Ford School named #4 public affairs program in the U.S. and #2 in key specialty areas

April 25, 2023

The Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan is recognized again as one of America’s top graduate programs in public affairs, ranked 4th in the U.S. according to the latest U.S. News & World Report rankings.

The Ford School was ranked #2 in the U.S. for public policy analysis—the essential element that distinguishes our rigorous social science-based program from competitors in the field of public affairs. The school earned a #2 ranking in social policy, which has been a core strength of the school for decades, a #2 ranking in health policy and management, and a #5 ranking in environmental policy and management. 

The Ford School's consistent top-level rankings reflect strengths in and commitment to research and public policy engagement related to poverty, health, education, racial justice, political participation, science and technology, and other topics both domestically and internationally.

“It’s an honor for the Ford School to be recognized,” said interim dean Celeste Watkins-Hayes. “We continue to innovate, preparing our students to address pressing societal challenges using cutting-edge tools and agile critical thinking skills. We will continue to build on these strengths, and continue to educate leaders grounded in service.”

The U.S. News and World Report rankings are based solely on peer assessment survey results, of deans, directors, and department chairs representing 269 master’s programs in public affairs and administration. Two surveys were sent to each school in fall 2022 and early 2023. Respondents were asked to rate the academic quality of master's programs. For specialty ratings, deans, directors, and department chairs were asked to nominate up to 15 programs for excellence in each specialty.