Dr. David Barkin received his doctorate in economics from Yale University in 1966. Since 1975, he has been Professor of Economics at the Autonomous Metropolitan University-Unit Xochimilco (Mexico). He participated, in 1974, in the creation of the Ecodesarrollo Center, as part of CONACYT, and continues as a member of its successor body, the Ecology and Development Center. He received the National Award for Political Economy and is a member of the Mexican Academy of Sciences and Emeritus Researcher of the National System of Researchers.
He has published numerous books on problems related to economic development in Mexico, food systems and sustainable development. His most recent books, which deal with burning issues of contemporary Mexico, are: Mexican Innovations in Water Management (Mexico: Department of Economic Production, Metropolitan Autonomous University-Xochimilco and Center for Ecology and Development, 2001), and Management of the Urban Water in Mexico (Mexico: University of Guadalajara, 2006). Another of his books, Wealth, Poverty and Sustainable Development is a bilingual essay that circulated widely, and that is available to download for free online. His most recent book is: From Protest to Proposal: 50 years imagining and building the future.
Recently, he has directed postgraduate students in communities in various parts of Mexico to examine issues related to the sustainable management of regional resources. These projects are designed to promote capacities for the self-management and management of ecosystems as well as to promote the self-sufficiency of their basic needs, in a context where productive diversification generates some complementary income to raise the material levels of life. Among the areas where they have worked, are: ecotourism, the productive development of natural protected areas, the conservation and restoration of community forests, and the use of small plants for the treatment of wastewater. In each, the work is designed to generate new productive opportunities and improve ecosystems.