Tom Johnson, professor of agricultural economics at the University of Missouri, was one of two recipients of the 2012 MU Provost's Award for Leadership in International Education. The award recognize faculty who have provided outstanding leadership in strengthening MU's international dimension.
Johnson joined the MU faculty in 1997 as the Frank Miller Professor of Agricultural Economics. He accepted a joint position at the Harry S Truman School of Public Affairs after its founding.
“As a dedicated mentor of students he uses his scholarly reputation, his research projects and his international network to provide a variety of international learning and research opportunities for students, not just his advisees,” colleagues Judith Stallmann and Barton Wechsler said in Johnson’s nomination letter. “The University has benefited from his dedication to students and Dr. Johnson’s reputation had enhanced the international reputation of the University of Missouri.”
Johnson is a founding member of the MU European Union Center, now the Trans-Atlantic Center. He is also one of the founders of the International Comparative Rural Policy Studies Program (ICRPS), a consortium of approximately 10 universities in Europe, the United States, Canada and Mexico. The consortium organizes and teaches a summer graduate institute in comparative rural policy.
MU participants of the program have gone on to work at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN and the Mexican Agricultural Secretariat, and the rural development consulting firm, the Brookings Institute.
Johnson has taught or co-taught 10 graduate courses in which he “effortlessly integrates international examples,” his nomination letter said.
Johnson has colleagues at universities, government agencies and international institutions in Mexico, Scotland, Spain, Canada, Ireland, Britain, Greece, Hungry, Italy, Korea, Ukraine and South Africa. He uses these relationships to arrange research and internship opportunities for his students.
He also has served on several international advisory boards including the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, Canadian Rural Collaboration Project and Ukraine Agricultural and Rural Development Policy Project.
Johnson has made significant contributions to international research on agricultural and rural economic policy.
All MU faculty members, full-time, tenured, non-tenured and non-tenure track, regardless of departmental affiliation, who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in international education by virtue of contributions, are eligible for the award.