U-M Firearm Injury Prevention Signature


“The focus is not on gun control, but rather on injury prevention. We did not halve automobile deaths by taking cars off the road, but rather by making them and their drivers safer.”

— Rebecca Cunningham, Vice President for Research

The Institute for Firearm Injury Prevention

Launched as a presidential initiative in 2019, the institute engages the breadth of expertise across the University of Michigan, with input from nonacademic stakeholders, to generate knowledge and advance solutions that will decrease firearm injury across the United States — all while respecting the rights of responsible, law-abiding firearm owners.

Based in the Office of the Vice President for Research, the institute fosters collaboration among researchers in disciplines ranging from the social sciences and the arts to engineering and public health so that, together, they can formulate and answer critical questions about firearm injury prevention.

Institutional Structure and Charge →
Team members planning

The university is uniquely positioned to address this public health crisis because of its vast research expertise across disciplines and its strong partnerships with external stakeholders.

  • A $10 million university commitment over the next five years will increase firearm injury prevention research and scholarship across U-M and also expand the research pipeline so that more individuals can study this public health crisis.
  • The institute explores firearm injuries across the lifespan, including suicide, community violence, domestic violence, peer violence and police violence, as well as disparities in susceptibility to firearm injuries by race, gender, geographic location and socioeconomic status.
  • An external stakeholder committee ensures the institute has a diversity of nonpartisan perspectives beyond academia, and its members may include firearm owners, religious and school leaders, law enforcement, and rural and urban community groups. An internal advisory committee composed of deans and faculty provides guidance on strategic priorities and fosters collaboration across disciplines.
  • The university’s leadership in this space is illustrated by the fact that U-M researchers have secured more federal funding to study firearm injury prevention than any other academic institution nationwide.
aerial photo of Ann Arbor
By developing a stronger infrastructure for research, educational activities and community outreach around firearm injury prevention, U-M can address the complexity of this public health threat by integrating the perspectives of multiple disciplines to ultimately find solutions.