September 2012 Newsletter



Division of Economics and Business
• • •September 2012 ISSUE • • •
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              September 2012

       Graduating Class - May 2012


• Mine Value Curves •

Professor Graham Davis and Masters student James Holman were sponsored by Denham Capital Management LP over the past two years to research the Mine Value Curve. The Value Curve is an idea put forward by mining analysts that shows the share price of an exploration property rising dramatically as it moves through exploration, but then falling just as abruptly once a successful feasibility study is completed. The curve then rises again as the property moves into construction. Denham wondered if the curve actually existed, and if it did, whether such share price movements offered opportunities for exceptional returns.

Davis and Holman determined that since the vast majority of successful exploration properties at some point become part of a multi-asset corporate portfolio, tracking the share price attributable to a single project from exploration through to production is difficult. The Value Curve is therefore a notion that is not based on firm empirical evidence. They also determined that analysts are representing the most likely share price, as opposed to the expected share price, in these curves. Interestingly, the proposed up-down-up pattern could be completely explained using a real option model of the most likely fundamental value of a successful project as it moves through the various stages of exploration and development. Denham Capital Management is a private equity firm focused on energy and commodities.


• Rio Tinto Minerals •


Greetings! My name is John Paolillo. I am a Masters student in the Mineral and Energy Economics program. During summer 2012, I worked as a marketing-analyst intern for Rio Tinto Minerals (RTM) at the Colorado headquarters. I am grateful for the connection between Colorado School of Mines (Mines) and RTM. Each year RTM hires an intern from the Mineral and Energy Economics Program.

Working at RTM has been a great experience. I was encouraged to ask questions and my comments were valued due to the great education I am receiving at Mines. The commercial team I was a part of helps steer the direction of the company by providing details of current conditions to the sales team and future opportunities to the R&D team. I knew I had chosen a great career path when I was involved at RTM in meetings with employees from four different continents.

2012 Conference on
Earth and Energy Research

Two graduate students in the Division were selected to participate in the Conference on Earth & Energy Research at Mines on March 28-29. Conference topics encompassed areas of earth, energy, environment, materials, and systems engineering. Abdel Zellou, who in May received his PhD in Mineral and Energy Economics, presented his research on Super Cycles in Energy Commodity Prices. Setareh Saadat, M.S. Candidate in Engineering and Technology Management, presented her research on Renewable Sources in Iran: A Sustainable Future.

We congratulate these students on being selected to participate in the poster session.  


Angel Capital Summit Conference in Denver

On March 22nd, twenty-four ETM students attended the Rocky Mountain Venture Club’s Angel Capital Summit Conference in Denver. Over forty entrepreneurial firms looking for venture funding made presentations to angel investors at this conference. Industries included biotechnology, software, retail, and environmental issues, as well as new social media technology. The students observed these presentations, and the subsequent angel-investor questions. Additionally, students met with the entrepreneurs and learned more about the patent process, new firm strategy and, for many firms, international operations. This “outside the classroom” activity provided the ETM group insights into current technology and new, high growth firms.

Attending this conference gave the students a “real world” understanding of many of the topics discussed in their ETM classes. During the following weeks, students referred back to many of the presentations as examples during class exercises. This is the fourth year that ETM students have attended this conference and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

PhD Degrees awarded
in 2011-12

Christopher Cullenbine
Advisors:  Alexandra Newman and R. Kevin Wood
"Theoretical and Computational Advances for Open Pit Block Sequencing and Network Diversion"

Jennifer Van Dinter
Advisor:  Alexandra Newman
"Heuristic and Exact Approaches for Variants of the Unit Commitment Problem"

William B. Lambert
Advisor: Alexandra Newman
"Techniques to Reduce the Solution Time of the Open Pit Block Sequencing Problem"

Abdel Moughit Zellou
Advisor:  John Cuddington
"Super Cycles in Energy Commodity Prices"

Arturo Leonardo Vasquez
Advisor:  Graham Davis
"The Optimal Regulation of Accidental Pollution and Market Power in the Mineral and Energy Industries: Policy Implications for the U.S.A. and Peru"


•Welcome  Dr. Harrison Fell •

Harrison Fell joined the Division of Economics and Business in January 2012 as an Assistant Professor.   His PhD and MS degrees are in economics from the University of Washington.  He received a BS in economics and engineering from CSM.  Fell comes to us from Resources for the Future in Washington, D.C., where he was a Fellow in the Energy and Natural Resources division.  His current research focuses on natural resource and environmental management.

•May 2012 Student Graduation Awards •

William Jesse Coulter Award in Mineral and Energy Economics -
Jennifer Van Dinter and her advisor Dr. Alexandra Newman

Hubert and Sarah Risser Award in Mineral and Energy Economics -
Eric Segal and Dr. Rod Eggert

Operations Research Award -
Brian Lambert and his advisor Dr. Alexandra Newman

William Jesse Coulter Award in Economics -
Kevin Raber and Dr. Scott Houser

Jerome and Rebecca Broussard award in Engineering Technology Management -
Patrick Lineberry - not pictured



Thanks to our Donors July 2011 - June 2012

Mohammad Alzohayan
Erin Anthony
David W. Baker
David Bloch
Jonathan and Greta Bloomfield
Jerome and Rebecca Broussard
Casting Industry Suppliers Assoc.
Nicholas Darschewski
Jonathan Fross
Veronica Garrido
Celine Graas
Sam Hewitt
Patrick Lineberry
Vladimir Morakhovsky
Damdinjav Munkbold
Rosemary Ojeh
The Darlene Pauli Family
Jack Pecoraro

Rio Tinto Minerals
Royal Gold
David Schramm
  President and Mrs. Bill Scoggins
Shell Oil Company
Thomas Toole
Jennifer Van Dinter
Nicholas Van Gundy
Viola Vestal Coulter Foundation
Bree Waltman
EB Faculty

Make a gift to the Economics and Business Alumni and Friends Fund

• Keep in Touch •
Thank you for keeping us informed of your professional accomplishments.  We update our website with the information you send us.  Updates can be sent to Kathleen Martin.


Division of Economics and Business
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