Professor Paul Peterson Receives Prize for Best Academic Paper on School Choice and Reform

March 15, 2016

Paul E. Peterson, Henry Lee Shattuck Professor of Government and director of the Program on Education Policy and Governance at Harvard Kennedy School, and Matthew M. Chingos, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute, have been selected as winners of the 2016 Association for Education Finance and Policy (AEFP) Prize for their paper “Experimentally estimated impacts of school vouchers on college enrollment and degree attainment,” named best academic paper on school choice and reform.

In their study, published in the Journal of Public Economics in 2015, Chingos and Peterson found that minority students who received a school voucher to attend private elementary schools in 1997 were, as of 2013, 10 percent more likely to enroll in college and 35 percent more likely than their peers in public school to obtain a bachelor’s degree.

The authors also demonstrated significantly positive voucher impacts on college enrollment for the children of African American mothers.  This study marks the first time academic researchers have been able to present empirical evidence of the long-term efficacy of school vouchers through to college graduation.

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Paul Peterson

Paul E. Peterson, Henry Lee Shattuck Professor of Government and director of the Program on Education Policy and Governance at Harvard Kennedy School

Photo Credit: Martha Stewart


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