Dr Di Zeng

Dr Di Zeng
 Org Unit Centre for Global Food and Resources
 Email di.zeng@adelaide.edu.au
 Telephone +61 8 8313 6226
 Location Floor/Room 6 24 ,  Nexus 10 Tower ,   North Terrace
  • Biography/ Background

    Di is an applied economist with research experience in agricultural development, food and health economics, and natural resource management. His previous work addresses issues in Sub-Saharan Africa, East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the United States. His research aims to disentangle the complicated mechanisms linking food, health, natural resources and economic development from both theoretical and empirical perspectives.

    Before joining the Centre for Global Food and Resources, Di has worked extensively with CGIAR centres in Africa and Europe as well as government agencies in the United States. His work has been funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, and several state government agencies in the United States. He has taught advanced impact evaluation methods to doctoral-level economists from several CGIAR centres.

    Di's current research topics include:

    • Agricultural development and welfare outcomes in developing countries
    • Food access, food choice and health consequences
    • Mechanisms generating and related to health disparities
    • Natural resource management with economic-ecological tradeoffs
  • Qualifications

    PhD, Virginia Tech (2014)

  • Research Interests

    • Agricultural development
    • Food and health economics
    • Natural resource management
    • Impact evaluation in social sciences


  • Publications

    Book chapters and reports  

    • Zeng, D., Alwang, J., Norton, G.W., Shiferaw, B., Jaleta, M., Yirga, C. 2015. Maize technologies and rural poverty reduction in Ethiopia. Chapter 15 in T. Walker and J. Alwang (Eds.), Crop Improvement, Adoption, and impact of Improved Varieties in Food Crops in Sub-Saharan Africa. UK: CABI Publishing.
    • Zeng, D., Alwang, J., Norton, G.W., Shiferaw, B., Jaleta, M., Yirga, C. 2014. Improved Maize Varieties and Poverty in Rural Ethiopia (Green Cover Report). CGIAR, Rome, Italy.
    • Zeng, D., Mills, B.F., and Alwang, J. 2011. Health Inequality in Virginia: A Technical Report for the 2011 Health Equity Report. Virginia Department of Health, Richmond, VA.

    Refereed journal articles (since 2015)

    • Chen, X., Zeng, D., Zhang, H., Kang, C. Farm expansion under credit constraint: evidence from commercial rice farmers in Guangxi, China. International Food and Agribusiness Management Review. Forthcoming. 
    • Rupa, J., Umberger, W.J., Zeng, D.  2019. Does food market modernization lead to improved dietary diversity and diet quality for urban Vietnamese households? Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics. 63(3): 499-520. 
    • Zeng, D., Thomsen, M.R., Nayga, Bennett, J.L. 2019. Supermarket Access and Childhood Bodyweight: Evidence from Store Openings and Closings. Economics and Human Biology 33: 78-88. 
    • Zeng, D., Thomsen, M.R., Nayga, R.M. Jr., Rouse, H.L. 2019. Neighbourhood convenience stores and childhood weight outcomes: An instrumental variable approach. Applied Economics 51(3): 288-302.
    • Chen, X., Zeng, D., Xu, Y., Fan, X. 2018. Perceptions, risk attitude and organic fertilizer investment: Evidence from rice and banana farmers in Guangxi, China. Sustainability 10(10): 3715. 
    • Zeng, D., Alwang, J., Norton, G.W., Shiferaw, B., Jaleta, M., Yirga, C. 2018. Land ownership and technology adoption revisited: Improved maize varieties in Ethiopia. Land Use Policy 72: 270-279. 
    • Huang, Z., Xu, Y.,  Zeng, D., Wang, C., Wang, J. 2018. One size fits all? Contract farming among broiler producers in China. Journal of Integrative Agriculture 17(2): 473-482.  
    • Kassie, M., Marenya, P., Tessema, Y., Jaleta, M., Zeng, D., Erenstein, O., Rahut, D.B. 2018. Measuring farm and market level economic impacts of improved maize production technologies in Ethiopia: Evidence from panel data. Journal of Agricultural Economics 69: 76-95. 
    • Zeng, D., Alwang, J., Norton, G.W., Shiferaw, B., Jaleta, M., Yirga, C. 2017. Agricultural technology adoption and child nutrition enhancement: Improved maize varieties in Ethiopia. Agricultural Economics 48: 573-586.
    • Zeng, D., Thomsen, M.R., Nayga, R.M. Jr., Rouse, H.L. 2016. Middle school transition and bodyweight outcomes: Evidence from Arkansas public schoolchildren. Economics and Human Biology 21: 64-74.
    • Huang, Z., Zeng, D., Wang, J. 2016. Factors affecting Chinese broiler farmers’ main preventive practices in response to highly pathogenic avian influenza. Preventive Veterinary Medicine 134: 153-159.
    • Zeng, D., You, W., Mills, B.F., Alwang, J., Royster, M., Anson-Dwamena, R. 2015. A closer look at the rural-urban health disparities: Insights from four major diseases in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Social Science & Medicine 140: 62-68.
    • Zeng, D., Alwang, J., Norton, G.W., Shiferaw, B., Jaleta, M., Yirga, C. 2015. Ex-post impacts of improved maize varieties on poverty in rural Ethiopia. Agricultural Economics 46: 515-526.
    • Huang, W., Zeng, D., Zhou, S. 2015. Welfare impacts of modern peanut technologies in China. Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture 54(3): 219-236.


  • Professional Associations

    Agricultural & Applied Economic Association (AAEA)

    Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society (AARES)

    Agricultural Economics Society (AES)

    International Association of Agricultural Economists (IAAE)

    American Economic Association (AEA)

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Entry last updated: Thursday, 28 Nov 2019

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