Current Activities

Project Management Certifications Awarded

Five ERS employees were recently certified as Project Management Professionals by the Project Management Institute. Andrew Kerns, Peter Kostik, Gina Pearson, Douglas Parry, and Stephen Peterson successfully completed the requirements for certification and will now use their expertise to lead information technology improvement efforts at ERS. In particular, they will upgrade the bandwidth of ERS’s communications lines to allow transmission of large amounts of data from external sources to support ERS research projects. They will also implement a content management system to enhance presentation of research data and publications on the ERS website and further improve the Agricultural Resource Management Survey and Market Analysis and Trade Electronic Reporting System data tools. Ron Bianchi.

Research Project Wins Award

In September 2005, ERS received the 2005 Outstanding Public Issues Education Program award from the National Public Policy Education Committee (NPPEC) for the research project, “What the Public Values About Farmland.” This multi-year effort, spawned from a research planning workshop co-sponsored by ERS and Farm Foundation, consisted of several workshops and research projects that were designed to created a dialogue between economic researchers and the end users of research results at the State and local levels. The project was led by individuals from ERS; USDA’s Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service; USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service; and several land-grant universities. The purpose of the program was to commission high-quality research on valuing the nonmarket amenities provided by farmland and put it in the hands of land use planners and other policymakers.