Steven Wallander



Steven Wallander is an economist with USDA’s Economic Research Service with the Conservation and Environment Branch. His research focuses on land and water conservation policies. He studies behavioral responses to policies: the impact of contract structure and auction design on farmers’ program participation decisions, the potential for compensating behavior in response to subsidies for capital investment in conservation technology, and the role of climate and drought risk as a driver of program participation decisions. Most of this research involves the application of econometric models to farm-level surveys or large administrative datasets. Steven also works on experimental economics projects that examine the role of information provision within complex federal programs. In terms of topic areas at USDA, Steven’s research experience includes irrigation, climate change, USDA conservation programs, double cropping, cover crops, and biofuels. Prior to working on agricultural issues for USDA, Steven worked on residential water conservation, urban storm water management, open space planning, and transportation planning.


Steven joined the Economic Research Service in 2009. In 2011, Steven worked in the USDA Climate Change Program Office, focusing on climate change adaptation and mitigation issues relating to the agricultural and forestry sectors. Prior to joining USDA, Steven worked for the New York City Department of Environmental Protection, focusing on conservation and wetland restoration, and the Department of City Planning, focusing on transportation issues.


Steven received a Ph.D. in Environmental Economics from Yale University’s School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, an M.S. in Urban Environmental Planning from Pratt Institute, and a B.A. in Philosophy and Environmental Studies from Hobart College.