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W. P. Carey School of Business to offer a Ph.D. concentration in Agribusiness

January 09, 2006

MESA, AZ -- More than 20 percent of total employment in the U.S. economy is either directly or indirectly related to agribusiness in the United States. Despite its size and importance, agribusinesses of all types are at the mercy of weather, global commodity markets and consumer whims, so the industry as a whole tends to be more volatile than others.

The faculty in the Arizona State University Morrison School of Agribusiness and Resource Management and the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University understand the many facets of business and have partnered to offer an agribusiness concentration as part of the W. P. Carey School's Ph.D. in Business Administration program, effective fall 2006.

The program is designed to help prepare future professors of business administration in the area of agribusiness. Agribusiness is a combined application of theory and quantitative methods in economics, finance, marketing and management to issues involved in the production, distribution and marketing of food.

"Agribusiness Ph.D. students will study topics such as consumer behavior in food markets, strategic marketing by food retailers, supply chain management, risk management, financial derivatives, as well as international agricultural trade, policy and global finance," said Timothy Richards, ASU Power Distinguished Professor of Agribusiness and chair of the school's curriculum committee.

The addition of agribusiness brings the total concentrations offered in the W. P. Carey School's doctoral program to seven, a program ranked by Financial Times as the 21st in the world and 15th among all U.S. programs.

"The agribusiness program curriculum is designed to allow flexibility so each student can create a program of study that combines the best both schools have to offer. The result will be a high level of research competency targeted toward each student's respective area of interest," said Richards.

Bachelor's and master's degrees have been the primary focus in the Morrison School for nearly five decades. This agribusiness concentration will be the first doctoral-level program to be offered by the Morrison School.

"As part of the W. P. Carey School Ph.D. program, the agribusiness concentration immediately becomes the best of its kind in the country. Nowhere else can students find the same combination of rigor and relevance in an agribusiness doctoral program," said Richards.

Prospective students can apply for fall 2006 admission by visiting

For admission information, contact the W. P. Carey School of Business at (480) 965-3368 or by e-mail at