Ronald J. Daniels, LLM, JD
Ronald J. Daniels, LLM, JD, is the 14th president of Johns Hopkins University and a professor in the Department of Political Science.
Since taking office in 2009, Daniels has focused his leadership on three overarching themes–enhanced interdisciplinary collaboration, individual excellence and community engagement. These themes are the backbone of the Ten by Twenty, the university’s strategic vision through 2020, and underscore the priorities of Rising to the Challenge, Johns Hopkins’ largest-ever fundraising campaign, a $4.5 billion effort.
Under Daniels’ leadership, the university has launched a series of transformative, multidisciplinary initiatives that seek to advance the understanding of some of society’s most vexing issues, from realizing the promise of individualized health to addressing the challenges facing urban environments. With the extraordinary support of Johns Hopkins alumnus Michael Bloomberg, the university began recruiting 50 new Bloomberg Distinguished Professors whose appointments in two or more divisions create bridges between diverse departments. Daniels is also championing a universitywide vision for innovation, bolstering the efforts of faculty, staff, and students to translate their discoveries into novel technologies. As chair of the Executive Committee of Johns Hopkins Medicine, Daniels serves as a link between the university and Johns Hopkins Health System.
During his tenure, the university has invested heavily in student access, increasing the undergraduate financial aid budget by roughly 10 percent each year since 2010 and committing millions of dollars to graduate stipend supplements for doctoral candidates in Arts and Sciences. From launching the Gateway Science Initiative, designed to transform the traditional core undergraduate science curriculum, to establishing the first university-wide board to advocate for and support PhD programs, Daniels and his leadership team have worked to strengthen the student experience. Asserting that Johns Hopkins is “truly and proudly of Baltimore,” Daniels has been personally involved in an ambitious $1.8 billion revitalization plan in East Baltimore. This enterprise includes a pioneering public school called the Henderson-Hopkins School that the Johns Hopkins School of Education began operating in 2011.
Under Daniels’ leadership, Johns Hopkins also worked with nearly 200 local stakeholders to launch the Homewood Community Partners Initiative aimed at fostering physical, social and economic well-being in 10 neighborhoods and one commercial district around the Homewood campus. A law and economics scholar, Daniels’ research focuses on the intersections of law, economics, development, and public policy in areas such as corporate and securities law, social and economic regulation, and the role of law and legal institutions in promoting third-world development.
His recent writing has focused on advocating for young investigators in American life-science research and on the role of the research university in promoting community development. He is the author or co-author of seven books and dozens of scholarly articles, as well as a fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. Before coming to Johns Hopkins, he was provost and professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania and dean and James M. Tory Professor of Law at the University of Toronto. Daniels earned an LLM from Yale University in 1988 and a JD in 1986 from the University of Toronto, where he served as co-editor-in-chief of the law review. He received a BA from the University of Toronto in 1982, graduating with high distinction. He has been visiting professor and Coca-Cola World Fellow at Yale Law School and John M. Olin Visiting Fellow at Cornell Law School.