Robert D. Weaver



Professor of Agricultural Economics 
Member Operations Research Faculty
Affiliate Professor of Industrial Engineering

The Pennsylvania State University



Office Contacts:
203 Armsby Bldg
The Pennsylvania State University University Park, Pennsylvania 16802


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Ph.D., Economics, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Current Research   Dr. Weaver's current research focuses on applied microeconomics and empirical analysis of issues related to managing the performance of private enterprise extended in one of two dimensions: 1) through interorganizational collaborations in production and marketing systems and 2) through consideration of environmental processes impacted by private production decisions.  Of typical interest is analysis of private and public policy strategies to manage or enhance performance dynamically, spatially, or within vertical chains or networks.  Performance metrics of interest have spanned productivity, profitability, sustainability, and resilience.  Recent studies have had one of three focuses: 1) evaluation of new technologies, their impacts and management; 2) the relational management of firm within markets, value chains or networks to enhance performance in bilateral contexts of contracting and incentive design (applications include management of supply chains including efficiency, quality and nonmarket good flows (e.g. environmental effects) and multilateral network environments, and 3) collaborative organization of enterprises to enhance performance.  For applications, Dr. Weaver has analyzed environmental economic issues concerning the management of R&D, biodiversity, plant germplasm, water quality, and market-oriented approaches to managing quality and environmental impacts of agricultural and food system practices.  Most recent grants have funded research on the use of contracting to manage price risk, quality, and environmental performance of vertically chains. Other funded research has examined the potential for interorganizational collaboration to support local and regional economic growth and innovation. New funding examines agent level adaptive strategy to manage deep climatic uncertainty through ensemble simulation.   

Experience   Dr. Weaver has served as Senior Project Officer at the National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council.  He has been a visiting scholar at I.N.R.A./Rennes; University of Toulouse (France); University of Claremont-Ferrand, France; Catholic University, Louvain-La Nerve (Belgium); Wageningen Agricultural University (Netherlands), Institute of Agricultural Development in Central and Eastern Europe, Halle, Germany, and Copenhagen Business School.  Most recently, he was Fulbright visiting professor at University of Vienna.  He has consulted extensively with the World Bank, U.S.A.I.D., U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee, U.S. Congress Office of Technology Assessment, Council of Environmental Quality, (Executive Office of the President) and other government agencies as well as private corporations.  He has worked frequently in Korea on growth strategy and has had active and on-going collaborations on extended visits by colleagues from Université de Toulouse (France) and the Institute of Agricultural Economics, Christian-Albrechts University, Kiel and University of Bonn, Germany; South China University.  Sabbatical years have included  National Research Council, National Academy of Sciences; University of Rennes, France, and a Fulbright Fellowship year at Vienna University of Economics and Business in Vienna, Austria.   

Teaching.   Prof. Weaver has offered Ph.D. courses in econometrics, microeconometrics, nonparametric methods, applied production economics, time series, and modeling of prices and transactions for forecasting and analysis.  At the M.S. and senior undergraduate level, he has regularly offered courses in price analysis and forecasting, applied game theory within the context of strategy, and economics of value chain and network management of value chains and networks. He offered for six years an M.S. level intensive version of the later course at Copenhagen Business School during the summer session.   He initiated and now directs an International Exchange Program that provides for undergraduate and graduate level semester exchanges with Copenhagen Business School, Universite de Rennes (France), University of Kiel, and Czech Agricultural University of Prague.  He also developed an international consortium for collaborative development of curriculum in managing global value chains and networks that was funded by Department of Education to support 21 student exchanges to and from three EU partner institutions and U.S. partner institutions (Arizona State University and the University of Wisconsin.)  Most recently he presented a two week long intensive lecture series "Gauging Productivity and Efficiency: Nonparametric Methods" in Prague sponsored by the European Commission. 

revised August 2020