University of Michigan Survey of Consumers Announces Leadership Change

Joanne Hsu, Richard Curtin // Courtesy of the University of Michigan
Joanne Hsu, Richard Curtin // Courtesy of the University of Michigan

Joanne Hsu, a principal economist at the Federal Reserve Board, will succeed Richard Curtin as director of the University of Michigan’s Surveys of Consumers.

Curtin has served as the director of the Surveys of Consumers in the Survey Research Center at the Institute for Social Research since 1976, after receiving his Ph.D. from U-M in 1975.

Since then, he has authored more than 1,200 monthly and quarterly reports on consumer behavior and attitudes, many of which have been widely referenced by national and international media. Curtin’s findings have been cited as many as 100,000 times per year, generating more citations than any other research project at U-M in that span.

Hsu assumes leadership of the Surveys of Consumers after serving in a variety of positions with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, including her most recent role as a principal economist. While there, she worked in the division of research and statistics, overseeing a policy portfolio that included the administration of the Survey of Consumer Finances.

Hsu also worked as a consumption analyst, contributing key information on consumption to the GDP forecast. She received the Special Achievement Award from the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in 2018.

“I am honored to lead an endeavor that has been so critical to our understanding of the economy for over 75 years,” says Hsu.

Hsu received her doctorate in economics from U-M in 2011. Her research to date has focused on consumer behavior, including the roles public policy and cognition play in consumer decisions.

“We are delighted that Joanne Hsu has joined the Survey Research Center as its new
director of the Surveys of Consumers,” says Matthew Shapiro, director of the Survey Research Center and the Lawrence R. Klein Collegiate Professor of Economics at U-M.

“She brings a wealth of experience to the Surveys of Consumers. Through her work on the Federal Reserve Board Survey of Consumer Finances, she is an established scholar of consumer behavior and practitioner of survey methods.”