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David Thacher

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Core faculty

David E. Thacher

Associate Professor of Public Policy and Urban Planning
As an associate professor of public policy and urban planning, Thacher’s research draws from philosophy, history, and the interpretive social sciences to develop and apply a humanistic approach to policy research. Most of his work has focused on criminal justice policy, where he has undertaken studies of order maintenance policing, the local police role in homeland security, community policing reform, the distribution of safety and security, prisoner re-entry, and criminal justice discretion.
Publication

Policing a neurodiverse world

Feb 20, 2024
When responding to calls related to mental health crises, police should work to change the environments where people with psychiatric disabilities live and work, rather than simply connecting them with medical intervention.Professor David Thacher, a...
State & Hill

Faculty news, fall 2023

Dec 12, 2023
Axelrod's adventures Robert Axelrod, William D. Hamilton Distinguished University Professor Emeritus, writes about the difficulties and rewards of interdisciplinary collaboration in his new autobiography, A Passion for Cooperation: Adventures...
Publication

Thacher studies history to inform today's police reform

Oct 27, 2023
Although some may view reducing the harms of policing as a contemporary issue, David Thacher encourages modern reformers to consider the past in the Journal of Criminal Justice. Using original archival research, Thacher examined the use of summons...
Publication

Thacher on coercion in mental health treatment

Jun 26, 2023
The death of Jordan Neely on a subway car in New York in May remains in the news, as a former marine, Daniel Penny, has been indicted for the chokehold that killed him. In the background, details of Neely’s mental illness has reignited a debate...
State & Hill

Faculty News, spring 2023

May 3, 2023
Dominique Adams-Santos, Celeste Watkins-Hayes, and PhD candidate Kayonne Christy contributed a chapter, "Narratives in Context: Locating Racism and Sexism in Black Women's Health Experiences," to The Routledge Companion to...
State & Hill

Faculty Findings, fall 2022

Dec 19, 2022
Governing for revolution In her 2021 book, new Ford School professor Megan Stewart describes how, during the Chinese Civil war in the 1940s, Chairman Mao and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) established a new model for governing as they took up...
Publication

Thacher examines the interaction of police and the mentally ill 

Dec 19, 2022
In an essay for Vital City New York, Ford School professor David Thacher looks at the potential fall-out of Mayor Eric Adams’s recent order of forced psychiatric evaluation for people causing trouble on the streets and in the subway. He traces New...
State & Hill

Faculty News, fall 2022

Dec 19, 2022
Jenna Bednar published “The Fractured Superpower: Federalism is Remaking U.S. Democracy and Foreign Policy,” in Foreign Affairs. The Coalition for Networked Information, the Association of Research Libraries, and EDUCAUSE awarded Paul Courant the...
State & Hill

Faculty News spring 2021

Jun 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...
State & Hill

Faculty News fall 2020

Dec 9, 2020
Javed Ali organized a panel for New America on domestic terrorism. His new podcast, The Burn Bag, produced with two Ford School alumni, A'ndre Gonawela (BA ‘19) and Ryan Rosenthal (BA ‘19), has featured U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan, General David...
State & Hill

Latest CLOSUP survey explores Michigan public safety

Dec 9, 2015
I had to really drum up interest a decade ago; nobody gave a rip,” says David Thacher of his course, “Thinking about Crime.” These days, there’s a lot more interest in public safety—at the Ford School and elsewhere. Reflecting those concerns, the...
State & Hill

Order maintenance in the eyes of Olmsted

Apr 22, 2013
In the center of our nation's most densely populated city - a city buffeted by noise and commerce and pollution - lies the oasis of Central Park, a lush landscape co-designed in the 1850s by America's most famous landscape architect, Frederick Law...
News

Charity Auction 2007

Apr 1, 2007
The Spring Charity Auction is the most important student-led annual event at the Ford School. This year's was the biggest, best-dressed and most lucrative so far. Over $15,000 was raised in a single night to help fund the Direct Action Centre for...