Paying for procurement: analysis of landman compensation surveys

Timothy Fitzgerald, Forrest F. Aven

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Utilizing a unique time series of cross-sectional surveys, we analyse the labour market for professional landman services to establish the factors affecting compensation during a recent period that substantially increased demand. Land services are an important subsector of the energy industry, especially for oil and gas exploration and production, which has been stimulated by technological improvements that facilitate economic extraction of unconventional resources. That led to an increase in oil and gas leasing activity and a resultant increase in demand for land services. We assess factors affecting compensation across several relevant margins. An influx of entrants into the profession has disrupted historic compensation patterns; entry appears to have been greatest in regions of the United States most affected by unconventional resource development. Some landmen are independent contractors while others are company employees. We find mixed results for professional certifications across contract types and gender, using instrumental variables to account for contractual choice. Abbreviation: AAPL: American Association of Professional Landmen; RPL: registered professional landman; CPL: certified professional landman; PLM: professional land manager.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)552-567
Number of pages16
JournalApplied Economics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020


  • Landmen
  • certification
  • compensation


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