Michael Gusmano, PhD

Professor, Department of Community and Population Health; Associate Dean, Academic Programs; Interim Director MPH
(610) 758-3116
Office: HST 150


Michael K. Gusmano is a Professor of Health Policy the College of Health at Lehigh  University. He also serves as the Associate Dean for Academic Programs, and the Director of the Center for Ethics at Lehigh. Along with his appointment at Lehigh, Dr. Gusmano is a research scholar at The Hastings Center. His scholarship focuses on health and social policy in the United States and internationally. His work, with Dr. Frank J. Thompson, on the role of executive federalism in the implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), won the best article award from Publius: The Journal of Federalism. He has published five peer-reviewed books, two online casebooks, six special issues of journals, and more than 200 scholarly and professional articles.  Dr. Gusmano is the Co-Director of the World Cities Project (WCP). WCP represents the first effort to compare the performance of health, social and long-term care systems in Hong Kong, London, Moscow, New Delhi, New York City, Paris, São Paulo, Shanghai and Tokyo. The project compares health status and quality of life, informal support and social networks, health and social services, and long-term care -- both within and among these cities. The first book from this project Growing Older in World Cities: New York, London, Paris and Tokyo (Vanderbilt University Press 2006), explored how cities are addressing the needs of their aging populations. The second book from the WCP, Health Care in World Cities (Johns Hopkins University Press 2010), documents the implications of national and local health care policies for access to care in New York, London and Paris.

In his most recent work, Dr. Gusmano has investigated the governance of new biological and medical technologies. He is the Co-PI (with Drs. Karen Maschke and Elisa Gordon) for “Informing Ethical Translation of Xenotransplantation Clinical Trials,” an R01 grant funded by the National Institutes of Health, National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences. His book with Karen Maschke, Debating Modern Medical Technologies: The Politics of Safety, Effectiveness and Patient Access (ABC-Clio/Praeger 2018). In the Governance of Emerging Technologies: Aligning Policy Analysis with the Public’s Values (https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/toc/1552146x/2018/48/S1), Gusmano and Dr. Gregory Kaebnick advance the understanding of how cost-benefit analysis handles the public’s values. Building on these findings, Gusmano and Kaebnick launched a new project focused on the role of public deliberation about gene editing in the wild, which investigates innovative approaches to engaging the public in deliberations about new technologies (https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/hast.1314https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/hast.1314). Both of the projects with Dr. Kaebnick were funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and, thanks to the NSF, the Special Issues of The Hastings Center Report listed above are available on an open access basis.

He holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Maryland at College Park and a Masters in public policy from the State University of New York at Albany. He was also post-doctoral fellow in the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Scholars in Health Policy program at Yale University (1995-1997). He serves as the International Editor of the Journal of Aging and Social Policy, Associate Editor for Health Economics, Policy and Law, and is on the board of editors of the Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, World Medical & Health Policy, and the editorial committee of the Hastings Center Report. Gusmano received his doctorate in political science from the University of Maryland College Park in 1995.


  • Yale University, Post-Doctorate
  • University of Maryland at College Park, Ph.D. and M.A.
  • State University of New York at Albany, M.A. and B.A.