MSU names Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics chairperson
posted on August 27, 2015 2:08pm
EAST LANSING, Mich. – Titus O. Awokuse has been named chairperson of the Department of Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics (AFRE) in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) at Michigan State University. His appointment was effective August 17.
Awokuse most recently served as chairperson of the Department of Applied Economics and Statistics at the University of Delaware, where he was also a professor.
“Titus is poised to lead a department that is one of the largest in our college,” said CANR Dean Fred Poston. “He joins a group of faculty members who are working in Michigan and around the world to address some of the toughest issues of our time in food, energy and the environment.”
Awokuse replaces Lindon Robison, who was serving as chairperson on an interim basis.
“I am very honored to have the special opportunity of joining the Michigan State University community and serving as the chairperson for the Department of Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics,” Awokuse said. “It will be very exciting to lead such a dynamic and productive unit.
“I’m quite impressed with the excellent faculty and staff in AFRE and the potential for working together with them to build stronger and more impactful programs in research, education, outreach and engagement in Michigan and across the globe. I look forward to building collaborative working relationships with the students, faculty, dean, and other administrators and staff members in the college and throughout MSU,” he continued.
Awokuse serves as a consultant for the United Nations World Food Program and its Food and Agricultural Organization. His research interests include international trade policy, economic growth and development, health economics and global food security. In 2014 he was appointed to the 14-member Nigerian National Agricultural Policy Committee to help the country develop a strong policy roadmap. The economic policy working committee assessed agricultural policy projects and initiatives developed as part of the Agricultural Transformation Agenda in Nigeria.
“Titus brings energy, experience and a quick grasp of the opportunities and challenges confronting our department,” said Professor Scott Swinton, who chaired the search committee that recruited Awokuse.
Awokuse earned his doctorate in agricultural and applied economics from Texas A&M University. He earned his master’s and bachelor’s degrees in economics from Murray State University and Berea College, respectively.
He has taught classes in international agricultural trade and marketing, agricultural and natural resource policy, applied data analysis and statistical research methods. Additionally, he has served as primary advisor for more than a dozen graduate students.
Awokuse started at the University of Delaware as a visiting professor in 2000. In 2011, he became a professor in the departments of Economics and Applied Economics and Statistics. Between 2000 and 2011, he was an assistant and then associate professor and served as director of graduate programs in the UD Department of Food and Resource Economics.
Awokuse is a fellow of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities’ Food Systems Leadership Institute and of the Institute for Transforming Undergraduate Education at the University of Delaware. He is a member of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, the American Economic Association, the Council on the Status of Blacks in Agricultural Economics and the International Association of Agricultural Economists.