Terry Anderson

John and Jean De Nault Senior Fellow

Terry L. Anderson has been a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution since 1998 and is currently the John and Jean De Nault Senior Fellow. He is the past president of the Property and Environment Research Center in Bozeman, MT, and a Professor Emeritus at Montana State University where he won many teaching awards during his 25 year career.

Anderson is one of the founders of “free market environmentalism,” the idea of using markets and property rights to solve environmental problems, and in 2015 published the third edition of his co-authored book by that title. He is author or editor of 39 books, including most recently, Unlocking the Wealth of Indian Nations (2016), exploring the institutional underpinnings of American Indian reservation economies.

In addition to publishing in professional journals, Terry Anderson speaks around the world and is often featured in the popular press, including frequent editorials in the Wall Street Journal. Dr. Anderson received his Ph.D. from the University of Washington in 1972 and has been a visiting scholar at Oxford University, Basel University, Clemson University, and Cornell, and a Fulbright Fellow at the University of Canterbury.

Terry is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys fly fishing, hiking, skiing, horseback riding, and archery hunting.

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Recent Commentary


Earth Day At 50, With Terry Anderson

by Terry Andersonvia Powerline
Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Hoover Institution fellow Terry Anderson discusses the 50th anniversary of Earth Day and what has changed over those 50 years.


Earth Day Celebrations Will Be Quieted By COVID-19

by Terry Andersonvia The Hill
Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Earth Day’s 50-year anniversary on April 22 is likely to take a back seat to COVID-19, but environmentalists are already seeing a way to leverage the pandemic for their causes. Climate activist Bill McKibben, for example, sees this as an opportunity to implement regulations “in ways that were unimaginable.” In other words, if the heavy-handed government can stop COVID-19, why can’t it save the earth from climate change?


Terry Anderson On The John Batchelor Show

interview with Terry Andersonvia The John Batchelor Show
Friday, March 13, 2020

Hoover Institution fellow Terry Anderson discusses his Hill article "The case for transferring federal lands back to Native Americans."


The Case For Transferring Federal Lands Back To Native Americans

by Terry Andersonvia The Hill
Friday, March 6, 2020

A proposal by Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.) to transfer the National Bison Range – 18,800 acres – to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT) has run into opposition on the grounds that it is simply another part of the Republican Party’s federal land “give away” program. Such claims are nonsense.

Land quality, land rights, and indigenous poverty

by Dominic Parker, Terry Andersonvia Journal of Development Economics
Sunday, March 1, 2020

Agricultural land endowments should contribute positively to economic growth, but in countries colonized by European powers this has not always happened. Productive land attracted colonization, which disrupted Indigenous institutions in ways that can stunt development. American Indian reservations provide a powerful example.

Policy InsightsFeaturedEconomy

Environmental Policy Insight

by Terry Anderson, Admiral James O. Ellis Jr., David R. Henderson, John H. Cochrane, George P. Shultzvia PolicyEd
Thursday, November 14, 2019

Whether it is climate change, polluted oceans, or smoggy skies, we owe it to future generations—not to mention our current well-being—to improve our environment. But finding the right answer isn’t always easy. Some proposed solutions would have large negative effects on the economy. Other ideas sound good but don’t have a significant positive effect on the environment. How can we find the best solution?

Lessons From The Hoover Policy Boot CampFeatured

Environmental Markets: A Property Rights Approach With Terry Anderson

by Terry Andersonvia PolicyEd
Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Free market environmentalism is a property rights-oriented approach that improves environmental quality and achieves more conservation than traditional regulation.

In the News

Fed Court Strikes Down Obama EPA’s Rights-Killing 'Waters Of The US' Rule

quoting Terry Andersonvia MRC TV
Tuesday, September 3, 2019

There are very few good things one can say about Richard Nixon’s monstrous creation, the inaptly labeled “Environmental Protection Agency”. Since given bureaucratic life in 1970, it’s continuing line of edicts and fines have shut down businesses, prevented others from starting, and seen people kill endangered animals rather than have government officials discover them and make their land worthless.

Analysis and Commentary

No More Socialism For Native Americans

by Terry Anderson, Wendy Purnellvia The Washington Times
Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Elizabeth Warren set a higher bar for wooing the Native American vote by calling for $10 billion in spending to stimulate economic development, build infrastructure and restore tribal sovereignty. She and her fellow Democratic presidential candidates who met with tribal leaders in Sioux City, Iowa, earlier this week, fail to recognize that tribes don’t need more federal grants, they need more revenue.

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Why Here, Why Now? Why Did The United States Enjoy Dramatic Improvements In The Standard Of Living During The Last Century?

interview with John F. Cogan, Lee Ohanian, Terry Anderson, George P. Shultzvia Uncommon Knowledge
Monday, August 26, 2019

Hoover Institution economists John Cogan, Lee Ohanian, Terry Anderson, and George Shultz examine the causes for and the reasons behind so many improvements being made to the quality of life in the United States over the past century. They analyze the role that free markets, property rights, innovation, regulation, taxes, and national security played in these remarkable achievements.