Economists Brannon, Hanson will provide research, commentary on wide range of policy issues

The Badger Institute welcomes two highly accomplished, influential economists to its growing Visiting Fellows program today.

Ike Brannon, president of the consulting firm Capital Policy Analytics in Washington, D.C., and Andrew Hanson, associate professor of economics at Marquette University, will provide the institute with research and commentary on a wide variety of topical issues ranging from labor force needs to immigration to minimum wages to tax subsidies.

“This is a very good day for the Badger Institute and, frankly, for all of Wisconsin,” said Badger Institute President Mike Nichols. “These are highly respected thinkers and analysts who know the state and want to help it flourish through sound policy. We’ve already asked them to focus on the state’s most pressing need, our worker shortage, and they will publish a collaborative white paper in the coming months. But you’ll also see regular commentary and analysis that should be must-reading for anyone interested in making Wisconsin a better place.”

Both economists have contributed to the Badger Institute in the past, including a joint research paper on the impact of raising Wisconsin’s minimum wage. Brannon has also done research for the Badger Institute on tenure, professional licensure and minimum markup among other topics.

They join Jay Miller, a Whitefish Bay tax attorney and adjunct professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s Lubar School of Business, and Kahryn Riley, an attorney who manages the Mackinac Center for Public Policy’s criminal justice reform initiative, as part of the growing fellows program.

Brannon, a former economics professor at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, has also been a senior fellow for the Bush Institute and was director of economic policy for the American Action Forum. He served as the chief economist for the House Energy and Commerce Committee, chief economist for the Republican Policy Committee, senior adviser for tax policy at the U.S. Treasury, principal economic adviser for Senator Orrin Hatch on the Senate Finance Committee, chief economist for the Congressional Joint Economic Committee, and senior economist for the Office of Management and Budget.

“I’m pleased to once again have a formal affiliation with the Badger Institute,” said Brannon. “It has had a tremendous impact on public policy in Wisconsin in the 20 years since I first began writing for it. I look forward to contributing to its further success.”

Hanson is an associate fellow of the R Street Institute, a public policy research organization based in Washington, D.C. Before joining the Marquette faculty in 2012, he served for four years as an assistant professor at Georgia State University. From 2005-2006, Hanson served as a staff economist for the President’s Council of Economic Advisers in Washington, D.C. His primary fields of interest are public finance and urban economics. Among other things, he has examined federal housing subsidies, spatially targeted redevelopment programs and racial discrimination in housing markets.

“I’m excited to join the Badger Institute as a visiting fellow to continue to research policy issues that matter for Wisconsin,” said Hanson. “As someone who grew up in Wisconsin and has spent a good portion of my adult life here, I care deeply about the success of the state and how good policy plays a role in achieving it.”

The Badger Institute’s mission is to ensure opportunity and advance economic prosperity through free markets, individual initiative, limited and efficient government, and education reform. For more information, visit

Print Friendly, PDF & Email