Distinguished professor lecture to highlight pay, promotion and grants in academia

Thu, 11/02/2023


Savannah Rattanavong

LAWRENCE — Her work has been featured in the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Economist, the New York Times and more. She’s testified before Congress and consulted on equity and diversity issues in science funding with organizations like the National Academies of Sciences, the National Institutes of Health and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Donna Ginther

And soon, Donna Ginther will present her inaugural distinguished professor lecture at the University of Kansas.  

Ginther, the Roy A. Roberts and Regents Distinguished Professor of Economics, will present “Turning the Research Lens on Ourselves: What Do We Know About Pay, Promotion, and Grants in the Academy?” at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 8 in the Malott Room of the Kansas Union.

Individuals can register to attend the lecture.

Ginther’s research focus includes scientific labor markets, gender differences in employment outcomes, wage inequality and children’s educational attainments.

As the director of the Institute for Policy & Social Research since 2019, Ginther develops the institute’s multidisciplinary research program and manages the direction of the center. The institute is a faculty-driven research center supporting scientists who focus on policy-relevant issues and social problems.

In addition to her leadership work at the institute, Ginther is a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and an adviser to Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly’s Council on Tax Reform. During her service in the latter role, the council recommended the successful repeal of the state food sales tax.

Some of Ginther’s recent research covered the economic impact of COVID-19 and its effect on the Kansas economy. During the pandemic and through 2022, IPSR provided regular updates on economic conditions in the state, as well as county infection rates.

Ginther and her colleague Carlos Zambrana showed that Kansas counties that adopted mask mandates before vaccines became available experienced a 60% reduction in COVID cases, hospitalizations and deaths. This work received national attention, and Ginther received the COVID-19 Pivot Award from the KU Office of Research and the Don Steeples Service to Kansas Award.

She has also won multiple teaching and research awards, including the Byron T. Shutz Award for Excellence in Teaching, the University Scholar Award and the American Society of Cell Biology Public Service Award.

Ginther has previously served as vice president and board member of the Southern Economic Association, member of the Nominations Committee and the Board of the Committee on the Status of Women in the Economics Profession, and member of the American Economic Association Committee on Equity, Diversity and Professional Conduct.

Before joining the KU faculty in 2002, Ginther worked as a research economist and associate policy adviser at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta and taught at Washington University and Southern Methodist University.

Ginther earned her bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The first distinguished professorships were established at KU in 1958. A university distinguished professorship is awarded wholly based on merit, following exacting criteria. A complete list is available on the Distinguished Professor website.

Thu, 11/02/2023


Savannah Rattanavong

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Savannah Rattanavong

Office of the Provost