MA in Government Celebrates 25 Years! 

Dr. Ginsberg with Adjunct Faculty Thomas Stanton and Michael SeigelThe MA in Government Program celebrated its 25th Anniversary on Thursday, October 25 at the US Capitol’s Visitor Center.  Many alumni, faculty, and current students attended the fall gala.  Dr. Ben Ginsberg, Chair of the Center for Advanced Governmental Studies and founder of the MA in Government Program gave welcoming remarks.  Dr. Kathy Hill recognized alum, Doug Andres ’15, for sponsoring our event at the Capitol’s Visitor Center.  Andres is the Press Secretary for Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan. Dr. Hill also recognized Mr. Thomas Stanton for his 25 years of teaching excellence in the program and also gave special gifts to Dr. Ginsberg for his vision and direction for the program and to Dr. Wolfson for directing the program these past 10 years.  

Dr. Wolfson introduced the featured speaker for the evening -- Washington Post columnist EJ Dionne, who also has appointments at the Brookings Institution and Harvard University.  Mr. Dionne spoke on “How to Govern Ourselves After the 2018 Elections” and took many questions from the audience of faculty, alumni, and current students.  It was a happy reunion of alumni (the furthest going back to the Class of 1998!), current students, and dedicated faculty members.  Here’s to another 25! 

Dr. Wolfson with alumni James Miervaldis and John NazelrodJHU Full time faculty Dr. Jen Bachner, Dr. Sarah O'Bryne and Karin OrrDoug Andres receiving recognition from Dr. HillDr. Richard Skinner and alum Charles Yarborough line up to ask a question.


MA in Government and MS in Government Analytics Highlighted in National Rankings

Congratulations to the Johns Hopkins University MA in Government and MS in Government Analytics for being honored as offering among the best online master's programs in political science.  Programs were assessed on a variety of factors, including salary potential and tuition, to determine which offered the best return on investment.  According to a summary of these national rankings:

Second-ranked Johns Hopkins University has a similarly impressive median salary for graduates at $110,700. Students at Johns Hopkins University can earn an MA in Government or an MS in Government Analytics with tuition starting at $23,382. 

Read more about this award here.


Join Us for a Midterm Election Return Party November 6!



GAB Forum: Using Analytics to Combat the Opioid Crisis

This month’s Government Analytics Breakfast forum featured a distinguished panel of experts to discuss how the public sector is using analytics to combat the opioid crisis.  The panel included:

  • Dr. Mona Siddiqui, MD, MPH – Chief Data Officer, US Department of Health and Human Services
  • Ms. Allison Oelschlaeger, Chief Data Officer, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
  • Dr. Jim Kyung-Soo Liew, Assistant Professor, Johns Hopkins University

One of the most important themes to emerge during the discussion was that the government is “data-rich and information-poor.”  In other words, the government collects a vast amount of data, but there are legal, technical and cultural hurdles to deriving useful conclusions from that data.  In terms of legal challenges, there are laws and regulations in place that protect individuals’ personal identifiable information.   This makes releasing individual-level data on, say, Medicare beneficiary prescriptions and health outcomes unfeasible.

The technical challenges are likewise difficult to address.  Datasets are often stored in difficult-to-use formats, including as PDFs.  Further, it is extremely time-consuming to link datasets from different agencies and organizations.

The cultural challenges are frequently rooted in concerns about sharing valuable data – in short, protecting one’s data “turf.”  As a result, data across the government and private sector are siloed.  Data officers at critical agencies and many in academia are working hard to build relationships to overcome these turf battles and promote data sharing.

A chief conclusion from the panel discussion is that there is a wealth of data that has been collected but a lack of infrastructure in place to share, analyze and interpret that data.  HHS, CMS and other agencies are, however, working very hard to put that infrastructure in place.   The panelists were extremely optimistic about the potential for using the data they’ve amassed to develop evidence-based recommendations that will remedy the opioid crisis.

A full recording of the event can be viewed here.     


You're Invited: 25th Anniversary Reception of the MA in Government Program