Mary Riddel

Professor, Economics
Expertise: Environmental economics , Behavioral economics, Urban and regional economics, Forecasting


Mary Riddel is a professor of economics in the Lee Business School at UNLV. She came to UNLV in 1999 as an assistant professor and became a full professor in 2011. She has served as associate director and interim director of the Center for Business and Economic Research. She was named a Beam Research Scholar in the Lee Business School in 2010. Prior to joining UNLV, Riddel worked as the senior economist for the Economic Forecast Project at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Riddel has published in a broad range of fields including statistics, environmental and behavioral economics, housing, and natural resource law. She has studied the public’s support for the proposed Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository, improving water quality, biodiversity, and open space programs.

Riddel’s recent research explores the economics of risk and uncertainty from a behavioral perspective. She is working on models that will help researchers understand why people engage in risky activities and design better ways to communicate health and safety risks to the public. Her publications have appeared in numerous journals including: the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Risk Analysis, Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Journal of Statistical Computation and Simulation, Land Economics, The Journal of Housing Economics and the Natural Resources Journal.

Riddel has consulted on projects locally and nationally, including the economic impact of solar and other renewable technologies, the proposed high-speed train to Las Vegas, and the proposed Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Storage Facility. Her recent consulting work addresses how people make decisions to consume risky products.


  • B.A., Economics, University of Colorado, Boulder
  • M.S., Statistics, Colorado State University
  • Ph.D., Agricultural and Resource Economics, Colorado State University

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business development, economy, environment, Nevada

Mary Riddel In The News

Las Vegas Review Journal
January 16, 2018
When CES kicked off Tuesday morning, it was the second consecutive CES without any women in top keynote slots — those addressing the entire conference.
KSNV-TV: News 3
February 28, 2017
The highly contested concept plan to build as many as 5,000 homes near Red Rock is one step closer to reality, by there are still legal battles ahead.
Las Vegas Review Journal
September 15, 2016
Lifelong feminist Mary Riddel recalls her early days on college campuses: the “big deal” of feminism at Michigan in the ‘70s; the popularity of Anti-Apartheid demonstrations; and her days at the University of Colorado in Boulder, where political activist Ward Churchill once presided.
Las Vegas Review Journal
June 9, 2016
It’s always a good time to contemplate your pay, especially if you’re a job-hunting woman in the U.S.

Articles Featuring Mary Riddel

Business and CommunityMay 21, 2014
Nevada is a land of strange extremes. Here's how those factors make for a strange economy, according to professor Mary Riddel.
ResearchApril 24, 2013
Why do people choose amateur auto racing over a walk in the park? New research examines link between dangerous activities and our tolerance for risking death.