John Austin

Director, Michigan Economic Center

About John

John Austin directs the Michigan Economic Center, a center for ideas and network-building to advance Michigan’s economic transformation. He also serves as a Non-Resident Senior Fellow with the Brookings Institution and is a Research Fellow with the Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, where he leads these organizations’ efforts to support economic transformation in the American Midwest and in the industrial heartlands of Western democracies. In these roles he has been the author of some of the most influential analysis of the politics and economics of industrial heartlands, as well as tangible guides and guidance for policymakers around constructive actions and change. Mr. Austin is also affiliated faculty with the University of Michigan’s Marsal Family School of Education, and the William Davidson Institute within the university’s Ross School of Business. Previously, he served 16 years in elected service on the Michigan State Board of Education. Mr. Austin received a master’s degree from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, and a bachelor’s degree in Economics & Political Science from Swarthmore College, with High Honors and Phi Beta Kappa.