Federal lawmakers continue to seek out University of Michigan faculty members to lend their expertise and knowledge to help inform federal policy.
In the last year, 13 U-M faculty members and researchers testified at 14 congressional hearings spanning an array of policy issues.
Testifying in front of congressional committees is just one of the ways faculty members engage with the federal legislative process. They also serve on federal advisory committees, hold leadership positions in their professional associations and societies, draft opinion editorials and more.
President Mark Schlissel launched a public engagement and impact focus area in 2017 to further encourage U-M faculty to share their knowledge with the state, the nation and the world.
“Great public universities always strive to share the knowledge produced by world-class research with the people they serve,” Schlissel said. “The Michigan faculty have tremendous expertise in matters that are essential to American progress.
“When U-M scholars testify before federal leaders, it puts information that has been tested through academic rigor into the hands of decision-makers, informs better public policy and emphasizes the outstanding value we provide to communities across our nation.”
U-M faculty and researchers who are invited to testify are encouraged to reach out to the U-M Office of Federal Relations who can help provide support. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In 2021, the below faculty participated in congressional hearings. Links to the hearings online are in parentheses.
- Shobita Parthasarathy, professor of public policy, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy; and professor of women’s and gender studies, LSA, testified before the House Appropriations Committee, Subcommittee on Energy and Water at a hearing focused on understanding strategies for energy and climate innovation.
- James Hines, L. Hart Wright Collegiate Professor of Law and professor of law in the Law School, Richard A. Musgrave Collegiate Professor of Economics and professor of economics in LSA, and professor of business economics in the Stephen M. Ross School of Business, testified before the Senate Finance Committee at a hearing focused on U.S. international tax policy and its impacts on American workers, jobs and investment.
- Jennifer Erb-Downward, senior research associate with Poverty Solutions, and research area specialist senior and intermittent lecturer in epidemiology in the School of Public Health, testified before the House Education and Labor Committee, Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education at a hearing focused on improving educational outcomes for students experiencing homelessness and children in foster care.
- Paula Nas, lecturer IV in economics in the College of Arts and Sciences, and director of university outreach at UM-Flint, testified before the House Science, Space and Technology Committee’s Subcommittee on Research and Technology at a hearing focused on federal regional innovation economies.
- Richard Primus, Theodore J. St. Antoine Collegiate Professor and professor of law in the Law School, testified before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs at a hearing focused on examining statehood for the District of Columbia.
- Betsey Stevenson, professor of public policy in the Ford School, and professor of economics in LSA, testified before the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, Subcommittee on Economic Policy at a hearing focused on the role of child care in an equitable post-pandemic economy.
- Greg Keoleian, Peter M. Wege Endowed Professor of Sustainable Systems and professor of sustainable systems in the School for Environment and Sustainability, and professor of civil and environmental engineering in the College of Engineering, testified before the House Science, Space and Technology Committee’s Subcommittee on Research and Technology at a hearing focused on understanding research on plastic waste reduction and recycling and seeking sustainable solutions.
- While still at U-M, Susan Dynarski, former professor of public policy, education, and economics, testified before the House Ways and Means Committee’s Subcommittee on Oversight at a hearing focused on expanding access to higher education.
- Mary Gallagher, Amy and Alan Lowenstein Professor of Democracy, Democratization, and Human Rights, professor of political science, and director of the International Institute in LSA; and research associate professor at the Center for Political Studies, Institute for Social Research, testified before the Senate Finance Committee, Subcommittee on Fiscal Responsibility and Economic Growth at a hearing on investing in U.S. competitiveness.
- Parthasarathy testified before the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology Committee’s Subcommittee on Energy at a hearing focused on fostering equity in energy innovation.
- H. Luke Shaefer, Hermann and Amalie Kohn Professor of Social Justice and Social Policy and associate dean for research and policy engagement, Ford School, testified before the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus at a hearing focused on building on the success of the pandemic relief programs.
- Betsey Stevenson, professor of public policy and economics at the Ford School, testified before the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee at a hearing focused on the labor market and economic growth.
- Jenny Radesky, assistant professor of pediatrics in the Medical School, testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Health at a hearing focused on legislation protecting children and families.
- Todd Allen, Glenn F. and Gladys H. Knoll Department Chair of Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences and professor of nuclear engineering and radiological sciences in the College of Engineering, testified before the House Science, Space and Technology Committee’s Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight and Subcommittee on Energy at a hearing focused on strategies to enable success at the Department of Energy’s Office of Nuclear Energy.
- Sue Anne Bell, assistant professor of nursing in the School of Nursing, testified before the Senate Special Committee on Aging at a hearing focused on inclusive disaster management including improving preparedness, response and recovery.
This story was written by Madeline Nykaza, originally published by The University Record, and updated by the Ford School to include Betsey Stevenson's October testimony.
- Domestic policy
- education policy
- Economics and finance
- energy and environment
- Poverty and social policy
- Science and technology
- Democracy and Debate
- Shobita Parthasarathy
- Jennifer Erb-Downward
- Betsey Stevenson
- Susan Dynarski
- Luke Shaefer
- H. Luke Shaefer
- Poverty Solutions
- Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program
- The University Record
- congressional testimony
- covid-19 impact
- House Ways and Means Committee
- higher education
- higher education policy
- child care subsidies
- Child Care Policy
- Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee
- foster children
- homeless students
- House Appropriations Committee
- U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies
- Climate Change
- education policy initiative