Today @ Colorado State has been replaced by SOURCE. This site exists as an archive of Today @ Colorado State stories between January 1, 2009 and September 8, 2014.

Research / Discovery

Interdisciplinary Water Resources Seminar April 17

April 10, 2013

This week's topic: The joint impact of drought conditions and media coverage on the Colorado rafting industry.

Mark Eiswerth

The topic of the April 17 Interdiscilinary Water Resources Seminar will be "The Joint Impact of Drought Conditions and Media Coverage on the Colorado Rafting Industry," presented by Mark Eiswerth, professor of environmental and natural resource economics at the University of Northern Colorado. The seminar will be held in Lory Student Center Room 211E, noon-1 p.m., as part of the semester-long series.

 Decreased instream flows are thought to negatively impact river recreation such as whitewater rafting. However, runoff declines often are accompanied by events including high temperatures, wildfires, and associated media coverage. Very few studies have examined the impact of any of these factors, and none have disentangled their influence.

Eiswerth's team conducted regression analysis using data from the Arkansas River in Colorado and found that reduced flows usually decrease the quantity of whitewater rafting. More important, negative media coverage of wildfires appears to have adverse impacts on rafting tourism after controlling for actual instream flows and weather.

Eiswerth's main recent areas of research include water resource economics and the economics of invasive species. In previous academic positions, he has served as a research assistant professor and Cooperative Extension state specialist at the University of Nevada – Reno and an associate professor and Cooperative Extension state specialist at the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater. He earned a B.A. in economics at Colorado College and a Ph.D. in economics at the University of Maryland.

The IWRS series is sponsored by the CSU Water Center, USDA-ARS, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Forest and Rangeland Stewardship, and The School for Global Environmental Sustainability. The entire spring seminar schedule can be viewed at

For more informaiton, contact Reagan Waskom at


Contact: Nancy Grice
Phone: 970-491-6308