Renowned scholar and researcher Carolyn J. Heinrich has joined the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs faculty as the Sid Richardson Professor in Public Affairs. Heinrich, whose research focuses on social welfare policy, labor force development, public management, performance management and econometric methods for program evaluation, has also assumed leadership of the LBJ School’s Center for Health and Social Policy (CHASP).
“I am delighted that Dr. Heinrich, one of the country’s foremost social policy scholars and researchers, is joining the LBJ School and taking over the directorship for our Center for Health and Social Policy,” said Robert Hutchings, Dean of the LBJ School at The University of Texas at Austin. “A dynamic and innovative scholar and teacher, she will enhance an already rapidly expanding research agenda within the Center for Health and Social Policy, applying modern research and quantitative analysis methods to social programs ranging from education to public health.”
Heinrich, who was previously director of the La Follette School of Public Affairs at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, will join a team of LBJ School faculty at CHASP who have worked to develop the center’s social policy research agenda, events and programming since the center’s inception in 2002. She has also been appointed as an affiliated professor in the Department of Economics in the College of Liberal Arts.
“This is a very exciting time to be a part of the LBJ School community and especially the CHASP team, in what is clearly a forward-thinking academic environment that vigorously supports policy-focused research collaborations,” said Heinrich. “Being close to state government in a state like Texas, which is large, diverse, and both a driver and a model for policy innovation and diffusion to other states, provides tremendous advantages when it comes to creating policy and evaluating its impacts.”
Since its creation, the center has been governed by an executive committee, which included David Warner, Wilber J. Cohen Professor in Health and Social Policy and acting director of the center since 2008. Under the direction of Warner and the executive committee, the center executed a robust research agenda and mounted programming and events such as the Health Privacy Summit that took place in Washington, D.C. in June of 2011. The center has expanded in recent months with the creation of the Project on Educator Effectiveness and Quality (PEEQ), which is under the direction of LBJ School Associate Professor Cynthia Osborne, a member of the CHASP executive committee.
Heinrich is also bringing with her a portfolio of national and international research projects on educational interventions, workforce development and active labor market policies for low-skilled and disadvantaged workers, health care reform and substance abuse treatment policies, child support, and conditional cash transfers and related poverty-reduction interventions.
“It is my goal for CHASP to be recognized as one of the leading centers of research on health and social policy, both nationally and internationally, that not only informs current programs and practices, but also transforms future policymaking, making a positive impact on individual and family lives and the broader society through the work that we do,” said Heinrich.
Heinrich is the President of the Public Management Research Association, and through April 2011, she served on the Executive Committee of the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management. Heinrich was also editor of the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory from 2005-2008. In 2004, she received the David N. Kershaw Award for distinguished contributions to the field of public policy analysis and management by a person under age 40, and in 2010, she was elected to the National Academy of Public Administration. She has published more than 50 peer-reviewed books and journal articles.