Dr. Charles Moss has taken on a new role within the department of Food and Resource Economics as Associate Chair.
Moss, who joined the faculty at the University of Florida in September of 1987, is a full professor with a teaching and research appointment and an affiliate member of the Center for Applied Optimization and the Center for Latin American Studies, both at the University of Florida. He replaces Dr. Rick Weldon in the role of associate chair, as Weldon leaves the department to enjoy a well-earned retirement after 34 years of service to the University of Florida.
Moss received his B.S. in Agricultural Economics and Accounting and M.S. in Agricultural Economics from Oklahoma State University, and his Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from Purdue University.
He has won several awards for his work, including the Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics Outstanding Journal Article award in 2006 with Steve Blank and Kenneth Erickson, the American Agricultural Economics Association (AAEA) Quality of Research Discovery Award in 2007 for research in collaboration with Grigorios Livanis, Vincent Breneman, and Richard Nehring and the AAEA Quality of Communication Award in 2013 in collaboration with Allen Featherstone and Christine Wilson. In 2013, Charles was recognized with the Southern Agricultural Economics Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
In service to the field of agricultural economics, Moss has also served Co-Editor of the Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics and on the editorial boards of the Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics and the Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics.
Throughout his many years of experience in the field, he has found that while the specific issues themselves change with the contemporary state of the world, in a cyclical fashion the same topics come up, especially within the field of macroeconomics.
“Everything old is new again,” Moss said.
His research has primarily focused on financial risk and stress in the farm sector. “What is a farmer’s labor worth?” Moss questioned. “Where does that labor come from, and is time in the office more valuable than time on the tractor? There should not ever be a reason this profession becomes boring, as the trends continue to push us in newly viable directions.”
When it comes to teaching, Moss focuses on empirical analysis of agricultural decision-making through courses such as AEB 7184 Agricultural Production Economics and AEB 5188 Economics of Business Decisions.
Most recently, Moss has been conducting research into the impact of the American opiate epidemic on rural communities and the agricultural labor industry, using a model he developed in 2020 to help predict COVID-19 outbreaks in collaboration with Dr. Lori Ann Post at the Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine.
He notes the wide variety of student experiences represented in the department, and how the major and field of agricultural economics have changed over time to be more diverse.
“When I started, we were all farm kids,” said Moss, who grew up on a family-owned farm. “We thought we knew exactly what this was about, of course. And over time, the programs have expanded, the scope has changed.”
In this new role, Moss is looking forward to continuing to grow and stay interested as he serves as support for department chair Dr. Lisa House.
“I would hate to be in a field where things didn’t change,” Moss said. “That’s what I always try to follow is keep yourself interested. Be flexible and add new skills to change with the structure of industry.”