University of Southern California

John Matsusaka
Charles F. Sexton Chair in American Enterprise, Professor of Finance and Business Economics, & Executive Director of Initiative and Referendum Institute

USC Marshall School of Business
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0804

PhD, MA, University of Chicago; BA, University of Washington


John Matsusaka is an expert on direct democracy and corporate organization who publishes in economics, finance, law, and political science. He is the author of For the Many or the Few: The Initiative, Public Policy, and American Democracy. Professor Matsusaka provides commentary to media outlets including ABC News, CNN, Fox News, NPR, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, and Los Angeles Times. He is executive director of the Initiative and Referendum Institute, held visiting appointments at Stanford, UCLA, Caltech, and University of Chicago, and consulted for the White House Council of Economic Advisors.


Ozbas, O., and Matsusaka, J. G. (2014) "Managerial Accommodation, Proxy Access, and the Cost of Shareholder Empowerment,".
Ozbas, O., Duchin, R., and Matsusaka, J. G. (2010) "When Are Outside Directors Effective?," Journal of Financial Economics, 96, 195-214.
Matsusaka, J. G. (2009) "Direct Democracy and Public Employees," American Economic Review.
Matsusaka, J. G. (2009) "From Families to Formal Contracts: An Approach to Development," Journal of Development Economics.
Matsusaka, J. G., "Direct Democracy and the Executive Branch," in Direct Democracy's Impact on American Political Institutions 2008.
Matsusaka, J. G., For the Many or the Few: The Initiative, Public Policy, and American Democracy, University of Chicago Press 2004.
Matsusaka, J. G., and McCarty, N. M. (2001) "Political Resource Allocation: Benefits and Costs of Voter Initiatives," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization.
Matsusaka, J. G. (2001) "Corporate Diversification, Value Maximization, and Organizational Capabilities," Journal of Business.
Matsusaka, J. G. (1995) "Fiscal Effects of the Voter Initiative: Evidence from the Last 30 Years," Journal of Political Economy.
Matsusaka, J. G. (1993) "Takeover Motives during the Conglomerate Merger Wave," RAND Journal of Economics.
Matsusaka, J. G. (1992) "Economics of Direct Legislation," Quarterly Journal of Economics.
Matsusaka, J. G. "Disentangling the Direct and Indirect Effects of the Initiative Process," Public Choice.