industry Accounts.

Education:

B.A. Economics, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, 2000

M.S. Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California at Davis, 2005

Ph.D. Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of California at Davis, 2010

Professional Affiliations:

American Agricultural Economics Association (AAEA); Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society

Selected Publications:

Selected Recent Book Chapters and Monographs:

Alston, J.M., A.M. Okrent, and J.P. Parks. "U.S. Food Policy and Obesity," Public Health–-Social and Behavioral Health, J. Maddock, editor. Rijeka, Croatia: InTech--Open Access Publishers, 2012.

Okrent, A. M. and J. M. Alston. Demand for Food in the United States: A Review of Literature, Evaluation of Previous Estimates and Presentation of New Estimates of Demand. Giannini Foundation Monograph Series No. 48, Giannini Foundation of Agricultural Economics, Berkeley, CA, 2011.

Selected Recent Professional Journal Articles:

Liaukonyte, J., B.J. Rickard, H.M. Kaiser, A.M. Okrent, and T.J. Richards. "Evaluating Advertising Strategies for Fruits and Vegetables and the Implications for Obesity in the United States,". Food Policy 37 (5): 543–553, 2012.

Okrent, A.M. and J.M. Alston. "The Effects of Farm Commodity and Retail Food Policies on Obesity and Economic Welfare in the United States," American Journal of Agricultural Economics 94 (1): 611–646, 2012.

Rickard, B.J., A.M. Okrent, and J.M. Alston. "How Have Agricultural Policies Influenced Caloric Consumption in the United States?" Health Economics doi: 10.1002/hec.2799, Feb. 2012.

Last updated: Thursday, April 25, 2013

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