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Mary Eschelbach Hansen

Associate Professor Department of Economics

Mary Eschelbach Hansen is widely published in the fields of child welfare policy and economic history. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, and the Institute for New Economic Thinking.


PhD, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Favorite Spot on Campus
My office!

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CAS - Economics
Kreeger - 127
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Contact Info
(202) 885-3793 (Office)

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For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.
See Also
Department of Economics
Mary Hansen's Homepage

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Media Appearances

Op-ed, Washington Post, October 19, 2008: “Despite a Tragedy, Adoption Aid Remains Crucial.”

Interview, WAMU’s Metro Connection, October 10, 2008: “DC Remembers 1929.”

Interview on AARP’s Inside E Street, December 12, 2008: “Jobs Wanted: For Hire,” Segment: “Looking to the Past.”

Interview, The Economist, February 25, 2010: “Protecting the Weakest: Recession May Hurt America’s Vulnerable Children.”

Featured by Metro Connection/WAMU, Radio, “Changing Adoption Laws,” December 10, 2010.

Interview, Fortune, “Fast food worker strikes: After two years is there anything to show?” September 4, 2014.

Interview, CNN, “Is child poverty inevitable?” November 4, 2014.

Interview, LA times, “Obama pushes paid sick/family leave for workers,” January 16, 2015.

Interview, Sage Business Researcher, “Failure: What can businesses learn when things go wrong,” January 4, 2016.



Testimony before the Council of the District of Columbia, Committee on Human Services, Hearing on Extending Adoption and Guardianship Subsidies Until Age 21 and Expanding Guardianship Subsidies to Non-Kin, December 12, 2008, and March 4, 2010.

Testimony before the Federal District Court of Rhode Island re: Cassie M. v. Chaffee, December 9, 2013. See coverage in The Providence Journal, December 10, 2013.

Selected Publications

 "Using Subsidies to Promote the Adoption of Children from Foster Care," Journal of Family and Economic Issues 28, 2007, pp. 377-393, doi: 10.1007/s10834-007-9067-6.


"The Value of Adoption," Adoption Quarterly 10(2), 2007, pp. 65-87.  doi: 101300/J145v10n02_03.


"The Distribution of a Federal Entitlement: The Case of Adoption Assistance" Journal of Socio-Economics 37(6), December 2008, pp. 2427-2442. doi:10.1016/j.socec.2007.06.013.


 "Religion, Social Capital, and Business Bankruptcy, 1921-1932" (with Bradley Hansen), Business History 50(6), November 2008, pp. 714-727.  


"Raising the Cut-Off:  The Empirical Case for Extending Adoption and Guardianship Subsidies from Age 18 to 21" (with Josh Gupta-Kagan), forthcoming in Journal of Juvenile Law and Policy (anticipated Winter 2008).

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