Dr Elizabeth Nolan
My main research interest is in the effects of genetic modification, Intellectual Property Rights and market concentration on plant breeding and innovation in plant breeding. This interest was originally inspired by an interest in trade and development, and particularly the possible effect of the Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS) Agreement LDCs. I also use econometrics to analyse yield data from wheat and canola trials in Australia, and to evaluate the contribution of wool attributes to the price of wool lots sold at auction in Australia.
I am interested in research into the effects of plant variety protection on agricultural innovation, plant breeding research, and market power in agricultural input markets. Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) are generally justified on the basis that they encourage innovation. Their introduction has been accompanied by a decline in public investment in plant breeding, increased market concentration, and an emphasis on commercially successful varieties rather those which will meet world food needs. The widespread adoption of genetic modification in maize, cotton, soybean and canola, and the concentration of ownership of the GM traits, adds another dimension. I have used data compiled from experimental field trials of crops, specifically corn in the United States, to estimate the contribution of GM traits and their combinations to yield, and yield variability, of crops. I am focusing on corn/maize, given that of the four main crops to have adopted GM (cotton, maize, canola, soybeans) it is the only one which is a staple food in some areas of the world. In conjunction with fourth year students data from Australian trials of wheat and canola varieties have been used to evaluate the marginal effect of various inputs, and of weather, on yields and yield variability.
Another area of research is the evaluation of the effect of the presence of attributes in wool lots sold at auction in Australia on wool price, and the work also includes an investigation of an example of ethical production, the effect of mulesing status of flocks on wool price.
Elizabeth Nolan’s career began with the completion of a BScAgr (Hons) at the University of Sydney. She then worked in corporate lending with the Banque Nationale de Paris in Sydney. Liz returned to teaching at the University of Sydney on a casual, then fixed term, and now continuing basis. Liz has been enrolled in a part time PhD in the Faculty since 2004. Her thesis entitled 'The contribution of genetic modification to changes in corn production in the United States' was awarded in March 2013.
- Nolan, E., and P. Santos.( 2012). The Contribution of Genetic Modification to Changes in Corn Yield in the United States. American Journal of Agricultural Economics 94(5): 1171-1188.
- Nolan, E. and Ahmadi-Esfahani, F. (2007). Predicting Performance in Undergraduate Agricultural Economics. Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics 51, 1-15
- Shi, G., J.P. Chavas, J. Lauer and E. Nolan. (2012). An Analysis of Selectivity in the Productivity Evaluation of Biotechnology, American Journal of Agricultural Economics. Forthcoming
- Koppi, T., Nolan, E. and Field, D. (2010). Developing Transferable Research Skills in First Year Agricultural Economics Students. Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice 7(2).
- Nolan, E., Farrell, T., Ryan, M., Gibbon, C. and Ahmadi-Esfahani, F.Z. Valuing quality attributes of Australian merino wool. Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics (under review – revised and resubmitted)
Recent Conference Papers
- Nolan, E. and Santos, P. 2012. Insurance and GM traits. Paper selected for presentation at the 28th Triennial Conference of the International Association of Agricultural Economists, Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil.18- 24 August 2012.
- Nolan, E., Santos, P. and Shi, G. (2012). Market concentration and productivity in the United States corn sector: 2002-2009. Selected Paper prepared for presentation at the Agricultural & Applied Economics Association 2011 Annual Meeting, Seattle, WA, August 12-14.
- Nolan, E. (2012). Wool prices, mulesing status and, media attention. Contributed paper presented at the 56th Annual Conference of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, Fremantle, 7-10 February, 2012.
- Nolan, E. and Santos, P. (2011). Risk premiums and GM traits. Contributed paper presented at the 55th Annual Conference of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, Melbourne, 9-11 February, 2011.
- Nolan, E. and Santos, P. (2011). Risk Premiums and GM Crops. Selected Paper prepared for presentation at the Agricultural & Applied Economics Association 2011 Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, PA, July 24-26.