Jacob Hacker
Jacob Hacker

Stanley B. Resor Professor of Political Science and Director of the Institution for Social and Policy Studies

Yale University

Jacob S. Hacker, Ph.D., is a member of the Washington Center for Equitable Growth’s Research Advisory Board. He is the Director of the Institution for Social and Policy Studies, and Stanley B. Resor Professor of Political Science at Yale University. He is also Vice President of the National Academy of Social Insurance, and a former Junior Fellow of the Harvard Society of Fellows.

An expert on the politics of U.S. health and social policy, he is the author of Winner-Take-All Politics: How Washington Made the Rich Richer and Turned Its Back on the Middle Class, written with Paul Pierson (2010, paperback 2011), The Great Risk Shift: The New Economic Insecurity and the Decline of the American Dream (2006, paperback 2008), The Divided Welfare State: The Battle over Public and Private Social Benefits in the United States (2002), and The Road to Nowhere: The Genesis of President Clinton’s Plan for Health Security (1997), co-winner of the Brownlow Book Award of the National Academy of Public Administration. He is also co-author, with Paul Pierson, of Off Center: The Republican Revolution and the Erosion of American Democracy (2005) and has edited three volumes—most recently, Shared Responsibility, Shared Risk: Government, Markets, and Social Policy in the Twenty-First Century, edited with Ann O’ Leary (2012).

Professor Hacker’s scholarly articles have appeared in such outlets as The American Political Science Review, The British Journal of Political Science, Health Affairs, The New England Journal of Medicine, Perspectives on Politics; Politics & Society, Studies in American Political Development, and The Journal of Health Politics, Policy, and Law. A frequent media commentator, Hacker has testified before Congress, advised leading politicians, and written popular pieces for the American Prospect, New Republic, Nation, New York Times, New York Times Magazine, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Boston Review, and other publications. He is the author of a 2007 proposal for universal health care, “Health Care for America,” that became a template for several presidential aspirants’ plans, as well as of several briefs on how and why to encourage private health insurance to compete with a new public health plan for the nonelderly—the so-called public option.

In 2010 with support from the Rockefeller Foundation, he and a group of multi-disciplinary researchers including Greg Huber and Mark Schlesinger of ISPS developed the Economic Security Index (ESI), which measures the share of Americans who experience at least a 25 percent decline in their income from one year to the next. The ESI is regularly updated, and each year, Professor Hacker and his team release additional supplemental reports that extend one or more aspect of the ESI.

In 2012, Professor Hacker with Nate Loewentheil (Yale Law) wrote an economic blueprint, “Prosperity Economics: Building an Economy for All,” that sets forth a plan to broadly spread economic growth and security for Americans. The proposal was supported by a coalition labor, community and civil rights groups as part of a new campaign called Prosperity for All.

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