Meg Jacobs is an associate professor of history at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Her research interests include twentieth-century American politics, political economy, and, most recently, the history of conservatism. Jacobs is currently completing a coauthored book about the Reagan revolution, forthcoming from Bedford Books.
At the Radcliffe Institute, Jacobs will finish a book on the energy crisis and the challenges of conservative governance since the 1970s, which will be published by Hill and Wang. She is investigating how conservatives in power, from Richard Nixon to George W. Bush, squared their antigovernment ideology with the demands of being in office. Specifically, she is writing a history of energy policy that explores how politicians and policymakers attempted to address a national crisis (soaring energy costs, fear of shortages, increasing dependence) without expanding the role of government in the marketplace.
Jacobs is the author of Pocketbook Politics: Economic Citizenship in Twentieth-Century America (Princeton University Press, 2005), which won the 2006 Ellis W. Hawley Prize, awarded by the Organization of American Historians for the best book-length historical study of the political economy, politics, or institutions of the United States from the Civil War to the present. She is also a coeditor of The Democratic Experiment: New Directions in American Political History (Princeton University Press, 2003). Jacobs earned her BA from Cornell University and her PhD in history from the University of Virginia.