Faustmann and Forest Economists

The Faustmann Symposium is a conference about forest economics that takes place every 4 years. It is named for Martin Faustmann, who developed the land expectation value formula, the solution to determine the profitability of a forest stand. His paper stands as a high watermark for not only forest economics but also investment theory in economics.

A plaque reading Martin Faustmann (1822-1876)
A plaque honoring Martin Faustmann

The 2019 Faustmann symposium marked the 170th anniversary of this formula, and forest economists from around the world gathered to present the state of the art economic research related to forestry problems. This year’s symposium, titled “Forest Economics for an Exciting Future” took place in “the Hunting Castle of Kranichstein” Darmstadt, Germany (October 6-9).

Dr. Andres Susaeta, Assistant Research Scientist with the School of Forest Resources and Conservation, attended the symposium and was appointed to the scientific board charged with selecting papers to be featured.

Susaeta also presented his own paper about optimal control theory in forest fire economics, in collaboration with Drs. Peter Deegen and Andreas Halbritter from TU Dresden, Germany.

“Basically, we built a model in which we try to understand how the probability of wildfire evolves with the age of the forest stand and also the structure of the stand (tree density and volume),” said Susaeta, “and how they impact the optimal forest management in terms of the value of the stand and timing of silvicultural operations.”

The street view of the town of Babenhausen, with cobblestone roads and brick buildings
The town of Babenhausen

While at the symposium Susaeta and his colleagues were fully immersed in the life and work of Faustmann: “We even had the chance to tour Babenhausen, the town where Martin Faustmann lived and worked, and explore his former forest laboratory,” he said.

Thank you to Dr. Susaeta for being an excellent representative of SFRC both here in Gainesville and abroad!

Dr. Susaeta and his many colleagues standing outside of a castle
Dr. Susaeta and his colleagues at the Symposium

Posted: November 17, 2019

Category: Forests, Natural Resources, Professional Development

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