2022 NAREA Post-Conference Workshop

June 14-15, 2022


Issues of Land Succession, Social Equity, and Environmental Justice Affecting Agriculture

Workshop Coordinators: J. Wesley Burnett and Clayton Michaud, ERS USDA

Workshop sponsor: Economic Research Service, USDA



On July 29, 2021, President Biden’s administration announced it was investing $67 million to help with heirs’ property, a legal term for family land inherited without a will or legal documentation of ownership. Historically, it has been challenging for heirs to benefit from US Department of Agriculture programs due to the belief that they cannot get a farm number without proof of ownership or control of land.  Heirs’ property was recently recognized by the US Department of Agriculture as a problem that disproportionally affects underserved communities, and the newly proposed Heirs’ Property Relending Program is part of a larger effort to advance racial equity and support populations that have been historically discriminated against.



Thomas Mitchell, 2020 McArthur Fellow and Professor of Law at Texas A&M, will give the keynote address. A complementary meal will be provided with this event. Thomas Mitchell was one of the original drafters of the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act, a proposed legal reform that helps reduce the burdens associated with heirs’ property.



In line with the federal government’s initiatives, the workshop calls for paper submissions that broadly address issues associated with economic equity and social justice related to the following topics (not an exhaustive list)


  • Agricultural or forestry working lands
  • Agriculture on the urban fringe
  • Land valuation
  • Environmental/climate justice
  • Land or resource succession


Submissions must pertain to historically underserved communities, and we particularly encourage papers that address heirs’ property. Economic history and rural sociology papers are welcome as well.   


We will begin accepting abstract submissions in early February.  All accepted papers will receive a stipend to help offset domestic travel costs. Provided available space in Agricultural and Resource Economics Review (hyperlink), NAREA’s flagship journal, all submissions will be considered for an expedited review process of a workshop-themed special issue of the journal.


For additional information please contact J. Wesley Burnett and Clayton Michaud.

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