Gary D. Thompson

Department Head, Agricultural & Resource Economics
Professor, Agricultural & Resource Economics
Gary Thompson

McClelland Park 304C

My research continues to focus on consumer demand for all sorts of products from residential water to organic foods. I am currently working on projects analyzing consumer demand for fruits and vegetables, food safety, and health concerns. I thoroughly enjoy applying microeconometric methods for analyzing these food and resource questions.

Though not entirely visible in my CV, since 2002 I have taught our Advanced Applied Econometrics M.S. class in which we work closely with American Express using their proprietary very large data sets to answer real-world business problems posed by American Express staff.  This innovative public-private collaboration with American Express in Phoenix, Arizona and New York City provides M.S. students a unique opportunity work with real data on a real problem and communicate the results in a formal business presentation made by students to American Express staff in Phoenix and NYC.  As part of the department’s specialization in applied econometrics, the capstone course has helped many alumni obtain applied econometrician jobs in financial, energy, health, communications and educational industries.

I currently serve as department head while maintaining an active research and teaching commitment.  If you would like to correspond with me, please send me an email here: sends e-mail)

Peace Corps

Country of Service: Guatemala

Service Years: 1977-1980

Service Sector: Agricultural Development

How did the AREC program connect your service and help you prepare for your professional experiences?

Peace Corps work provides you first-hand experience in the problems people face in achieving their aspirations for a better life. At the same time, you learn how to become more self-reliant, self-directed, and persevering in achieving your own goals. Living and working in another place, another culture and language cannot help but change your view of the world, other peoples, and the natural environment.

Why would you recommend that an RPCV join our M.S. program?

As a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer at the University of Arizona, you will find a welcoming, supportive community of RPCVs. In the Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, you will be able to study and master highly applicable skills, interact with interesting peers from around the world, and enhance your ability to continue serving in new ways while making a good living.