Martin D. Smith

Martin D. Smith

Professor in the Department of Economics

External Address: 
9 Circuit Drive, Grainger Hall 4116, Durham, NC 27708
Internal Office Address: 
Box 90328, Durham, NC 27708-0328
(919) 613-8028

Smith studies the economics of the oceans, including fisheries, marine ecosystems, seafood markets, and coastal climate adaptation. He has written on a range of policy-relevant topics, including economics of marine reserves, seasonal closures in fisheries, ecosystem-based management, catch shares, nutrient pollution, aquaculture, genetically modified foods, the global seafood trade, organic agriculture, coastal property markets, and coastal responses to climate change. He is best known for identifying unintended consequences of marine and coastal policies that ignore human behavioral feedbacks. Smith’s methodological interests span micro-econometrics, optimal control theory, time series analysis, and numerical modeling of coupled human-natural systems. Smith’s published work appears in The American Economic Review, Nature, Science, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, the Review of Economics and Statistics, and a number of other scholarly journals that span environmental economics, fisheries science, marine policy, ecology, and the geo-sciences. Smith has received national and international awards, including the Quality of Research Discovery from the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, Outstanding Article in Marine Resource Economics, and an Aldo Leopold Leadership Fellowship. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis, and the Research Council of Norway. Smith has served as Editor-in-Chief of the journal Marine Resource Economics, Co-Editor of the Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, and Co-Editor of the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management. He served as a member of the Scientific and Statistical Committee of the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council and currently serves on the Ocean Studies Board of the National Academies.


  • Ph.D., University of California at Davis 2001
  • B.A., Stanford University 1992

Smith, M. D., J. Zhang, and F. C. Coleman. “Structural modeling of marine reserves with Bayesian estimation.” Marine Resource Economics 22, no. 2 (January 1, 2007): 121–36. Full Text

Liese, C., M. D. Smith, and R. A. Kramer. “Open access in a spatially delineated artisanal fishery: The case of Minahasa, Indonesia.” Environment and Development Economics 12, no. 1 (2007): 123–43. Full Text Open Access Copy

Smith, M. D., J. Zhang, and F. C. Coleman. “Effectiveness of marine reserves for large-scale fisheries management.” Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 63, no. 1 (2006): 153–64. Full Text

Smith, M. D. “State dependence and heterogeneity in fishing location choice.” Journal of Environmental Economics and Management 50, no. 2 (September 1, 2005): 319–40. Full Text

Smith, M. D., and J. E. Wilen. “Correlated Risk Preferences and Behavior of Commercial Fishermen: The Perfect Storm/Dilemma.” The Journal of Risk and Uncertainty 31, no. 1 (2005): 53–71.

Smith, M. D., and J. E. Wilen. “Heterogeneous and correlated risk preferences in commercial fishermen: The perfect storm dilemma.” Journal of Risk and Uncertainty 31, no. 1 (2005): 53–71. Full Text

Smith, M. D. “Limited-entry licensing: Insights from a duration model.” American Journal of Agricultural Economics 86, no. 3 (August 1, 2004): 605–18. Full Text

Smith, M. D., and J. E. Wilen. “Marine reserves with endogenous ports: Empirical bioeconomics of the California sea urchin fishery.” Marine Resource Economics 19, no. 1 (January 1, 2004): 85–112. Full Text