Michael J. Hicks

Associate Professor of Economics, Ball State University

Hicks came to Ball State following stints at the Air Force Institute of Technology’s Graduate School of Engineering and Management and research centers at Marshall University and the University of Tennessee. 

Hicks’ research has focused on issues affecting local and state economics.  His work on the effects of federal regulation of energy and mining industries has resulted in testimony in state and federal courts and the U.S. Senate.  His work in modeling flood and hurricane damages has received a number of awards and been heavily reported.  While he studies such diverse issues as local telecommunication de-regulation, state tax incentives and local government consolidation, he is best known for his research on Wal-Mart’s effect on local economies.  He has authored one book on Wal-Mart and papers on the subject in the Eastern Economics Journal, Atlantic Economics Journal, Economic Development Journal, Regional Economic Development, Journal of Private Enterprise and Review of Regional Studies.  

Hicks received research and teaching awards from Tennessee, Marshall, AFIT and Ball State, and his research has been highlighted in such outlets as the Wall Street JournalNew York Times andWashington Post.  He has appeared nationally on CSPAN, MSNBC, NPR’s “All Things Considered” and Fox Business News.  His weekly column on economics and current events is distributed through newspapers including the Indianapolis Business Journal, the South Bend Tribune and The Star Press.

Hicks earned doctoral and master’s degrees in economics from the University of Tennessee and a bachelor’s degree in economics from Virginia Military Institute. He is an infantry lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserves, having served in combat and peacekeeping operations in North Africa, Southwest Asia, Korea and Japan.

Since its inception in 1970, Ball State’s Center for Business and Economic Research, formerly the Bureau of Business Research, has supported business faculty and provided Indiana’s business community with research resources.