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Awards and Honors


Gordon has been visionary in seeing new directions and bringing about possibilities that have challenged others’ imaginations.

Academic Awards and Honors

Dr. Rausser has received the two highest honors awarded by the College of Natural Resources (CNR) at the University of California, Berkeley. The CNR Citation (2004) and Achievement Award (2010) recognize Dr. Rausser’s outstanding contributions to teaching, research, outreach, and administration while serving as Dean, College of Natural Resources (1994–2000); Chair, Agricultural and Resource Economics Department (1979–84, 1993–94); and Professor, Agricultural and Resource Economics (1979–present).

Contributions as Dean of the College of Natural Resources, University of California, Berkeley, 1994–2000

It was a David and Goliath story . . .

Dr. Rausser accepted the position of Dean of the College of Natural Resources (CNR) in 1994. At that time, the college’s reputation was flagging, and its continued existence was threatened. Dr. Rausser showed vision and leadership in redefining the mission of CNR: to integrate the natural, biological, and social sciences so that scientists and students could address real-world problems at the nexus of agriculture, natural resources, and the environment.

By the time Dr. Rausser stepped down from his position as dean in 2000, CNR had been reestablished as a leading global center of research and teaching.

One top university administrator celebrated Dr. Rausser’s commitment to academic excellence:

Gordon had an unwavering commitment to academic excellence that motivated everything he did as dean. Gordon fought tenaciously and imaginatively against the  plan [to reduce CNR’s resources], and he won. It was a David and Goliath story; . . . Gordon’s success resulted from a characteristic combination of being wily, smart, and pugnacious. He had a determined and optimistic belief in the college’s potential that led him to ask fundamental questions, challenge assumptions, and make big plans. I can think of few individuals who had so significant effect upon their colleges.

Another senior administrator commented on Dr. Rausser’s “tenacity”:

All in the College [of Natural Resources] are indebted to Gordon for his tenacity in successfully defending programs and securing resources during the difficult period he served as dean. He was undoubtedly key to preserving CNR as we know it today.

Another professor praised Dr. Rausser’s performance as dean in the highest terms:

As a dean, Gordon was far and away more effective than any predecessors over the past fifty years.

“Berkeleyan Article”

“Breakthroughs Article”

“A Distinguished Record of Academic Service”

Contributions as Chair of Agricultural and Resource Economics, 1979–84, 1993–94

During his first term as Chair of his department (1979–84), Dr. Rausser recognized that his department (formerly known as the Department of Agricultural Economics) needed to broaden its scope and rebuild itself. Dr. Rausser led the following initiatives:

  • Broaden the department’s expertise to accommodate new disciplines such as natural-resource economics, environmental economics, trade, and international development;
  • Hire new faculty;
  • Increase the department’s institutional prominence.

By the end of Dr. Rausser’s term, his department’s national ranking had risen from #11 to #1.

Contributions as Distinguished Professor


He is an outstanding motivator of students.

—a former graduate student

Dr. Rausser has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in Agricultural Economics, Econometrics, Environmental Economics, Microeconomics, and Quantitative Policy Analysis. He has mentored many graduate and undergraduate students and visiting scholars and directed more than 60 Ph.D. dissertations.

Graduate and undergraduate students have found Dr. Rausser to be an unusually dynamic and effective instructor. Early in his career, Dr. Rausser received a Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award from Harvard University (1978). The Citation (2004) and Achievement Awards (2010) he received from the College of Natural Resources at the University of California, Berkeley, also recognized his teaching accomplishments.

Dr. Rausser’s first love is mentoring graduate students. He has advised more than 60 successful doctoral candidates, many of whom who now teach and conduct research throughout the country as first-rate theoretical and empirical micro-economists. Several of his former students hold academic positions in Agricultural Economics, Economics, and Business Administration departments. Dr. Rausser also continues to conduct and publish research with some of his former protégés.


Political Power and Economic Policy tells us what everybody wants to know in this new world where lobbying and political maneuvers have replaced economic sense. What is the relation between economic rationality and political maneuvering? And how do we contain the interest groups that have trumped the public well-being to accomplish their selfish ends?

—George A. Akerlof, Nobel Laureate in Economics, 2001

Since he began conducting academic research in the early 1970s, Dr. Gordon Rausser has published hundreds of articles and several well-regarded books and presented his research at many academic conferences worldwide.

On the basis of his distinguished publication record, Dr. Rausser has received 13 national research awards, granted by such organizations as the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association and the Western Agricultural Economics Association (WAEA). Most recently (2012), Dr. Rausser received a Distinguished Scholar Award from the WAEA.

His most recent book, published by Cambridge University Press and co-authored by Johan Swinnen and Pinhas Zusman, is the well-received Political Power and Economic Policy (2011). In this book, Dr. Rausser and his colleagues analyze the links between political economics, governance structures, and the distribution of political power in economic policymaking.

Dr. Rausser has also been appointed editor of significant publications in his field, such as the Annual Review of Resource Economics and Volumes 1 and 2 of the Handbook[s] of Agricultural Economics (Elsevier).

Dr. Rausser is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, and the American Statistical Association.

For a complete bibliography of Dr. Rausser’s research, please see his CV

To download copies of Dr. Rausser’s journal publications and working papers, please go to Download Publications

Public Service Awards

In 1986, Dr. Rausser was offered a position as Senior Economist on President Ronald Reagan’s Council of Economic Advisers. As Senior Economist, he helped set up the Uruguay Round of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) negotiations. The Uruguay Round ultimately established the World Trade Organization, removed barriers to international trade and business, established intellectual property rights, and reduced global agricultural subsidies. In 2000, Dr. Rausser received a USDA Secretary of Agriculture Award for outstanding accomplishments in the areas of agricultural public-policy research and formulation.

Following his term on the council, Dr. Rausser served as Chief Economist at the Agency for International Development (AID) (1988–90). While serving at AID, Dr. Rausser led the modernization of the economic counsel provided to AID Mission Directors throughout the developing world. He also designed the principles and framework for new-country strategy-development statements. In recognition of his achievements at AID, Dr. Rausser received a Superior Unit Citation Award (1990).


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