Education General

George W. Bush Institute-SMU Economic Growth Initiative Launched June 1

The George W. Bush Institute and SMU announced they are joining forces to launch the Bush Institute-SMU Economic Growth Initiative, which launched on June 1. This effort will combine the existing Economic Growth Initiative of the Bush Institute with the public policy-relevant work of the SMU Department of Economics. The objective is to build the initiative into a globally respected policy voice on the most pressing economic issues of our time.

“We have developed a close and successful relationship with SMU since the establishment of the Bush Institute nine years ago, and we are thrilled to partner with SMU on this joint initiative,” said Kenneth Hersh, President and CEO of the Bush Center. “Since its inception, the Bush Institute’s Economic Growth Initiative has promoted pro-growth economic policies on issues like trade and immigration. The addition of SMU will add a nationally recognized research partner to our work. Importantly, we will also be able to add expertise to broaden our scope.”

The Bush Institute-SMU Economic Growth Initiative will promote policies to support domestic economic growth and strengthen our competitiveness in the global economy. The initiative will also highlight the benefits of continuing American economic leadership, global trade, immigration, and the economic vitality of cities and regions in our country.

The new combined initiative will be supported by the George W. Bush Presidential Center Endowment at SMU that was established to support joint programming as well as funding from the Bush Institute, thereby enabling its work to begin immediately.

“As the Bush Center was being developed and constructed, it was crucial to create an endowment that would ensure funding for the University to participate in joint programing,” said R. Gerald Turner, President of SMU. “The SMU Department of Economics and the Bush Institute’s Economic Growth Initiative are complementary centers of excellence whose collaboration will create very visible, research-based contributions to the dialogue regarding economic growth in our country and in North America.”

“The Initiative combines the Bush Institute’s action-oriented approach to policy and its extraordinary convening ability with SMU’s research and academic excellence, particularly in economics,” said Holly Kuzmich, Executive Director of the Bush Institute and Senior Vice President of the Bush Center.

Steve Currall, SMU’s Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs said, “The new Initiative will leverage synergies between the Bush Institute’s global visibility on economic policy and world-leading economic analysis by SMU’s Department of Economics and other academic units on our campus such as the Cox School of Business.  SMU’s faculty and students will benefit from the intellectual exchange with the Initiative’s leadership to advance thoughtful analyses and innovative solutions to promote economic growth domestically and globally.”

The Bush Institute’s Director of Economic Growth, Matthew Rooney, and the Deputy Director, Laura Collins, will be joined in the initiative by Dr. Cullum Clark, Adjunct Professor of Economics at SMU, who will serve as a director.


Housed within the George W. Bush Presidential Center, the George W. Bush Institute is an action-oriented, nonpartisan policy organization with the mission of developing leaders, advancing policy, and taking action to solve today’s most pressing challenges. The work is achieved through three Impact Centers – Domestic Excellence, Global Leadership, and the Engagement Agenda – by which the Bush Institute engages the greater community with its important work. Find out more on the organization’s website.


For more than 100 years, SMU has shaped minds, explored the frontiers of knowledge and fostered an entrepreneurial spirit in its seven degree-granting schools. Taking advantage of unbridled experiences on the University’s beautiful campuses and SMU’s relationship with Dallas, the dynamic center of one of the nation’s fastest-growing regions, alumni, faculty and nearly 12,000 graduate and undergraduate students become ethical leaders in their professions and communities who change the world. Find out more on the SMU website. publishes every week.
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