John Ligon focuses his research on dynamic economic modeling of federal public policy as a senior policy analyst at The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Data Analysis. His policy research and writing analyzes the economic effects of federal tax, energy, regulatory, housing and housing finance policies.
As a member of the team in the Center for Data Analysis (CDA), Ligon helps maintain scores of databases to support strategic research; provide confidential reviews of legislation for members of Congress; and supply data and analysis for new organizations. He runs a large-scale, structural model of the U.S. economy to dynamically estimate how federal policy changes affect the economy.
Ligon’s research on the “dynamic scoring” of federal tax legislation led to fulfillment of a long-term goal for Heritage and CDA. His research (with co-author and CDA Director Rea S. Hederman Jr.) was cited by Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) during Senate floor debate over Democrats’ budget for 2014. The debate led to an amendment requiring the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to include such dynamic scoring.
Ligon has testified before Congress on his research studying the economic effects of eliminating Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two government-sponsored housing finance entities. His research and commentary have been cited by organizations such as the National Center for Policy Analysis and appeared in publications and online news venues such as Financial Times, USA Today, HousingWire and National Review Online.
He is an active member of the National Association for Business Economics and the National Economists Club.
Before joining Heritage in 2009, Ligon was a graduate research assistant in health policy at Syracuse University. He holds master’s degrees in economics and public administration, along with a certificate of advanced study in health management and policy, from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. He received his bachelor's degree in economics, with honors, in 2004 from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.Ligon, a native of Las Vegas, currently resides with his wife in Washington, D.C.