Lori Snyder Bennear

Associate Professor of Environmental Economics and Policy

External Address: 
9 Circuit Drive, Environment Hall 4117, Durham, NC 27708
Internal Office Address: 
Box 90328, Durham, NC 27708-0328
(919) 613-8083

My research focuses on evaluating environmental policies and improving methods and techniques for conducting these evaluations. While the field of policy evaluation is a broad one, my specific niche is in bringing rigorous quantitative methods to evaluate environmental policy innovations along four dimensions.  (1) Evaluating the effectiveness of environmental policies and programs. This line of research uses statistical analysis to estimate the extent to which environmental policies such as information disclosure and management-based regulations actually improve corporate environmental performance, change household behavior, or improve individual environmental health indicators. (2) Evaluating strategic behavioral responses to non-traditional regulatory regimes. Environmental policies create incentives and in responding to these incentives, regulated entities sometimes behave strategically in ways that undermine program effectiveness.  This line of research seeks to illuminate these strategic behavioral responses and quantify the magnitude of their impact.  (3)  Assessing the distributional impacts of these new regulatory regimes. My research in this area evaluates whether innovations in regulatory policy result in uneven distribution of environmental impacts on lower income or minority communities.  (4)  Evaluating the role of program evaluation in environmental policy. My research identifies the barriers to and facilitators of increased use of evaluation in environmental policy.


  • Ph.D., Harvard University 2002
  • M.A., Yale University 1996

Smith, MD, Oglend, A, Kirkpatrick, AJ, Asche, F, Bennear, LS, Craig, JK, and Nance, JM. "Seafood prices reveal impacts of a major ecological disturbance." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 114, no. 7 (February 2017): 1512-1517. Full Text

Cunningham, S, Bennear, LS, and Smith, MD. "Spillovers in Regional Fisheries Management: Do Catch Shares Cause Leakage?." Land Economics 92, no. 2 (May 1, 2016): 344-362. Full Text Open Access Copy

Bennear, LS. "Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling: A Review of Regulatory Regimes in the United States, United Kingdom, and Norway." Review of Environmental Economics and Policy 9, no. 1 (January 1, 2015): 2-22. Full Text

Balasubramanya, S, Pfaff, A, Bennear, L, Tarozzi, A, Ahmed, KM, Schoenfeld, A, and van Geen, A. "Evolution of households' responses to the groundwater arsenic crisis in Bangladesh: information on environmental health risks can have increasing behavioral impact over time." Environment and development economics 19, no. 5 (October 2014): 631-647. Full Text

Kirkpatrick, AJ, and Bennear, LS. "Promoting clean energy investment: An empirical analysis of property assessed clean energy." Journal of Environmental Economics and Management 68, no. 2 (September 2014): 357-375. Full Text

Smith, MD, Asche, F, Bennear, LS, and Oglend, A. "Spatial-dynamics of Hypoxia and Fisheries: The Case of Gulf of Mexico Brown Shrimp." Marine Resource Economics 29, no. 2 (June 2014): 111-131. Full Text Open Access Copy

Smith, MD, Asche, F, Bennear, LS, Havice, E, Read, AJ, and Squires, D. "Will a catch share for whales improve social welfare?." Ecological applications : a publication of the Ecological Society of America 24, no. 1 (January 2014): 15-23. Full Text Open Access Copy

Bennear, LS, Lee, JM, and Taylor, LO. "Municipal rebate programs for environmental retrofits: An evaluation of additionality and cost-effectiveness." Journal of Policy Analysis and Management 32, no. 2 (2013): 350-372. Full Text

Bennear, L, Tarozzi, A, Pfaff, A, Balasubramanya, S, Ahmed, KM, and Geen, AV. "Impact of a randomized controlled trial in arsenic risk communication on household water-source choices in Bangladesh." Journal of Environmental Economics and Management 65, no. 2 (2013): 225-240. Full Text


Bennear, LS, and Coglianese, C. "Flexible Environmental Regulation." In The Oxford Handbook of U.S. Environmental Policy,edited by S Kamieniecki and M Kraft, 582-604. Oxford University Press, November 8, 2012.

Bennear, LS. "Beyond Belts and Suspenders: Promoting Private Risk Management in Offshore Drilling." In Regulatory Breakdown? The Crisis of Confidence in U.S. Regulation,edited by C Coglianese. Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012.

Bennear, LS, and Olmstead, SM. "Information Disclosure and Drinking Water Quality." In Issues of the Day: 100 Commentaries on Climate, Energy, the Environment, Transportation, and Public Health Policy, 122-123. Washington, DC: Resources for the Future Press, 2010.

Bennear, LS. "Evaluating Management-Based Regulation: A Valuable Tool in the Regulatory Tool Box?." In Leveraging the Private Sector: Management-Based Strategies for Improving Environmental Performance,edited by C Coglianese and J Nash. Washington, DC: Resources for the Future Press, 2006.

Bennear, LS, and Coglianese, C. "Program Evaluation of Environmental Policies: Toward Evidence-Based Decision Making." In Decision Making for the Environment: Social and Behavioral Science Research Priorities,edited by GD Brewer and PC Stern. Washington, DC: National Academies Press, 2005.

Bennear, LS, and Coglianese, C. Evaluating Environmental Policies..

Bennear, LS, and Dickenson, KL. "Incorporating Evaluation in the Regulatory Process”." Crisis And The Challenges Of Regulatory Design. Duke University. June 11, 2011 - June 12, 2011. 2011.

Bennear, LS, Smith, and MD, . "Success or Selection: An Economic Perspective on Fisheries Co-Management." Working Papers on the Web. (Editorial Comment)

Measuring the Effects of Hypoxia on the Gulf of Mexico Shrimp Fishery awarded by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Co-Principal Investigator). 2009 to 2014

Collaborative Research: The Impacts of the "Right to Know": Information Disclosure and Drinking Water Quality awarded by National Science Foundation (Principal Investigator). 2007 to 2010

An Integrative Investigation of the Sources and Effects of Groundwater Contamination for Local Communities awarded by Department of Agriculture (Co-Principal Investigator). 2006 to 2009

Corporate Responses to Information Disclosure awarded by Environmental Protection Agency (Co Investigator). 2006 to 2009