In memory of Alessandro Bartola

Alessandro Bartola was a professor of Economics and Agricultural Policy at the Department of Economics at the University of Agriculture of Ancona. He also taught Economics and Business Techniques at the Department of Engineering of the same University.
Born on April 29, 1940, Alessandro Bartola started to deal with economy-agriculture topics in 1964, soon after he had graduated from the Department of Economics and Commerce of Ancona. His first research experiences regarded the theory of agricultural farming and the study of its management. In the field of microeconomics, his research works deal with the analyses of investments and a study of agriculture markets through application of econometric models. The area of his research work includes his collaboration with the Ismea, where he applied, on behalf of the Ministry of Agriculture, a complete econometric model of Italian agriculture.  Having done this, he worked on the coordination of a research area of the project called Advanced Research for The Innovation of Agriculture Systems of The National Council of Research.

His second interest of research was in the analysis of the development of the department of agriculture both at a regional and national level. As a researcher at the Institute of Studies of Economical Development of the Marche region (Issem), he dealt with these topics until 60s paying special attention to the issues of sub-regional programming in the field of agriculture. The team to which he belonged produced, with years, a significant series of studies on the region of Marche and the regional development in Italy and abroad. In these researches Bartola was paying particular attention to the study and application of the models of high placement of the resources. By the end of the 60s,  these topics were further developed, although on the less theoretical level, through research works done at the University of Ancona in the editorial head-office of the socio-economical projects of some mountain Communities of the Marche region. The last research series was concerned with the analysis of agricultural policies at different levels: regional, national and community. Although the issues of agricultural policy had been present in his numerous publications from the very beginning of his research and didactical work, this research series has been  most explicitly elaborated through the statistical survey on the state of regional programming in agriculture which  has been carried out by INEA since 1980 .

After the quoted study, his research work was directed towards the analysis of principal economical and institutional problems that obstruct the regional development, as well as towards the problems of the relation among different levels of management in agriculture and agricultural and economical policy in general. In that field Bartola initiated and completed numerous studies among which are those concerned with the analysis of the efficiency of public consumption in agriculture and the study of cooperation and technical assistance problems. Recently, he also started to deal with the relation between the development of agriculture activities and the environment. His complete university career was made in Ancona: first he was a volunteer assistant (1967-70), then a regular assistant (1979-77), and a full-time professor (1983-86). He taught courses in Economics and Agriculture Policy (School of Economics and Commerce), Economy and Farm Technique (Department of Agriculture and Engineering), institutions of agricultural economy and statistics (Department of Agriculture). During his research activity he studied for a certain period of time at the Agricultural Economics Department of the University of California (Davis) and took an active part in conferences and seminars of regional, national and international character. He was a member of the Presidential Council of Italian Agricultural Economics (Sidea) for three years, 1989-92. He was a member of the technical-scientific committee of Ismea. He was the author of more than a hundred publications of articles and volumes. Besides his brilliant scientific results, Alessandro Bartola will be also and especially remembered for his extraordinary humanity, his great inner energy guided by a deep Christian faith, accompanied by an extremely layman vision of the society and politics, and for his exceptional capacity to gather around him young students and researchers. Alessandro Bartola in his career and in his personal life had great respect for people close to him; indeed he used to treat all his collaborators not as a teacher but as a frank and sincere friend, and to work with extraordinary energy and dedication to the creation of the school of agricultural economists of Ancona. He was demanding with his students, but at the same time he wanted all of them to feel as part of a group of equals, and his democratic spirit was expressed actually through his great faith in team work and group cohesion. Those who have worked with him will remember him for his competence, his dedication to work, tolerance, humbleness and gentleness. Alessandro Bartola was in fact an extremely balanced man and even at the end of a lively discussion he had a word of encouragement and a smile for everybody: a teacher and a persistent researcher, he worked until his sudden death.