HISTORY OF THE DEPARTMENT
The Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics is one of the two academic Departments that emerged from the parent Department of Agricultural Economics & Extension of the University. This becomes necessary given the current rapid changes in national development concerns and other global socio-economic changes. To meet up with these realities, it is an urgent priority to have the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics (ARE).
The parent Department has been operating two options: Agricultural Economics (1st Option) and Agricultural Extension (2nd Option) since the inception of the Federal University of Technology, Akure, in 1982. Hence, the establishment of the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics in view of the global changes and development such as in Environmental economics, Application of geographical information system (GIS), Urban agriculture, Dynamics of land use and land change; Economics of climate change, Youth-in-agriculture, Gender issues and agriculture, etc is imperative to award the Degree of Bachelor of Agricultural Technology (B.Agric.Tech) in Agricultural and Resource Economics.
It is practically impossible to cover these new developments and issues in the previous curriculum. Therefore, to meet these new areas of concern and to make the Department relevant in the face of the current global realities, the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics was established to accommodate several new courses not in the previous curriculum. The Department addresses current and future global issues, with the resultant effect of producing high profile graduates that will be in high demand within and outside Nigeria. The Department is also meant to be relevant to global academic and industrial communities and thus enhance collaboration with industry and other Universities within and outside Nigeria.
THE PROGRAMMES PHILOSOPHY
The Philosophy of the Federal University of Technology, Akure is to produce practical-oriented graduates. In line with this philosophy, the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics has as its main concern the training of graduates with broad-based knowledge of the various aspects of agriculture with a bias towards Agricultural and Resource Economics. Agricultural Economics emerged from the field of Economics over six decades ago, to take care of issue of efficient resource allocation in agriculture as well as issues related to agricultural development. The world is dynamic, so also is the scientific community. Given this dynamism, several issues relating to economics of agriculture have come up in the last one decade and such issues are of critical importance and cannot be handled within the limit of 5-year period of the degree programme of the course. These new issues and challenges are not covered under the traditional courses offered in agricultural economics. The degree programme in Agricultural and Resource Economics has been designed to address these issues and needs. This programme is need-driven and of course will produce graduates that will be of high demand locally and globally.
Graduates of the Department are exposed to the rudiments (basic) knowledge of solving real life socio-economic problems associated with sustainable agricultural production and rural development. Different quantitative techniques of addressing agricultural problems with regards to micro and macro-economic theories, project planning and appraisal, natural resource economics, marketing problems, managerial economics, environmental economics, applied statistics and farm management are taught. The programme also provides opportunities for visits by local farmers to the teaching and research farm of the University for mutual and beneficial interaction. Through the programme, there are collaborations with the Federal and State Governments, Parastatals, Agencies and other organizations in the areas of research in agricultural production. The graduates of the programmme are suitable for employment in all areas of human endeavours, including financial institutions, academic institutions, ministries, consultancies, among other.
OBJECTIVES OF THE PROGRAMME
The objectives of the degree programme are to:
a. train students in the field of agricultural and resource economics, with emphasis on the application of economic principles to the management of agricultural and allied business;
b. train students in basic research techniques in agricultural and resource economics;
c. prepare students for self and paid employment in all aspects of agriculture and allied businesses;
d. provide services in the Economics of Science and Technology of Agriculture that will be of practical use to farmers, policymakers, government and international community and
e. collaborate with communities, Local, State and Federal Governments, parastatals, as well as other National and multinational agencies in the areas of research, consultancy and advisory services.