Faculty News spring 2021

June 10, 2021

Javed Ali has appeared recently in outlets such as 60 Minutes, ABC News, CNN, the Wall Street Journal, Associated Press, NPR’s Morning Edition, and the Los Angeles Times. He’ll become an associate professor of practice at the Ford School this fall.

In retirement, Robert Axelrod remains active. He is a member of the Advisory Committee for the Roundtable on Military Aspects of Cyber Security, is an editor of a special feature on the Dynamics of Political Polarization for the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and is doing work with Johns Hopkins oncologists on evolutionary approaches to cancer therapy.

Michael S. Barr served as a senior advisor on the Biden-Harris transition team for the Treasury Department and published the 3rd edition of his textbook, Financial Regulation: Law and Policy (Foundation Press) with Howell E. Jackson and Margaret Tahyar.

Joshua Basseches wrote an op-ed in Grist about climate legislation. He became co-chair of the Climate Social Science Network’s "Climate Conflict in the U.S. States" working group.

On the Scope Conditions Podcast, Charlotte Cavaillé discussed the politics of redistribution and how conceptions of “fairness” play into beliefs about wealth redistribution.

Self-described “redistricting junkie” John Chamberlin continued his work with Michigan’s first Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission and was profiled in U-M News. In February, he moderated a CLOSUP panel, "The next big thing: Redistricting in Michigan and the role of communities of interest."

John Ciorciari published a new book, Sovereignty Sharing in Fragile States (Stanford University Press), which provides a comparative assessment of criminal tribunals, joint policing arrangements, and anti-corruption initiatives.

Susan M. Collins was selected as one of seven new members of the Aspen Economic Strategy Group.

In March, Paul N. Courant delivered his U-M Distinguished University Professorship lecture, “Society, the University, and How I Spent the Last 40-odd Years.”

Christian Davenport launched his new podcast series, A Pod Called Quest, with Rutgers philosophy professor Derrick Darby examining racial injustice in America.  

Susan Dynarski co-authored “Designed to fail: Effects of the default option and information complexity on student loan repayment,” in the Journal of Public Economics. In March, she delivered the Presidential Address to the Midwest Economics Association's Annual Conference.

As past president of the Population Association of America, Ren Farley was asked to speak in March as part of a PAA series on demographic and social changes over time.

Ben Green consulted with Senator Sherrod Brown’s (D-OH) team on the proposed Data Accountability and Transparency Act (2020) and made several presentations, including to the World Bank’s Global Practice of Urban, Resilience, and Land Live forum and the University of Toronto’s Centre for Ethics

In recognition of his American Political Science Association career award, Rick Hall delivered the 2020 Barbara Sinclair Lecture.

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Robert Hampshire was appointed chief science officer and assistant secretary for research and technology in the U.S. Department of Transportation. 

Adrienne Harris was named co-director of the Center on Finance, Law & Policy.

In February, Yazier Henry was the keynote speaker for the “Interwoven Histories: Unraveling the Threads of Genetic Testing, Systemic Racism, and Medical Mistrust” virtual conference at Northwestern University.

Paula Lantz co-authored two articles, “Association of Social and Demographic Factors With COVID-19 Incidence and Death Rates in the U.S.,” in the Journal of the American Medical Association and “Equitable Pandemic Preparedness and Rapid Response: Lessons from COVID-19 for Pandemic Health Equity,” in the Journal of Health Politics, Policy, and Law.

Stephanie Leiser wrote an opinion for The Conversation and co-wrote one with Tom Ivacko for Bridge Michigan

Ambassador Melvyn Levitsky and his family established the Joan Levitsky Internship Fund, in memory of his wife, to support graduate student internships in international affairs.

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded $5 million to Earl Lewis to explore localized reparations solutions for African American and some Native American communities.

Shobita Parthasarathy testified before the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies, on the need to involve marginalized communities in new energy and climate policies. 

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Natasha Pilkauskas co-authored two articles, “Under whose roof? Understanding the living arrangements of children in doubled-up households” in Demography, and “Juggling jobs and kids: Maternal multiple job holding and children’s socioemotional behavior in early childhood” in Community Work & Family

Barry Rabe co-authored the 11th edition of his textbook, Environmental Policy: New Directions for the Twenty-First Century (CQ Press). He also served on the U-M President’s Commission on Carbon Neutrality and co-authored a policy report on natural resources and climate change for the National Academy of Public Administration.

Kaitlin Raimi co-authored, “How to encourage pro-environmental behaviors without crowding out public support for climate policies” in Behavioral Science and Policy and “Convincing conservatives: Private sector action can bolster support for climate change mitigation in the United States” in Energy Research & Social Science

Luke Shaefer’s research and advocacy has been cited as a key driver for the Biden Administration’s American Rescue Plan’s child poverty measures by The Atlantic, The New York Times, NPR’s 1A, and The Guardian.

Molly Spencer wrote “Against the Muse Myth: On Motherhood and the Writing Life," in Literary Hub. She was selected as a Summer Faculty Fellow by U-M’s Institute for the Humanities.

In March, Betsey Stevenson delivered the C. Woody Thompson Memorial Lecture on “Work, family, and public policy: An incomplete transition," for the Midwest Economics Association's Annual Conference. She has contributed to the national discourse about the pandemic’s impact on women, appearing in the New York Times, PBS Newshour, CNN, and more

Kevin Stange and Education Policy Initiative staff are collaborating with the Michigan Department of Education and the Center for Educational Performance and Information on an analysis of college acceleration programs in Michigan.

David Thacher published “How law shapes policing: the regulation of alcohol in the U.S., 1750–1860,” in Policing and Society.

Megan Tompkins-Stange co-authored “How the Political Economy of Knowledge Production Shapes Education Policy: The Case of Teacher Evaluation in Federal Policy Discourse” in Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis. She was quoted in the Washington Post and Vox about billionaires, philanthropy, and pandemic relief.

Celeste Watkins-Hayes, the Jean E. Fairfax Collegiate Professor of Public Policy and University Diversity and Social Transformation Professor, was named associate dean for academic affairs and will take up the reins beginning August 1, 2021.

Justin Wolfers co-authored an NBER working paper titled “Gender and the Dynamics of Economics Seminars”, which received recognition by Inside Higher Education and The New York Times.

Dean Yang won a U-M African Studies Center seed grant to study antiretroviral therapy adherence in Mozambique. He published a working paper, "Knowledge, Stigma, and HIV Testing.” He also co-authored “Correcting Perceived Social Distancing Norms to Combat COVID-19” (NBER working paper).

Welcome and congratulations

Headshots of Morela Hernandez, Katherine Michelmore, Kaitlin Raimi, and Natasha Pilkauskas
L-R: Hernandez, Michelmore, Raimi, Pilkauskas

Morela Hernandez joins the Ford School as professor of public policy, with tenure, and will become the faculty director of the Ford School’s Leadership Initiative. Most recently, Hernandez was the Donald and Lauren Morel associate professor of business administration in Leadership and Organizational Behavior of the University of Virginia Darden School of Business. 

Katherine Michelmore joins the Ford School as associate professor of public policy, with tenure. She is a leading scholar on the social safety net, education policy, labor economics, economic demography, and the efficacy of the Earned Income Tax Credit and its impact on children. 

Natasha Pilkauskas and Kaitlin Raimi have each received promotions to associate professor, with tenure, at the Ford School. Pilkauskas’s research considers how demographic, social safety net, and economic shifts in the U.S. affect families and children with low-incomes. Raimi is a social and environmental psychologist, whose interests center on how individuals can promote or prevent environmentally sustainable behaviors and policies.


Dynarski heads home

Susan Dynarski sits outside her Harvard freshman dorm

Susan Dynarski will be moving back to her hometown and joining the faculty of the Harvard School of Education this fall. Sue has made a tremendous impact on the Ford School, on the University of Michigan, and most importantly, on the issues of educational inequities about which she cares so deeply. We will miss her. Visit Sue’s tribute page to read about her impact.

Alumni: please visit our site to wish Professor Dynarski well, tell her how you’re using the lessons she taught you, and share how she influenced your work or career. A Toast to Susan Dynarski.


Long-time leaders retire

A number of the Ford School’s longtime leaders have moved into well-earned retirements over the past year. In-person celebrations were delayed by the pandemic, but with the public health crisis receding, we’ll find ways to celebrate their incredible accomplishments and thank them for the central roles they’ve played in establishing our school.

Paul N. Courant, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, Edward M. Gramlich Distinguished University Professor of Economics and Public Policy, and Harold T. Shapiro Collegiate Professor of Public Policy, retired in May 2020.

Alan V. Deardorff, John W. Sweetland Professor of International Economics and Professor of Public Policy, retired in May 2021.

Carl P. Simon, Professor of Public Policy, Professor of Mathematics, and Professor of Complex Systems, retired in May 2020.

Renowned human rights expert Professor Susan Waltz retired in December 2020.

Below, find the full, formatted Spring 2021 edition of State & Hill.

Click here to return to the Spring 2021 S&H homepage.