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Randy T Simmons

Randy T Simmons

Charles G. Koch Professor of Political Economy
Departments: Economics and Finance
Programs: Koch Scholars
Location:  Business 516
Office Phone:  435.797.1310
Fax:  435.797.2701

Education

Ph.D., Political Science, University of Oregon, 1980 Emphasis: Public Choice
MA, Political Science, University of Oregon, 1978
BS, Political Science, Utah State University, 1975

Related Huntsman News Articles

Professor Randy Simmons on Carbon Taxes in National Journal’s Blog (The Huntsman Post - March 2013)
Huntsman Professors Have Written Some Books You Should Know About (Huntsman Alumni Magazine - Fall 2012)
USU Professor Testifies About Impact of Designated Wilderness Areas (The Huntsman Post - December 2011)

Biography

Randy T. Simmons emphasizes the importance of economic reasoning to better understand public policy. He believes the study of politics cannot be separated from the study of markets and uses this framework to evaluate environmental and natural resource policies. The real challenge of the social process, as he sees it, is to design institutions that have outcomes that closely represent the wishes of individuals. He believes that markets are often the best way to achieve this objective when they are insulated from political influence. His core filed in political science is Public Choice.

Simmons current environmental research focuses on the Endangered Species Act. He stresses that threatened and endangered species are not simply a biological problem but a social problem, since the threat to their existence is a consequence of economic and political processes. Unfortunately, the solutions presented in the Endangered Species Act have been both costly and ineffective. He believes that positive incentives are more effective than penalties. Instead of creating a burden for private property owners, Simmons proposes measures to reward owners who conserve species and habitat. He also favors decentralizing and depoliticizing conservation programs, because twenty competing answers are better than one, especially when no one knows which is the right answer. He argues this case in is book Endangered Species: Critical Thinking About Environmental Issues and in his soon-to-be finished book manuscript Political Ecology: Politics, Economics and the Endangered Species Act.

His other books include Beyond Politics: Markets, Welfare and the Failure of Bureaucracy, a primer on public choice economics co-authored with William Mitchell, and The Political Economy of Customs and Culture: Informal Solutions to the Commons Problems, co-edited with Terry Anderson. Simmons has also written widely on the conservation of African elephants.

Simmons received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Oregon in 1980. He is currently professor of political science at Utah State University, where he has been honored three times by the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences as researcher of the year. Also at Utah State University, he is the director of the Institute of Political Economy. Simmons is a senior scholar with the Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C. and a Senior Fellow at the Property and Environment Research Center, Bozeman, MT.

He makes his home in Providence, Utah, where he served six years on the city council and is now mayor. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Utah League of Cities and Towns and is a member of the Utah Governor's Privatization Commission. He is writing a book on his experiences in local government. In his spare time, Simmons enjoys llamapacking with his wife and three children and boating on Lake Powell.

Check his class blog at http://www.coasecoloredglasses.com/.

Name Title Phone Location Email
Blau, Ben Associate Professor 435.797.2340 Business 603 ben.blau@usu.edu
Bowles, Tyler Professor and Head, MSE & MSFE Graduate Advisor 435.797.2378 Business 611 tyler.bowles@usu.edu
Brough, Tyler Assistant Professor 435.797.2369 Business 605 tyler.brough@usu.edu
Caliendo, Frank Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, and Associate Professor 435.797.2963 Business 619 frank.caliendo@usu.edu
DeLisle, R. Jared Assistant Professor of Finance 435.797.0885 Business 612 jared.delisle@usu.edu
Fawson, Christopher Vernon Maughan Buehler and MaRee C. Buehler Professor 435.797.2320 Business 514 chris.fawson@usu.edu
Feigenbaum, James Associate Professor 435.797.2316 Business 620 J.Feigen@aggiemail.usu.edu
Findley, T. Scott Assistant Professor 435.797.2371 Business 616 tscott.findley@usu.edu
Fjeldsted, Paul Senior Lecturer 435.797.2172 Business 602 paul.fjeldsted@usu.edu
Gilbert, John Professor 435.797.2314 Business 604 jgilbert@usu.edu
Glover, Terry Professor 435.797.2297 Business 607 terry.glover@usu.edu
Gorry, Aspen Assistant Professor 435.797.2397 Business 610 aspen.gorry@usu.edu
Gorry, Devon Assistant Professor 435.797.9098 Business 606 devon.gorry@usu.edu
Hunter, Maegan Business Assistant I 435.797.2133 Business 110 maegan.hunter@usu.edu
Israelsen, Dwight Director – Instruction, China Cooperative Academic Programs and Professor of Economics 435.797.2298 Business 608 dwight.israelsen@usu.edu
Lai, Sheila Director - Operations, China Cooperative Academic Programs and Clinical Assistant Professor 435.797.3019 Business 506 sheila.lai@usu.edu
Malko, Robert Professor NA NA jrmalko@comcast.net
Peterson, Shannon Clinical Assistant Professor of Economics & Co-Director of Huntsman Scholars Program 435.797.3966 Business 309 shannon.peterson@usu.edu
Romrell, Doug Lecturer     dougromrell@gmail.com
Routledge, Teri Sr. Staff Assistant 435.797.2310 Business 615 teri.routledge@usu.edu
Shughart II, William F. J. Fish Smith Professor in Public Choice 435.797.1571 Business 510 william.shughart@usu.edu
Simmons, Randy T Charles G. Koch Professor of Political Economy 435.797.1310 Business 516 randy.simmons@usu.edu
Smith, Jason Assistant Professor 435.797.2363 Business 614 jason.smith@usu.edu
Sorenson, Donette Coordinator of Programs 435.797.2989 Business 110 donette.sorenson@usu.edu
Stephens, Alan Associate Professor 435.797.2367 Business 508 alan.stephens@usu.edu
Stowell, David Adjunct Professor     d-stowell@kellogg.northwestern.edu
Whitby, Ryan Assistant Professor 435.797.9495 Business 618 ryan.whitby@usu.edu