Student research explores maritime transport of agricultural products – News & Stories



After earning a bachelor’s and master’s degree in economics from the University of Los Andes, Jimenez spent five years as a researcher in economics at the Asociación Nacional de Instituciones Financieras.

As he monitored and analyzed the impact of international trade on Colombia’s agricultural sector, Jimenez realized that the country was not capitalizing on population growth.

“People were increasing exponentially, but not agricultural production,” Jimenez explained. “I was trying to become an expert to contribute, but I needed more preparation, a more holistic perspective.”

Visiting his sister, who studied chemical engineering at Purdue, Jimenez was drawn to the agricultural economics department’s reputation for high-level applied research.

Jimenez started classes at Purdue in 2014, completed a second master’s degree, and began a doctorate in 2016 under the supervision of Russell hillberry, professor of agricultural economics.

“Shipping is essential for global supply chains, including agriculture,” Jimenez said. “Agricultural raw materials are highly dependent because they are highly marketed products. They generally have a high weight-to-value ratio, which makes other modes of transport uneconomical. “

Jimenez’s research examines international freight transport, global value chains, and trade costs. In one project, he studied the market power of carriers by measuring the margins they charge for shipping products to the United States. In another, he quantified the welfare benefits of maritime hubs and the intermediate transit that pass through them, facilitating global trade and connecting much of the world.

Jimenez recently attended the Hillberry International Agricultural Trade Course (AGEC450) and the Macroeconomic, Business and Policy Environment of the Food System Course (AGEC682). His efforts earned him the Department’s Teaching Assistant Award and a nomination for the 2020-2021 Agricultural College Graduate Student Teaching Excellence Award.

Jimenez hopes to complete his doctorate. next summer and is considering finding a research position in an international agency or private research institute in the United States or in a developing country.



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