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Visiting scholar to discuss crop insurance safety net at SDSU

Brookings, S.D. (KELO AM) - Farmers, crop insurance and the weather are intricately related and those interested in learning more about protecting themselves from loss are encouraged to come to South Dakota State University to hear a visiting scholar who is researching the subject.

Dmitry Vedenov, associate professor of agricultural economics at Texas A&M University, will come to campus tomorrow to present a seminar on "Approaches to Design of Weather Insurance Contracts Under Data Limitations."

The seminar will be held at the Avera Health and Science Center in room 0041 from 2 to 3:30 p.m. The seminar is free and open to the public.

"When you are dealing with data limitations, how do you actually design a contract and what sort of measurement tools are out there that will help you design a contract for insurance?" asks Eluned Jones, professor and head of the department of economics at SDSU. "Dr. Vedenov is an expert on this subject.

Specifically, Vedenov will discuss weather derivatives, which are essentially insurance contracts that protect farmers from losses due to unfavorable weather.

He said weather derivatives have the potential of providing an additional safety net for producers. However, practical design of the contracts is often hampered due to the lack of reliable yield data.

Vedenov is currently researching how to combine agronomic information on crops with economic theory in order to circumvent any data limitations.

"I'm looking forward to sharing my research with faculty and students," he said. "The results seem to be promising in that the designed contracts still retain most of the useful features of the weather derivatives."I

n the morning, Vedenov will meet with graduate students in economics to discuss a mathematical modeling structure for addressing risk management issues. 

He will hold an open discussion in Scobey Hall, room 133, with faculty and area stakeholders such as Raven Industries, South Dakota Wheat Growers Association, banks, crop insurance agencies and farm credit companies following the seminar.

For more information, contact the SDSU Department of Economics at (605) 688-4880.