• Print
  • Email

Last Updated: 6/12/2018

Annual Agriculture Conference

On November 27, 2018, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago held a conference to explore issues surrounding the challenges, prospects, and opportunities of agricultural technology for farms and rural areas of the Midwest, with a particular focus on mechanisms for funding new technologies and their implementation. In light of the ties between farm households and off-farm income, the intersection of agricultural technology and rural economic life will play an important role in the future of the Midwest. At the conference, experts from academia, industry, and policy institutions came together to discuss developments in technologies that are shaping the future for agriculture and the Midwestern economy. The goals of the conference include understanding technological change and its effects on farming and rural communities; examining policies that affect the rate and spread of technological change; analyzing the primary influences of new technologies on the Midwest, especially for employers, health systems, and educational institutions; and considering potential ways to fund agricultural innovations and improvements, particularly given lower farm profits in recent years.

photo of karen plaut for 2018 agriculture conference
Dean Karen I. Plaut
Purdue University

As dean, Dr. Plaut is responsible for administering academic programs in the College of Agriculture, the Indiana Agricultural Experiment Station, the Purdue Cooperative Extension Service and a number of state regulatory services. In addition to her administrative role, Dr. Plaut is also Professor of Animal Sciences and has an active research program in mammary gland biology. Prior to her appointment as dean, she was Senior Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Affairs in the College of Agriculture.

Dr. Plaut received her B.S. in animal science from the University of Vermont, an M.S. in animal nutrition from Pennsylvania State University and a Ph.D. in animal science from Cornell University. Her postdoctoral studies were completed at the National Cancer Institute at NIH. Before coming to Purdue she was on faculty at the University of Vermont and Michigan State University serving as Chair of the Department of Animal Sciences at both institutions. She also spent a few years working with NASA as Lead Scientist for the International Space Station.

Tuesday, 11/27/18
9:00 AM
Welcome and Opening Remarks
David B. Oppedahl, Senior Business Economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
9:15 AM
Session I: The Role of Agricultural Technology in the Future of Midwest Farms
Keith Fuglie, Economist, Economic Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture
Jerry Flint, Global Initiatives and Sustainability Leader, Corteva Agriscience
10:45 AM
Session II: Agricultural Technology’s Effects on Rural Communities
Douglas J. Reinemann, Professor and Associate Dean for Outreach and Extension, University of Wisconsin-Madison
John Mann, Assistant Professor, Michigan State University
12:00 PM
Keynote and Lunch
Leslie McGranahan, Vice President and Director of Regional Research, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
Karen I. Plaut, Glenn W. Sample Dean of Agriculture, Purdue University
1:30 PM
Session III: The Role of Broadband for Agricultural Technologies and the Rural Economy of the Midwest
Brian E. Whitacre, Professor and Extension Economist, Oklahoma State University
Matt Johnson, Vice President of Governmental Policy, Shawnee Communications
2:30 PM
Session IV: Panel discussion – How will new agricultural technologies be implemented and funded?
Cortney Cowley, Economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, Omaha Branch
Edwin Elfmann, Senior Vice President, Agricultural and Rural Banking Policy, American Bankers Association
Tanner Ehmke, Manager, Knowledge Exchange Division, CoBank
Douglas Wilson, State Director, Rural Development Illinois, U.S. Department of Agriculture
4:00 PM
Having trouble accessing something on this page? Please send us an email and we will get back to you as quickly as we can.

Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, 230 South LaSalle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60604-1413, USA. Tel. (312) 322-5322

Copyright © 2023. All rights reserved.

Please review our Privacy Policy | Legal Notices