Bruce K. Johnson

James Graham Brown Professor of Economics

Offices & Programs


BA - Transylvania University
PhD - The University of Virginia

Bruce K. Johnson joined the faculty in 1987 and has been the James Graham Brown Professor of Economics since 1992. He also holds the Marlene and David Grissom Professorship in the Social Studies 2019-2022.

In addition to core courses in economics such as economic principles, microeconomics, and econometrics, Johnson has taught a wide variety of electives, including experimental economics, urban economics, and the economics of sports.

His research has focused mostly on the economics of sports, especially sports and public policy. He is co-author of the seminal articles applying non-market valuation techniques to the benefit cost analysis of public subsidies for sports projects such as stadiums and arenas. His research has been published in journals such as Contemporary Economic Policy, Economic Inquiry, Southern Economic Journal, and Journal of Sports Economics. He has also contributed chapters to books published by Oxford University Press, the Brookings Institution, Syracuse University Press, and others. His research has been reported by the Washington Post and Business Week, and he has been interviewed by reporters from around the country.

He has been a contributing columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader, and his numerous opinion pieces applying economic analysis to current events have appeared in newspapers across the country, including USA Today, the Boston Globe, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Charlotte Observer, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, the Cincinnati Enquirer, and the Louisville Courier-Journal.

He is also a contributing author of the current (7th) edition of a leading undergraduate textbook, Using Econometrics: A Practical Guide, by A.H. Studenmund.

Johnson was visiting professor of economics at the University of Virginia in 2001-02 and 2010. During the 1993-94 academic year and during the spring semesters of 2001, 2006, 2011, and 2018 he directed the Centre-in-London program.

Since 2006 he has been a member of the Consensus Forecasting Group, the nonpartisan panel of economists charged with developing the official forecast of state government revenues for the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

He holds a B.A. from Transylvania University and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Virginia.

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