Lee Badgett awarded $78,723 by the Albatross Fund

CPPA Director and Professor of Economics Lee Badgett was recently named a recipient for an Albatross Fund Award of $78,723 for a feasibility assessment of a Community-University Research and Outreach Center.

Econ Prof M.V. Lee Badgett
Econ Prof M.V. Lee Badgett

UMass Amherst Research Access – October Grants & Contracts Snapshot
Each month ACCESS includes a selection of grants and contracts awarded to faculty from across campus to provide a sense of what’s going on in research at UMass Amherst. These listings reflect only a small fraction of the total sponsored activity for any given month. Since this is just a snapshot in time and grant/contract terms vary, actual award totals may be higher than the amounts listed.

M. Lee Badgett
Sponsor: Albatross Fund
Title: Community-University Research and Outreach Center – Feasibility Assessment
Total Award: $78,723


Badgett Book Blogged by Belkin in NY Times

An interview with UMass Professor Lee Badgett on how the Dutch view same-sex marriage recently appeared in the New York Times.

Dutch Views on Same-Sex Marriage By LISA BELKIN (Motherlode, Adventures in Parenting, The New York Times)
When I wrote about same sex parenting in the Times Magazine this weekend, one of the people I interviewed was M. V. Lee Badgett, who is both the director of the Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation Law & Public Policy at the UCLA School of Law and a professor of Economics at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. She is also the author of “When Gay People Get Married: What Happens When Societies Legalize Same-Sex Marriage,” which focuses mostly on data from the Netherlands, where same-sex marriage has been legal for nearly a decade…

Q. What is the “take away” for those who are debating these questions in the U.S.?
A. The big point is that all of the evidence suggests that same-sex couples will fit right into our current understanding of marriage in the U.S. Marriage itself will not be affected…

Professor Badgett’s book When Gay People Get Married: What Happens When Societies Legalize Same-Sex Marriage is published by NYU Press.


Lee Badgett to present Distinguished Faculty Lecture

MVL_BadgettM. V. Lee Badgett of the Department of Economics and Center for Public Policy and Administration has been chosen to present a Distinguished Faculty Lecture.   Her presentation, entitled “From I Can’t To I Do: When Gay People Get Married,” will be held on Monday, November 9th at 4:00 pm in the Bernie Dallas Room, Goodell Building. Free and open to all.  A reception follows the lecture.  Professor Badgett will receive the Chancellor’s Medal, the highest honor bestowed on individuals for exemplary and extraordinary service to the campus. The lecture series is sponsored by the offices of the Chancellor and the Provost.

More information on Professor Badgett’s upcoming Distinguished Faculty Lecture at

Other appearances by Professor Badgett

THORNES MARKETPLACE: “Lesbian and Gay Families” – Discussion with authors Abbie Goldberg and Lee Badgett Thursday, October 22, 6 p.m., Impish, 2nd floor, 150 Main St., Northampton.


Badgett testimony moves California

Econ Professor and CPPA Director Badgett is the leading social scientist of the economic lives of gay men and lesbians.  Her expert testimony played a key role in the California State Supreme Court decision allowing same-sex marriage.

Badgett Plays Role in Golden State Decision on Nuptials

Lee Badgett

Professor Lee Badgett (economics and public policy), director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration and an expert on the economic characteristics of same-sex couples, played a pivotal role in the California court’s decision to allow same-sex marriage. Not only did she serve as an expert witness in the case, she also co-authored an amicus brief in support of gay marriage that was used numerous times in the California Supreme Court chief justice’s oral arguments on the economic characteristics of same-sex couples.

“The amicus brief made the point that same-sex couples are similarly situated financially to other couples,” Badgett says. “When you compare same-sex couples with kids to different-sex married couples with kids, they look very similar in financial terms and in terms of having a stay-at-home parent. The court’s decision picked up on this general point, noting that same-sex couples with kids have the same need for access to marriage that different-sex couples with kids would have.”

California—the second state to overturn a ban on same-sex marriage—could capitalize on Massachusetts’ mistakes, according to Badgett. She says California could experience an interstate wedding industry boom if it welcomes same-sex couples from across the country. Badgett sees something similar to when San Francisco briefly allowed same-sex marriages.

“Four years ago, when same-sex couples were married in San Francisco, couples from 46 different states flew to San Francisco to get married,”‘ says Badgett. “California is now in a position to get a state economic boost for the exact same thing.”

Badgett thinks Massachusetts has overlooked a potentially viable economic opportunity by not recognizing many out-of-state couples seeking to marry here. The Bay State only permits gay marriages for residents and residents of states where gay marriage is also allowed. “Massachusetts could have had that boost from out-of-town couples, but now that we have laws stating that if they are married here, they won’t necessarily be recognized in their home states,” Badgett says. “Simply put, we’re not letting same-sex couples marry from out of state.”

After an initial wedding boom, Badgett says California will likely return to a state of normalcy. “My prediction is that, if everything comes according to plan, I think that things will get back to normal very quickly,” Badgett says. “In California, people will begin to realize that the sky will not fall and that there will be couples that are very ecstatic about this decision.”

Overall, Badgett says, Thursday’s ruling is an important milestone for same-sex marriage. “It’s another indication that the world is changing and that the world is recognizing the need for equality,” Badgett says. “The other important thing is that it shows that domestic partnership is not equivalent to marriage.”

May 19, 2008

Adapted from an article in the Daily Hampshire Gazette (Northampton) by Andrew Horton, staff writer, that appeared on 5/16/2008.