Associate Professor of Education and Policy
PhD, Stanford University
K-12 Education Policy
An expert on teachers’ unions, California school financing, and school boards
Dr. Katharine O. Strunk is an Associate Professor of Education and Policy at USC Rossier with a courtesy appointment in the Price School of Public Policy. Her areas of expertise include teachers’ unions and education governance, teacher labor markets and accountability policies.
Strunk’s work is grounded in the theories of public and labor economics and policy analysis and utilizes quantitative methodologies taken from the fields of economics and sociology. Her research falls into two overarching categories related to K-12 education policy and reform: teacher labor markets and education governance. Specifically, her work on teacher labor markets focuses on questions concerning the determinants of teacher attrition, the retention and recruitment of high quality teachers, and the impact of teachers’ unions on district- and school-level processes. Strunk’s research on education governance explores the relationship between teachers’ unions and school boards, and the varied impacts of accountability policies and their associated interventions. Dr. Strunk’s work has been published or is forthcoming in the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, American Educational Research Journal, Journal of Educational and Behavioral Statistics, Education Finance and Policy, Journal of Education Finance, Educational Policy, Educational Administration Quarterly, the National Tax Journal and the Peabody Journal of Education.
Strunk received her doctorate from Stanford University with a focus on Administration and Policy Analysis, her Masters in Economics from Stanford University and her Bachelors in Public Policy from Princeton University. Previous to joining the Rossier School of Education, Strunk served as an Assistant Professor of Education Policy at the University of California, Davis. In addition, Strunk is also a faculty affiliate of Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE). She is a recipient of the American Education Research Association Division L Junior Scholar Award, the National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship, the American Education Research Association Dissertation Grant and the American Education Finance Association New Scholar Award. Strunk’s research has been funded by the California Department of Education, the Department of Education, and the Spencer Foundation.