Jacob Hacker

  • Stanley B. Resor Professor of Political Science

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 two volumes—most recently, Health At Risk: America’s Ailing Health System and How to Heal It (2008).

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.

Most recently 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. In addition, he oversees a Social Science Research Council project on the “privatization of risk.”