About Us

One of six centers funded by the Social Security Administration

The Michigan Retirement and Disability Research Center (MRDRC) serves as a national resource fostering high-quality research, communication, and education related to Social Security, pension, and disability and retirement related policies. The MRDRC is one of four centers funded by the Social Security Administration as part of a consortium whose purpose is to benefit the public through three sets of activities:

Conduct research and develop research data

Disseminate information on retirement, disability, and SSA-related social policy

Train scholars and practitioners

MRDRC meets these goals through its many activities, including research projects, policy briefs and working papers, involvement of young scholars in research activities, and an annual Retirement and Disability Research Consortium conference. Workshops and round-table discussions are organized throughout the year on specific topics of interest to both researchers and policymakers.
grandfather and granddaughter on bench
mother and daughter

History and Inception

The Retirement and Disability Research Consortium (RDRC), formerly the Retirement Research Consortium (RRC), consists of six multidisciplinary centers housed in six separate institutions: University of Michigan, Boston College, University of Wisconsin, and the National Bureau of Economic Research. In FY24, the New York Social Security Research Consortium and University of Maryland-Baltimore County established new centers. The RDR centers are funded through cooperative agreements with the Social Security Administration (SSA). SSA’s Office of Research Evaluation and Statistics coordinates the consortium.
An article in the MRDRC Quarterly Bulletin tells how the RRC and the Steven H. Sandell Grant Program came about. Read more about the RRC’s history and research contributions in “The Retirement Research Consortium: Past, Present, and Future,” in the Social Security Bulletin. Read additional articles about the consortium in the Social Security Bulletin, vol. 69, No. 4.
By creating and continuing to support the Retirement and Disability Research Consortium, the SSA has taken an important step toward stimulating its research capabilities beyond internal staff and providing national leadership on retirement policy issues.

What We Do

The Michigan Retirement and Disability Research Center (MRDRC) promotes high quality research on retirement, disability, and Social Security policy; communicates findings to the policy community and the public; enhances access to relevant research data; and helps to train new scholars.  MRDRC serves the public and policy community as an authoritative source of information on a range of issues related to disability policy and retirement income security. Read more about our research priorities and view current projects.