Milken Institute

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The Milken Institute
The Milken Institute
Formation1991; 31 years ago (1991)
TypeEconomic Think tank
HeadquartersSanta Monica, California, United States
Region served
LeaderMichael Milken (Founder and Chairman)
Michael Klowden (CEO)
Revenue (2016)
Expenses (2016)$42,559,621[1]

The Milken Institute is an independent economic think tank based in Santa Monica, California. It publishes research and hosts conferences that apply market-based principles and financial innovations to social issues in the US and internationally. The Institute is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and presents itself as nonpartisan and non-ideological.


The institute was founded in 1991 by Michael Milken, a former Drexel Burnham Lambert banker who gained notoriety for significant financial success as a pioneer of "junk bonds" as well as his subsequent felony conviction and prison sentence for U.S. securities law violations.[2][3]


The mission of the Institute is "to improve the lives and economic conditions of diverse populations in the United States and around the world by helping business and public policy leaders identify and implement innovative ideas for creating broad-based prosperity."

It focuses on human capital (talent, knowledge and experience and their value to organizations, economies and society), financial capital (investments) and social capital (bonds of society that underlie economic development, including schools, health care, cultural institutions and government services). It employs about 50 people.

The institute hosts the Milken Conference, an annual event often attended by high profile individuals in finance, politics, and business.[4]


The Institute has published studies relating to human capital, access to capital, financial structures and innovations, regional economics, healthcare economics and medical research. It hosts a series of conferences including two annual conferences, a variety of financial innovation labs and a series of forums and private events. The Milken Institute Global Conference, first held in 1998, is an annual forum focused on economic and social issues. Speakers include figures from business, finance, government, education and sports. The institute also hosts an annual State of the State Conference, which examines major issues facing the state of California.

The Institute operates a series of centers focused on particular economic and health related topics. The centers are: The Asia Center,[5] The California Center,[6] FasterCures,[7] The Center for Financial Markets,[8] The Center for the Future of Aging,[9] The Center for Jobs and Human Capital,[10] The Lynda and Stewart Resnick Center for Public Health,[11] and The Center for Strategic Philanthropy.[12]

Notable reports include:

  • An Unhealthy America: The Economic Burden of Chronic Disease.[13] This report was updated with Checkup Time: Chronic Disease and Wellness in America.[14]
  • Best-Performing Cities 2013.[15]
  • The Future of Higher Education and How America Will Pay For It.[16]
  • Best Cities for Successful Aging.[17]

Tax policy[edit]

The Institute has held several events regarding opportunity zones created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. In May 2018, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin instructed his staff to accept a non-low-income tract in Storey County, Nevada as an Opportunity Zone shortly after attending an Institute event in Beverly Hills with Michael Milken.[18] Milken was already an investor in the Nevada tract.[18] In August 2018, Mnuchin attended an Institute conference on opportunity zones in the Hamptons with Milken and later accepted a flight to Los Angeles with Milken on his private jet.[18] Treasury later issued a regulatory guidance at the Institute's request that allows prior investors to benefit from newly designated opportunity zones.[18]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "The Milken Institute" (PDF). Foundation Center. Retrieved 2 August 2019.
  2. ^ [1] January 22, 2001 article by Associated Press Business Writer, Gary Gentile
  3. ^ SEC government newsletter of April 24, 1990
  4. ^ "Milken conference celebrates capitalism amid a rising tide of inequality". Los Angeles Times. 2019-04-27. Retrieved 2020-01-24.
  5. ^ "Asia » Milken Institute".
  6. ^ "California » Milken Institute".
  7. ^ "FasterCures » Milken Institute".
  8. ^ "Markets » Milken Institute".
  9. ^ "Future of Aging » Milken Institute".
  10. ^ "Jobs and Human Capital » Milken Institute".
  11. ^ "Public Health » Milken Institute".
  12. ^ "Strategic Philanthropy » Milken Institute".
  13. ^ "Research Report - An Unhealthy America: The Economic Burden of Chronic Disease -- » Milken Institute".
  14. ^ "Research Report - Checkup Time: Chronic Disease and Wellness in America » Milken Institute".
  15. ^ "Research Report - Best-Performing Cities 2013 » Milken Institute".
  16. ^ "Research Report - The Future of Higher Education and How America Will Pay For It » Milken Institute".
  17. ^ "Research Report - Best Cities for Successful Aging » Milken Institute".
  18. ^ a b c d Lipton, Eric; Drucker, Jesse (27 October 2019). "Symbol of '80s Greed Stands to Profit From Trump Tax Break for Poor Areas". The New York Times. p. A1. Retrieved 1 November 2019.

External links[edit]