Melissa S. Kearney

Director, Aspen Economic Strategy Group

Neil Moskowitz Professor of Economics, University of Maryland

MELISSA S. KEARNEY is the Neil Moskowitz Professor of Economics at the University of Maryland. She is also director of the Aspen Economic Strategy Group; a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research; and a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. She serves on the Board of Directors of MDRC and on advisory boards for the Notre Dame Wilson-Sheehan Lab for Economic Opportunities and the Smith Richardson Foundation. Kearney previously served as Director of the Hamilton Project at Brookings and as co-chair of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology J-PAL State and Local Innovation Initiative. Kearney’s research focuses on poverty, inequality, and social policy in the United States. Her work is published in leading academic journals and is frequently cited in the press. She is an editorial board member of the American Economic Journal: Economic Policy and the Journal of Economic Literature; she was previously co-editor of the Journal of Human Resources and a Senior Editor of the Future of Children. Kearney teaches Public Economics at both the undergraduate and Ph.D. level at the University of Maryland. She holds a B.A. in Economics from Princeton University and a Ph.D. in Economics from MIT.


The Economic Case for Smart Investing in America’s Youth

The United States spends a relatively small sum on children, both on a per capita basis and as a share of all spending. In 2019, the federal government spent an estimated $5,595 per child on programs benefiting children under 18, compared to $29,189 per elderly American on entitlement programs alone—a gap that remains wide even ...

Introduction: Building a More Resilient US Economy

The post-pandemic US economy features a strong labor market but also persistent inflation, rising levels of debt, and acute educational challenges. These issues are compounded by ongoing, systemic difficulties: domestic and global, economic and political. This policy volume considers these topics and others, with a thematic focus on building a more resilient US economy. The ...