Emily Ekins

Emily Ekins

Research Fellow and Director of Polling

Cato Institute

Emily Ekins is a research fellow and director of polling at the Cato Institute. Her research focuses on public opinion, American politics, political psychology, and social movements. 

She leads the Cato Institute project on public opinion in which she designs and conducts national public opinion surveys and experiments. She is the author of Policing in America: Understanding Public Attitudes toward the Police, which investigates the drivers of public opinion toward the police and reform. Ekins’ other publications include The Libertarian Roots of the Tea Party and Public Attitudes toward Federalism: The Public’s Preference for a Renewed Federalism.

Before joining Cato, she spent four years as the director of polling for Reason Foundation where she conducted national public opinion polls and published specialized research studies. In 2014, Ekins authored an in-depth study of young Americans, “Millennials: The Politically Unclaimed Generation.” Prior to joining Reason, Ekins worked as a research associate at Harvard Business School, where she co-authored several Harvard Business Case Studies and helped design and conduct research experiments and surveys.

She has discussed her research on Fox News and Fox Business, and her research has appeared in The Washington Post, Politico, The Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, and The Washington Times. Ekins is an active member of the American Association of Public Opinion Research and the American Political Science Association.

She holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in political science from the University of California, Los Angeles.

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