Jeffrey Hopkins

Jeffrey W. Hopkins

Branch Chief


Jeff Hopkins is the chief of the Farm Economy Branch in the Resource and Rural Economy Division. As branch chief, he manages a program of research and analysis activities focused on farm business and farm household finance. The work includes regular reporting on the levels of farm sector, farm business, and farm household well-being as well as carrying out research and analysis of drivers of change in these levels. Additionally, the branch carries out research on land ownership, land tenure, and land values. Jeff also assists in leading the Agricultural Resources Management Survey (ARMS), especially as it relates to the farm financial accounts and farm household well-being.

Jeff's research background and expertise includes farm situation and outlook, farmland ownership, and the implications of government payments on agricultural production. Additionally, he has carried out work on the environmental impacts of farm production practices.


Jeff became branch chief in August 2015, and previously served as an economist in the Farm Economy Branch from 1999 to 2004. For over ten years, Jeff worked outside of ERS, including as an agricultural and resources budget analyst for the House Budget Committee (2005-06), as principal advisor for climate policy for international mining company Rio Tinto (2007-13), and as the vice president for policy and analysis at the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (2013-15).


Jeff received a Ph.D. and M.Sc. in agricultural economics and rural sociology at The Ohio State University and a B.A. in international studies from Miami University.

Selected Publications

Hopkins, J. 2015. Modeling EPA’s Clean Power Plan: Insights for Cost-Effective Implementation, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, Arlington, VA.

Lipper, L., R. Cavatassi, and J. Hopkins. 2009. "The Role of Crop Genetic Diversity in Coping with Drought: Insights from Eastern Ethiopia," in Agrobiodiversity Conservation and Economic Development, A. Kontoleon, U. Pascual, and M. Smale, eds., pp. 183-204. London, UK: Routledge Press. 

Burfisher, M., and J. Hopkins. 2004. Decoupled Payments in a Changing Policy Setting, AER-838, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.

Aigner, D., J. Hopkins, and R. Johansson. 2003. "Beyond Compliance: Sustainable Business Practices and the Bottom Line," American Journal of Agricultural Economics (85)5:1126-1139.

Hopkins, J., and M. Morehart. 2002. "An Empirical Analysis of the Farm Problem: Comparability in Rates of Return," in Agricultural Policy for the 21st Century, L. Tweeten, and S. Thompson, eds., pp. 70-90. Iowa City, IA: Iowa State University Press.