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Dr. Lars J. Olson


2113 Symons Hall 7998 Regents Drive College Park, Maryland 20742-5535


  • Natural Resource and Environmental Economics
  • Economics of Invasive Species
  • Growth Theory and Economic Dynamics
  • Economics of Uncertainty



B.A. 1981, Eckerd College: Mathematics and Economics
M.A. 1985, Cornell University: Economics
Ph.D. 1988, Cornell University: Economics

Professional Work

Editorial service:

Associate Editor, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 1996-1999.

Editorial Council, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 1994-1995, 2001-2004.

Referee for:

Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, American Economic Review, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Annals of Regional Science, Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, California Agriculture, Canadian Journal of Economics, Choices, Contemporary Policy Issues, Ecological Economics, Econometrica, Economic Theory, Environmental and Resource Economics, Environmental Economics and Policy Studies, European Economic Review, European Review of Agricultural Economics, Finnish Economic Papers, International Economic Journal, International Economic Review, Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Journal of Agricultural, Biological and Environmental Statistics, Journal of Applied Ecology, Journal of Applied Econometrics, Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Journal of Economic Theory, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Journal of Futures Markets, Journal of Political Economy, Journal of Population Ecology, Journal of Public Economics, Journal of the American Statistical Association, Natural Resource Modeling, Resource and Energy Economics, Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Southern Economic Journal, Water Resources Research

Grant reviewing:

Binational Agricultural Research and Development Fund (BARD)

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC)

Maryland Department of Natural Resources

National Institutes for Water Resources/USGS National Competitive Grant Program

National Sea Grant College Program

The Bank of Sweden Tercentenary Foundation

UC Toxic Substances Program (review panel chair)

UC Water Resources Center

USDA, ERS, Program of Research on the Economics of Invasive Species Management


Areas of Interest: 

  • Natural Resource and Environmental Economics
  • Economics of Invasive Species
  • Growth Theory and Economic Dynamics
  • Economics of Uncertainty


Selected Publications:

In press, Holzer, J. and L.J. Olson, Precautionary Buffers and Stochastic Dependence in Environmental Policy, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management.

2020, Lichtenberg, E. and L.J. Olson, Tariffs and the Risk of Invasive Pest Introductions in Commodity Imports: Theory and Empirical Evidence, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management v101, 102321.

2018, Lichtenberg, E. and L.J. Olson, The Fruit and Vegetable Import Pathway for Potential Invasive Pest Arrivals, PLoS ONE 13(2): e0192280. Available online at:

Haack, R.A., K.O. Britton, E.G. Brockerhoff, J.F. Cavey, L.J. Garrett, M. Kimberley, F. Lowenstein, A. Nuding, L.J. Olson, J. Turner, K.N. Vasilaky. 2014. Effectiveness of the International Phytosanitary Standard ISPM No. 15 on Reducing Wood Borer Infestation Rates in Wood Packaging Material Entering the United StatesPLOS ONE, 9(5). Available online at:

Olson, L.J. and S. Roy. 2010. Dynamic Sanitary and Phytosanitary Trade Policy, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management (60)1, 21-30. Available online at:

Olson, L.J. and S. Roy. 2008. Controlling a Biological Invasion: A Non-Classical Dynamic Economic Model, Economic Theory. 36, 453-69.  Available free online.

Olson, L.J. 2006. The Economics of Terrestrial Invasive Species: A Review of the Literature. Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, 35(1), 178-194.

Olson, L.J. and S. Roy. 2006. Theory of Stochastic Optimal Economic Growth, in Handbook of Economic Growth - Volume 1: The Discrete Time Case (ed. by. C. Le Van, R. Dana, T. Mitra and K. Nishimura). Springer. 297-335.

Olson, L.J. and S. Roy. 2005. On Prevention and Control of an Uncertain Biological Invasion, Review of Agricultural Economics, 27(3), 491-97.

Bramoulle, Y. and L.J. Olson. 2005. Allocation of Pollution Abatement Under Learning by Doing, Journal of Public Economics, 89(9-10), 1935-60.

Just, R.E., S. Netanyahu and L.J. Olson. 2005. Depletion of Natural Resources, Technological Uncertainty, and the Adoption of Technological Substitutes. Resource and Energy Economics, 27(2), 91-108.

Olson, L.J. and S. Roy. 2002. The Economics of Controlling a Stochastic Biological Invasion, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 84(5), 1311-1316.

Larson, C.E., L.J. Olson, and S. Sharma.  2001.  Optimal Inventory Policies When the Distribution of Demand is Not Known, Journal of Economic Theory, 101, 281-300.

Olson, L.J. and S. Roy.  2000.  Dynamic Efficiency of Conservation of Renewable Resources Under Uncertainty, Journal of Economic Theory, 95(2), 186-214.

Olson, L.J. and K.C. Knapp. 1997. Exhaustible Resource Allocation in an Overlapping Generations Economy, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 32(3):277-292.

Knapp, K.C. and L.J. Olson.  1995.  The Economics of Conjunctive Groundwater Management with Stochastic Surface SuppliesJournal of Environmental Economics and Management, 28(3), 340-356.

Nyarko, Y. and L.J. Olson.  1994.  Stochastic Growth when Utility Depends on Both Consumption and the Stock LevelEconomic Theory, 4, 791-797.

Dow, Jr., J.P. and L.J. Olson.  1992.  Irreversibility and the Behavior of Aggregate Stochastic Growth Models, Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, 16, 207-223.

Nyarko, Y. and L.J. Olson.  1991.  Stochastic Dynamic Models with Stock-Dependent Rewards, Journal of Economic Theory, 55, 161-168.

Olson, L.J.  1990.  Multivariate Decision-Making Under Risk Aversion, Journal of Economic Theory, 50: 193-203.

Olson, L.J.  1989.  Stochastic Growth with Irreversible Investment, Journal of Economic Theory, 47: 101-129.