Douglas Wolf

Aging Studies Institute, Syracuse University

Douglas Wolf is the Gerald B. Cramer Professor of Aging Studies and a Professor of Public Administration and International Affairs at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. His research addresses a range of topics in the demography of families and aging and in patterns and dynamics of late-life disability. He has published several articles on the nature and consequences of adult children’s provision of care for their disabled parents, and in a recently published paper showed how genetic variation influences the mental-health status of family caregivers. In other work, he is developing new methods for quantifying “active life expectancy,” an indicator of the proportion of a cohort’s remaining lifetime is spent without a disability. His work has been published in demographic, gerontological, public health, economic, and public administration journals, and has been supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health as well as other government agencies and private foundations. He has a PhD in Public Policy Analysis from the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to his appointment at Syracuse University, Wolf worked in the office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare), at the Urban Institute, and at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis. 


State pre-emption is an emerging and highly contentious policy movement with potentially significant consequences on population health. Yet robust analyses to examine whether pre-emption affects health have yet to be conducted. Furthermore, pre-emption’s effect on geographic inequities in health has been largely neglected in policy debates. But it is becoming increasingly clear that state pre-emption laws could reshape the spatial distribution of health, with profound consequences for health care delivery systems and state and local budgets.