John Z. Ayanian, M.D., M.P.P., is the inaugural director of the Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation (IHPI) — one of the world's largest groups of healthcare and health policy researchers, involving more than 600 experts from across the University of Michigan and partner organizations. He also serves as the Alice Hamilton Distinguished University Professor of Medicine and Healthcare Policy in the U-M Medical School, professor of health management and policy in the School of Public Health, and professor of public policy in the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.

At the U-M, Ayanian leads an institute whose members, like him, mine vast quantities of health care data to assess the impact of policy, payment and practice changes on patients' health. From diabetes, cancer and heart disease to mental health, children's health and hospital care, IHPI members study issues related to a broad range of conditions. His research is focused on effects of race, ethnicity, gender and insurance coverage on access to care and clinical outcomes, and the impact of physician specialty and organizational characteristics on the quality of care for cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, kidney disease, and other major health conditions.

He has led numerous studies assessing access to care, quality of care, and health care disparities. Ayanian came to the U-M from Harvard Medical School, where he served as professor of medicine and professor of health care policy. He also was a professor in health policy and management at the Harvard School of Public Health, and a practicing primary care physician at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. From 2008-13, he directed the Health Disparities Research Program of Harvard Catalyst, Harvard's Clinical and Translational Sciences Center, the Outcomes Research Program of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center, and the Harvard Medical School Fellowship in General Medicine and Primary Care.

Ayanian graduated from Duke University, Harvard Medical School, and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. After a residency in internal medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital, he completed fellowships in general internal medicine and health services research at Harvard. He began his faculty career at Harvard in 1992. Elected to the National Academy of Medicine, the American Society for Clinical Investigation, and the Association of American Physicians, he also is a Master of the American College of Physicians. In 2012, he received the John M. Eisenberg Award for Career Achievement in Research from the Society of General Internal Medicine, and in 2017 he received the Distinguished Investigator Award from AcademyHealth. In 2019 the University of Michigan named him a Distinguished University Professor. Ayanian also serves as the founding Editor in Chief of JAMA Health Forum.