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Eduardo A. Souza Rodrigues

Eduardo A. Souza Rodrigues
Kernan Brothers Environmental Fellow: 2012-2013

Eduardo Souza Rodrigues is an economist interested in the causes of the deforestation in the Amazon and in the costs and effectiveness of policies that promote conservation.

Eduardo received a B.A. in 2000 and a M.Sc. in 2003 both in Economics from the University of São Paulo, Brazil. He then worked for three years at the Brazilian Central Bank. After that, he started in the Economics program at Yale University in 2006 and completed his Ph.D. in 2012. His Ph.D. research estimated the demand for deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon and, based on this estimate, investigated the impacts of three policy interventions: (a) payments to avoid deforestation; (b) Pigouvian taxes on agricultural land; (c) quantitative limits in land-use. He concluded that both payments and taxes would have been effective in avoiding deforestation, while quantitative limits would have been too costly for local farmers. He also developed nonparametric estimators that can be applied to land-use choice models using micro data, as well as to other similar contexts.

As an Environmental Fellow, Eduardo will work with Professor Ariel Pakes in the Department of Economics. He will develop and estimate a dynamic model of land use decision for the Brazilian Amazon. The model will serve two purposes: First, it will be used to estimate the elasticity of deforestation (and of emissions of carbon) with respect to commodity prices. Second, it will be used to evaluate the dynamic implications of environmental policies.