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Dr. John Antle, a professor in OSU’s Applied Economics Department, was invited to present a keynote lecture at the TradeM International Workshop “Economics of integrated assessment approaches for agriculture and the food sector,” in November of 2014 in Olso, Norway. His presentation, titled Climate Change and Food Security: Improving the Relevance and Credibility of Global and Regional Integrated Assessments, tackled the reliability of information from climate change modeling assessments that incorporate various food security dimensions at local, regional and global scales. In an effort to provide credible decision-making information to stakeholders and policy-makers, Antle laid out the progress and gaps in agricultural modeling research, as well as future initiatives for researchers and decision-makers alike.
As climate variability impacts crop production and the world population grows exponentially, the demands on the agricultural sector are increasingly more challenging to meet. Antle, co-leader of the Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Project (AgMIP) Economics Team, helps navigate these issues by using “cutting-edge information technology to produce improved crop and economic models and the next generation of climate impact projections” (agmip.org, 2014). In light of the continuing effects of climate change on the stability of agriculture production and farming communities worldwide, AgMIP’s goals are twofold: (1) increase food security and (2) enhance adaptive capacity across both developed and developing countries.
Confronting how to feed the world in the face of climate change necessitates trans-disciplinary research, cooperation and implementation by global stakeholders, and, in the era of big data, big thinking. Antle’s professional track-record merits his expertise in these capacities. He has applied economics to some of the world’s most pressing socioeconomic issues. A contributing author to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessment Reports, his work has helped to inform the public and policy-makers by providing new and improved scientific research on current and future projected impacts of climate change. In addition, he has empowered scientists and encouraged global cooperation by conducting international training workshops on agricultural assessment tradeoff modeling tools (TOA-MD). These modeling tools can inform policy to address a variety of problems with which farmers struggle including alleviating poverty, mitigating the adverse effects of climate change on crop yields, and maximizing the production of ecosystem services.