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Robert J. McGrath

Assistant Professor



Research Hall Room 344, MSN: 3F4
4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030




Rob McGrath is an Assistant Professor of Government and Politics at George Mason University. He holds a PhD in political science from the University of Iowa and a BA from Saint Peter’s College in his native New Jersey and spent two years (2013-2015) as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Scholar in Health Policy Research at the University of Michigan. Dr. McGrath specializes in American politics and quantitative political methodology and researches and teaches topics in American and comparative political institutions (legislatures, executives, and bureaucracies), public administration, and health policy. 

His research tends to focus on how formal and informal governmental institutions interact to create policy outcomes in democratic systems of government. As such, his research gravitates towards the study of U.S. state politics and assesses how political reforms and institutional characteristics across the states affect the policy process, as well as important political, economic, and health outcomes. Current large-scale projects (i.e., spanning multiple papers/articles) include empirical examinations of the volume, content, and timing of state rulemaking (with Graeme Boushey, University of California, Irvine), explorations of how political inequalities drive state gaps between the health of the wealthy and the health of the poor (with Bill Franko, Auburn University), and assessments of congressional strategies to affect federal agency policymaking (with Jason MacDonald, West Virginia University).

Areas of Research

  • Federalism/State and Local Government
  • Health Policy
  • Legislatures
  • Presidency and Executive Branch
  • Quantitative Methods