CAST Releases New Commentary on " Economic Impacts of COVID-19 on Food and Agricultural Markets "
June 29, 2020 | Council for Agricultural Science and Technology—Ames, Iowa
The Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) and the Agricultural & Applied Economics Association (AAEA) have partnered together on a new paper, Economic Impacts of COVID-19 on Food and Agricultural Markets. This publication contains insights from 29 experts and is now available for download .

COVID-19 disrupted nations around the world in 2020. People have had to alter their typical lifestyle, and the measures put into effect to reduce the spread of COVID-19 have had an immense impact on economic activity, employment, food consumption, and workplace environments.

The paper’s authors discuss the following topics: macroeconomics, trade, supply chain, consumer behavior, food service/grocery, meat processing, forestry and wood products, local food systems, food waste, food insecurity, major commodity crops, agricultural finance, agricultural labor, rural health care, and research and outreach priorities.

William R. Freudenburg Award of Merit Recipient

Every year, the Natural Resources RIG solicits nominations for the William R. Freudenburg Award of Merit, a distinction that recognizes exceptional contributions have demonstrably impacted the sociology of natural resources and the environment. We are pleased to announce that Dr. Kathryn Brasier is the 2020 recipient of the NRRIG William R. Freudenburg Award of Merit.

We received numerous nomination letters that highlighted Dr. Brasier’s truly impressive accomplishments and contributions to our field. Those nominations had a collective focus on Dr. Brasier’s dedication to the growth of not only her research, but also the teams and partnerships she had created along the way. Dr. Brasier is a unifier across disciplines, scales, and career stages. For example, one nominator commended “her ability to bring together biophysical and social scientists, activists, citizens and farmers in ways that build trust and catalyze a vision for positive change that enables action." Dr. Brasier’s aptitude for fostering collaborative environments and nurturing new ideas and experiences across rural environments highlights the long-lasting impact her involvement and knowledge has had on natural resources and their management in Pennsylvania and beyond. These positive qualities are recognized and celebrated far beyond the ivory tower, as another nominator explained: “Dr. Brasier’s dedication and expertise embodies the very essence of the practitioner scholar –both the research base and the countless communities, organizations, agencies, and decision-makers that have been impacted by her work are better for it.”

Student Paper Award Recipient

This year we received several truly outstanding submissions, each presenting data and theory at the intersection of rural sociology and natural resources. We are delighted to share that Victoria Abou-Ghalioum is the winner of the 2020 NRRIG Student Paper Competition. Her submission, titled “Expanding environmentalism: Racial/ethnic, place, and socioeconomic identities as pro-environmental behavioral antecedents” analyzed General Social Survey data to look at relationships between social identities and pro-environmental behavior. She found that racial/ethnic identity is the strongest indicator of pro-environmental behaviors, followed by some place identities. The judging committee were extremely impressed by Victoria’s sound methodology and clear and comprehensive writing style.

Victoria is a PhD student at the Ohio State University studying the intersections between racial, ethnic, and place identity and their relationships with pro-environmental behavior. She utilizes theoretical perspectives from rural sociology and environmental psychology to critically examine the identity-exclusivity of the environmental movement and how to expand this movement. She hopes to continue this work in applied, community development settings focused on environmental and social justice.

Please join us in congratulating Victoria on her impressive submission.

COVID-19, Agriculture, and Food: Special Collection of Agriculture and Human Values

RSS Member Matthew Sanderson has recently shared a collection of essays related to COVID-19. He writes:

I am very pleased to announce a Special Collection of essays on COVID-19, Agriculture, and Food, in Agriculture and Human Values.

This collection assembles in-the-moment essays and commentaries from over 120 scholars, authors, practitioners, farmers, activists, and analysts of agriculture and food systems around the world.  Please find attached the complete list of contributors, listed in alphabetical order (corresponding author last name) and titles of the essays in the Special Collection.  The list is prefaced by my brief editorial introduction.

I am very pleased to let you know that Springer has agreed to allow all articles in this collection to be freely available, for download and viewing, for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.  You can find the essays here (note there are four pages):

I hope you will find much to inspire your thinking and action in these times.


For more information, click here.

Rural Sociology Society, Gender and Sexualities RIG Summer Conference Sessions
Please join us for the Rural Sociology Society, Gender and Sexualities RIG Summer Conference Sessions!
All sessions will be on Zoom the third Wednesday of each month, 11:00-12:15pm (eastern).
Zoom password: RSSGender

Wed., June 17th @ 11am (eastern):
- Amanda Crump and Dana Armstrong: Economic Feasibility of Ethanol Fuel for Clean cooking in Upland Sierra Leone
- Jacobs Adzenga Ior: The impact of communal conflicts on rural women in Nigeria: Implications on rural and agricultural development
- Marcia Owens: Black and Female at the Same Time: The Recognition and Relevance of Intersectionality in the Diversity and Inclusion of Black Women in STEM/SBS at Historically Black Colleges and Universities

Wed., July 15 @ 11am (eastern):
- Ryanne Pilgeram and Katie Dentzman: Same-Sex Farming Couples: An Analysis of Sustainability and Eco-Queer Theory Using USDA Census of Agriculture Data
-  Katie Dentzman and Ryanne Pilgeram: A quantitative analysis of how gender relates to farming methods in the US
- Hannah Whitley: 'Outsiders within' the urban farm: Exploring identities, lived experiences, and self-identified needs of Black women agriculturalists in Pittsburgh, PA
Wed., August 19 @ 11am (eastern):
- Emily Southard: Women's Empowerment and Gender Essentialism in Cambodia's Vegetable Value-Chains
- Ana Zepeda and Amanda Crump: Surviving to Thriving: Understanding urban agriculture in San Juan, Puerto Rico through a feminist lens
- Hazel Valascios and Kathy Sexsmith: Gendered impacts of climate change: Perceptions of smallholder coffee farmers in Intibucá, Honduras