H. Luke Shaefer, Ph.D. is the Hermann and Amalie Kohn Professor of Social Justice and Social Policy and Associate Dean for Research and Policy Engagement at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan. He is also a professor of social work and the inaugural director of Poverty Solutions, an interdisciplinary, presidential initiative that partners with communities and policymakers to find new ways to prevent and alleviate poverty. Through his role at Poverty Solutions, Shaefer acts as a special counselor on anti-poverty policy to the director of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.
Shaefer’s research on poverty and social welfare policy in the United States has been published in top peer-reviewed academic journals in the fields of public policy, social work, public health, health services research, and history, and his work has been supported by the National Science Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and U.S. Census Bureau among other sources. He has presented his research at the White House and before numerous federal agencies, has testified before the U.S. Senate Finance Committee and has advised a number of the nation’s largest human service providers.
His work has been cited in media outlets such as the New York Times, Washington Post, The Economist, The Atlantic, and Los Angeles Times, and he has been featured on such programs as Marketplace and CNBC’s Nightly Business Report. His book with Kathryn Edin, “$2.00 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America,” was named one of the 100 Notable Books of 2015 by the New York Times Book Review, and won the Hillman Prize for Book Journalism among other awards. He was recently named to an Andrew Carnegie Fellowship.
Shaefer received his BA in politics from Oberlin College and AM and PhD from the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration.
- Shaefer, Luke, Wiederspan, J , Rhodes, E . 2019. Why Social Workers Should Consider a Negative Income Tax. Journal of Poverty
- Shaefer, Luke, Edin, Kathryn , Fusaro, Vincent , Wu, Pinghui . 2019. The Decline of Cash Assistance and the Well-Being of Poor Households with Children. Social Forces
- Shaefer, Luke, Harris, David R., Collyer, Sophie , Duncan, Greg , Edin, Kathryn , Garfinkel, Irwin , Smeeding, Timothy M, Waldfogel, Jane , Wimer, Christopher , Yoshikawa, Hirokazu . 2018. A Universal Child Allowance: A Plan to Reduce Poverty and Income Instability Among Children in the United States. RSF 4(2):22-42.
- Levy, Helen G, Shaefer, Luke, Fusaro, Vincent A. 2018. Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Lifetime Prevalence of Homelessness in the United States. Demography 55(6):2119-2128.
- Shaefer, Luke, Edin, Kathryn . 2018. The Rise of Extreme Poverty in the United States. Inequality in the 21st Century
- Shaefer, Luke, Allard, Scott W, Wathen, Maria V, Danziger, Sandra K. 2017. Neighborhood Food Infrastructure and Food Security in Metropolitan Detroit. Journal of Consumer Affairs 51(3):566-597.
- Shaefer, Luke, Lapidos, A , Gwozdek, A . 2017. Factors associated with appointment-keeping in an American University's dental clinic system: toward practice-based population health. Public Health 151:59-62.
- Shaefer, Luke, Kimberlin, S , Kim, Jiyoon . 2016. Measuring poverty using the Supplemental Poverty Measure in the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, 1998 to 2010. Journal of Economic and Social Measurement 41(1):17-47.
- Shaefer, Luke, Rodems, R . 2016. Left Out: Policy Diffusion and the Exclusion of Black Workers from Unemployment Insurance. Social Science History 40(3):385-404.
- Shaefer, Luke, Phillips, E , Aksu, M , Lapidos, A . 2016. Is a mid-level dental provider model acceptable to potential patients?. Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology 44(5):426-434.