Sheila Olmstead is a Professor at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin (UT), a University Fellow at Resources for the Future (RFF) in Washington, DC, and a Senior Fellow at the Property and Environment Research Center in Bozeman, MT. From 2016-2017, she served as the Senior Economist for Energy and the Environment at the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. Before joining UT in 2013, Olmstead was a Senior Fellow (2013) and Fellow (2010-13) at RFF, as well as Associate Professor (2007-10) and Assistant Professor (2002-07) of Environmental Economics at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Olmstead has served as Vice President and a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists. She is currently an Editor of the Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, and in the past has served as Associate Editor of Water Resources Research, Co-editor of Environmental and Resource Economics, Book Review Editor of Water Economics and Policy, and Editorial Council member for the Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists. She holds a PhD in Public Policy from Harvard University (2002), a Masters in Public Affairs from the University of Texas at Austin (1996), and a BA from the University of Virginia (1992).
Olmstead is an environmental and resource economist. Her current and recent research projects focus on adaptation to the water resource implications of climate change, economic valuation of reductions in nutrient pollution in urban coastal areas, the impact of drought on global economic activity, environmental impacts of unconventional oil and gas development, the influence of federal fire suppression policy on land development in the American West, and free-riding in dam placement and water withdrawals in international river basins.
- PhD, Public Policy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, 2002
- MA in public affairs, Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin, 1996
- BA, Political and Social Thought, with High Distinction, University of Virginia, 1992