The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T +44 (0)1227 764000
Centre for European Agri-Environmental Economics
CEAS has a long history of participating in the policy debate in Europe and enhancing research of a European dimension. The idea for the originally named Centre for European Agricultural Studies arose in 1971 in the School of Agricultural Economics, Wye College, University of London. Its rationale was that as the UK joined the European Common Market agricultural affairs in Britain would be heavily influenced by the Common Agricultural Policy. It was considered important that there should be an independent centre of research excellence which would focus on the implications for UK food, farming and rural communities of the important new policy directions.
The purpose of the Centre, stated in the Appeal document, was to offer "To agriculture and industry...research and investigation programmes, opportunities for bringing together British and European farmers, business executives, politicians, administrators, scientists and academics...a point of reference for authoritative discussion about current developments in European agriculture." This Appeal, launched in 1974, raised £463K to endow the Centre's research activities.
In the subsequent decades, the CEAS enrolled a succession of Fellows, Scholars, and Research Associates to undertake research on European agriculture. And over these years, CEAS also provided funding to organise policy events of international standing, to assist PhD students to participate in international academic events and to enable academics to be involved actively in the European Association of Agricultural Economists (EAAE).
Following the changes in the emphasis of the EU Common Agricultural Policy and consumer concerns, in 2000 CEAS was renamed the Centre for European Agri-Environmental Studies. Since 2006, CEAS has been a Centre of the University of Kent.
CEAS has been run under the Hon Directorship of academics with an international profile in the area of agri-environmental studies. The current Director is Prof Sophia Davidova, Reader in European Agricultural Policy, School of Economics.
Most recently, CEAS has been awarded a three-year AGRICOLA Club MPhil/PhD scholarship (2009-2012) for research in the area of agriculture, food, environment and development.
Prof Sophia Davidova, Professor of Agricultural Economics
Dr Diogo Souza Monteiro, Kent Business School
Recent and currently funded research includes:
- An integrated risk-based approach to the control of Salmonella in the UK pig farms (DEFRA) Designing and implementing large-scale experiments in land (RELU)
- Econometrics approaches for the food campaign analysis: the case of the 5 a day campaign and the salt campaign (FSA)
- Impact of decoupling and modulation on the enlarged EU (EU FP6)
- Overcoming market and technical obstacles to alternative pest management in arable systems (RELU)
- Structural change in agriculture and rural livelihoods (EU FP6)
- Comparative analysis of factor markets for agriculture across the Member States (EU FP7)
Important activities of the CEAS are to disseminate research results to the policy community and to influence thinking about the future of food and agri-environmental policy in the UK and Europe. To this end, members of CEAS have been members of advisory committees in different institutions, professional associations and executive committees:
- Davidova, S.: EU-DG Agriculture and Rural Development, European Network for Rural Development, EAAE, EuroChoices, UK Agricultural Economics Society President 2011-2012
- Fraser, R.: FSA, DEFRA, Science Advisory Council, UK Agricultural Economics Society
- Bailey, A.: DEFRA
Recent reports and publications:
- Davidova, S., Semi-subsistence farming in Europe: Concepts and key issues, background paper prepared for the European Network for Rural Development seminar Semi-subsistence farming in the EU: Current situation and future prospects, Sibiu, Romania, October 2010
- Davidova, S., Semi-subsistence farming in Europe: An elusive concept posing thorny policy issues, Presidential Address, 85th Annual AES conference, Warwick, April 2011
CEAS members have also contributed publications in the European policy outreach journal EuroChoices:
- Fraser, I. and Fraser, R., Targeting monitoring resources to enhance the effectiveness of the CAP EuroChoices 4(3):22-27 (2005)
- Davidova, S. (with Gorton, M.), Farm performance, direct payments and EU enlargement EuroChoices 3(1):32-36 (2004)
- Davidova S. (with Blandford, D. and Boisvert, R.), Infrastructure and rural development: US and EU perspectives EuroChoices 7(1):52-38 (2008)
Workshops and conferences
- Regional Trade Agreements: New developments and expectations
A one-day policy conference, 24 June 2011
- Small farms: Decline or Persistence?
111th Seminar of the European Association of Agricultural Economists and International Association of Agricultural Economists organised by CEAS, 26-27 June 2009
- The "Food Crisis" of 2008: Lessons for the Future
A one-day policy conference, October 2008
- Tax and Tax Concessions - The Hidden Support System for Agriculture?
A workshop on the treatment of agriculture in national tax and social security systems, and their implications, June 2007
- Agricultural Trade and Policy Reform: Where is the Action?
A workshop on the current state of multilateral, bilateral and unilateral policy discussions and their implications, November 2006