Lawrence M. Mead

AEI Adjunct Scholar

Lawrence Mead teaches American politics and public policy at New York University. Known as one of the theoretical architects of the welfare reform of the 1990s, he has written several influential books in which he demonstrates that mandatory work requirements are essential to sound welfare policy. While at AEI, he researched how to institute a work requirement for nonworking poor men comparable to the work tests that were instituted for poor single mothers in previous welfare reforms.


  • Professor of Politics, Associate Professor, Assistant Professor, New York University, 1979-present
  • John L. Weinberg/Goldman Sachs & Co. Visiting Professor, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University, 1994-95
  • Visiting Professor of Public Policy, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, 1993-94
  • Deputy Director of Research, Republican National Committee, 1978-79
  • Research Associate, Urban Institute, 1975-78
  • Speechwriter to Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger, U.S. Department of State, 1974-75
  • Policy Analyst, U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, 1973-75


Ph.D., M.A., political science, Harvard University
B.A., political science, Amherst College