The Institute for Policy & Social Research is a faculty-driven research center supporting social scientists who focus on social problems and policy-relevant questions. IPSR fosters independent researchers and collaborative teams within our network of faculty affiliates and eight interdisciplinary research centers.

What's New

New NSF grant to fund water management data ecosystem in Kansas

The U.S. National Science Foundation Convergence Accelerator has awarded $650,000 to a team led by University of Kansas scientists to develop a water management data ecosystem that collects water quality and quantity data, models it with machine learning algorithms, and makes insights available on a dashboard for local government officials and state government agencies. KU researchers will work with Viaanix, an Internet of Things technology company, and officials from the Kansas Water Office for the project, titled "Improving Water Quality and Equity through Sensor Data and Machine Learning Models."

Book examines history of standardized tests, why they persist

For the past 50 years, standardized tests have been the norm in American schools, a method proponents say determines which schools are not performing and helps hold educators accountable. Yet for the past 20 years, it has become clear that testing has failed to improve education or hold many accountable, according to a University of Kansas researcher whose new book details its history. "An Age of Accountability: How Standardized Testing Came to Dominate American Schools and Compromise Education" by John Rury, professor emeritus of educational leadership & policy studies at KU, tells the story of how testing became a central focus of American education policy roughly from 1970 to 2020.

Kansas Economic Policy Conference to address urgent workforce needs

Each year, the Kansas Economic Policy Conference convenes community and industry leaders, policymakers and scholars. On Oct. 19, the conference will address workforce needs for Kansas.

Please visit IPSR's News page for more.

Research Spotlight

Research Released on the Cost of Not Expanding Medicaid in Kansas

Kansas is one of only 12 states that
have not expanded Medicaid under
the Affordable Care Act, despite the
federal government covering more
than 90 percent of the cost along
with additional federal incentives.
Kansas is now entirely bordered
by states that expanded Medicaid
following adoption of expansion in
Missouri and Oklahoma in 2021.

The REACH Healthcare Foundation provided funding to IPSR to study the impact of failure to expand Medicaid on Kansans. The research brief and report show that Kansans are spending more state resources on Medicaid, health care spending is increasing at a faster rate, and employee premiums for health care are increasing faster in Kansas than in states that expanded Medicaid. County mill levies for hospitals have also increased. There are many unexpected costs resulting from the state’s failure to expand Medicaid.

Kansas Statistical Abstract 2022   
The 57th Edition of the Kansas Statistical Abstract is now available! The abstract is available EXCLUSIVELY online as a PDF file with individual pages available in Microsoft Excel and PDF. For more information and access to the data, please visit

The Kansas Statistical Abstract was featured in a radio spot on the Jayhawk Radio Network, tune in or click the button below to play the clip now:

2023 Kansas Economic Policy Conference

2023 Kansas Economic Policy Conference

Thursday, October 19, 2023

Please check the conference site soon for recordings from the conference.

Recent Publications

Ginther, Donna K., Davut Ayan, and David J.G. Slusky, The Unexpected Costs of Not Expanding Medicaid in Kansas, sponsored by the REACH Foundation, May 2022.

Ayan, Davut, Donna K. Ginther, and David J.G. Slusky, Economic Costs to Kansas Due to State’s Failure to Expand Medicaid, sponsored by the REACH Foundation, May 2022.

The Governor's Council on Tax Reform, Final Report, January 2022.

Ginther, Donna K., Genna Hurd, Xan Wedel, Thomas Becker, and Patricia Oslund, The Status of Women in Kansas, sponsored by United WE, January 2022.

Ginther, Donna K, Nancy Cayton Myers, Thomas Becker, Lindsay Elliot Jorgenson, "Growing New Ventures and Jobs in Kansas: An in-depth Review of Entrepreneurship Activities and Policies in Kansas and How We Compare." Institute for Policy & Social Research, The University of Kansas (January 2020).

Maynard-Moody, Steven with Charles Epp and Donald Haider-Markel,“Beyond Profiling: The Institutional Sources of Racial Disparities in Policing,” Public Administration Review (forthcoming).

Maynard-Moody, Steven, “Punishing the Poor.” Book review essay, Social Service Review, vol. 90, no. 4 (Dec 2016).

Maynard-Moody, Steven with Michael Musheno, “'Playing the Rules’: Discretion Social and Policy Context”. In Peter Hupe, Michael Hill, and Aurélien Buffat, eds., Understanding Street-Level Bureaucrats (Bristol, UK: The Policy Press, 2016).

For other publications please visit our Publications Page.

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