Field of Focus
  • Decision, Risk and Management Science
  • Economics
Area of Expertise
Natural Resource Economics and the Economics of Regulation
  • Ph.D. in Economics, University of Texas, Austin, Texas, U.S.A.
  • B.S., James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Virginia, U.S.A.

David Letson is an economist and Professor of Marine Ecosystems and Society at the University of Miami. He focuses on natural resource economics and the economics of weather and climate. He also participates in a multi-disciplinary evaluation of climate forecasting for agricultural and water resources management in the southeastern US and Argentina, as part of the Southeastern Climate Consortium (SECC), a group of six universities (Alabama-Huntsville, Auburn, Georgia, Miami, Florida and Florida State). The SECC receives support from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). In his natural hazards research, Letson is helping develop an internet-based survey approach to estimate the economic value of hurricane forecast attributes. In another project, Letson has helped create an electronic futures market to advance understanding of how hurricane track forecasts are interpreted and used. He is also a member of NOAA’s Hurricane Working Group, convened by the National Weather Service and the Office of Atmospheric Research to develop a hurricane socio-economic research agenda. Letson is also studying the effect of climate variability, as well as economic and regulatory changes, on the value of Gulf of Mexico red snapper recreational catch. During 1990-1995, Letson served as an environmental economist with the Natural Resources and the Environment Division of the Economic Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture.