University Distinguished Professor



Edward B. Barbier is a University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Economics, Colorado State University and a Senior Scholar in the School of Global Environmental Sustainability. His main expertise is natural resource and development economics as well as the interface between economics and ecology.  He has consulted for a variety of national, international and non-governmental agencies, including many UN organizations, the World Bank and the OECD. He has authored over 300 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters, written or edited 24 books, and published in popular journals. Barbier is a Fellow of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists and is a highly cited scholar on global environmental and sustainability issues. Professor Barbier’s latest book is The Water Paradox: Overcoming the Global Crisis in Water Management.  Yale University Press, New Haven and London.



Selected recent publications (see CV for a full list):

Barbier, E.B. 2019. Natural Resources and Economic Development, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge and New York, 2nd edition.

Barbier, E.B. 2019. The Water Paradox: Overcoming the Global Crisis in Water Management.  Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 270 pp,

Barbier, E.B. and J.P. Hochard. 2019. “Poverty-Environment Traps.” Environmental and Resource Economics 74(3):1239-1271.

Barbier, E.B. and J.C. Burgess. 2019. “Scarcity and Safe Operating Spaces: The Example of Natural Forests” Environmental and Resource Economics 74(3):1077-1099.

Barbier, E.B. and J.C. Burgess. 2019. “Sustainable Development Goal Indicators: Analyzing Trade-offs and Complementarities.” World Development 122:295-305.

Hochard, J.P., S. Hamilton and E.B. Barbier. 2019. “Mangroves shelter coastal economic activity from cyclones.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 116(25):1232-1237.

Lee, S.Y., S. Hamilton, E.B. Barbier, J. Primavera and R.R. Lewis III. 2019. “Better restoration policies are needed to conserve mangrove ecosystems.” Nature Ecology & Evolution 3:870-872

Barbier, E.B. 2019. “The concept of natural capital.” Oxford Review of Economic Policy 35(1):14-36.

Curnick, D.J.. N. Pettorelli, A.A. Amir, T. Balke, E.B. Barbier, S. Crooks, F. Dahdouh-Guebas, C. Duncan, C. Endsor, D.A. Friess, A. Quarto, M. Zimmer, S.Y. Lee. 2019. “The value of small mangrove patches.” Science 363(6424):239.

Sterner, T., E.B. Barbier, I. Bateman, I. van den Bijgaart, A.-S. Crépin, O. Edenhofer, C. Fisher, W. Habla, J. Hassler, O. Johnansson-Stenman, A. Lange, S. Polasky, J. Rockström, H.G. Smith, W. Steffen, G. Wagner, J.E. Wilen, F. Alpizar, C. Azar, D. Carless, C. Chávez, J. Coria, G. Engström, S.C. Jagers, G. Köhlin, A. Löfgren, H. Pleijel and A. Robinson. 2019. “Policy design for the Anthropocene.” Nature Sustainability 2(1):14-21.

Barbier, E.B. 2019. “How to make the next Green New Deal work.” Nature 565:6.

Barbier, E.B. and Jacob P. Hochard. 2018. “Land Degradation and Poverty.” Nature Sustainability 1(11): 623–631.

Barbier, E.B., J.C. Burgess and T.J. Dean. 2018. “Response – Conservation accord.” Science 360 (6394): 1196-1197.

Barbier, E.B., J.C. Burgess and T.J. Dean. 2018. “How to pay for saving biodiversity.” Science 360 (6388): 486-488.

Barbier, E.B. and J.P. Hochard. 2018. “The Impacts of Climate Change on the Poor in Disadvantaged Regions” Review of Environmental Economics and Policy 12(1):26-47.

Barbier, E.B. M. Czajkowski and N. Hanley. 2017. “Is the income elasticity of the willingness to pay for pollution control constant?” Environmental and Resource Economics 68:663-682.

Carrasco, L.R., T.P.L. Nghiem, Z. Chen, E.B. Barbier. 2017. “Unsustainable development pathways caused by tropical deforestation.” Science Advances 3(7), e1602602

Hungate, B.A. E.B. Barbier, A.W. Ando, S.P. Marks, P.B. Reich, N. van Gestel, G.D. Tilman, J.M.H. Knops, D.U. Hooper, B.J. Butterfield and B.J. Cardinale. 2017. “The economic value of grassland species for carbon storage.” Science Advances 3(4), e1601880.

Moreno-Mateos, D., E.B. Barbier, P. Jones, H. Jones, J. Aronson, J. López-López, M. McCrackin, P. Meli, D. Montoya, and J. Rey Benayas. 2017. "Anthropogenic ecosystem disturbance and the recovery debt". Nature Communications 8:14163, doi:10.1038/ncomms14163.

Barbier, E.B. 2017. “Natural Capital and Wealth in the 21st Century.” Eastern Economic Journal 43(3):391-405.

Barbier, E.B. 2016. “Is Green Growth Relevant for Poor Economies?” Resource and Energy Economics 45:178-191.

Barbier, E.B., R.E. López and J.P. Hochard. 2016. "Debt, Poverty and Resource Management in a Rural Smallholder Economy." Environmental and Resource Economics 63:411-427. 2017 EAERE Award for outstanding publication in the journal Environmental and Resource Economics.

Barbier, E.B. 2015. “Hurricane Katrina’s lessons for the world.” Nature 524:285-287

Barbier, E.B. 2014. “Account for depreciation of natural capital.” Nature 515:32-33.

Barbier, E.B. 2010. "Poverty, development, and environment." Environment and Development Economics 15:635-660. Most read article (#1) in the journal.


  • ECON 792E: Natural Resources and Economic Development

    This course focuses on a key paradox of modern economic development: Why is it that, despite the importance of natural capital for sustainable economic development, increasing economic dependence on natural resource exploitation appears to be a hindrance to growth and development in today’s low and middle-income economies? To address is paradox this course focuses on the role of natural resources in economic development of developing countries, covering both macro-economic and micro-economic aspects of this relationship. It is designed as a graduate-level seminar course, and aims to give students a sense of current theories, debates, historical perspectives and methodologies concerning natural resources and economic development.