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Kara Finnigan

University of Rochester

Kara Finnigan, associate professor of educational policy at the University of Rochester's (UR) Warner School of Education, has conducted research and evaluations of educational policies and programs at the local, state, and federal level for more than 20 years at UR and prominent research organizations, including the Wisconsin Center for Education Research and SRI International.  Her work primarily focuses on K-12 schools in urban contexts with a focus on how policies impact students of color and from low socioeconomic backgrounds. She has written extensively about low-performing schools and accountability, district reform, principal leadership, and school choice. Finnigan's research blends perspectives in sociology and political science; employs qualitative and quantitative methods, including social network analysis and GIS mapping; and examines the impact of federal and state policies at the local level. Her research has been funded by the WT Grant Foundation, Spencer Foundation, and Ford Foundation and has been published in both academic and practitioner journals. Her recent book Using Research Evidence in Education: From the Schoolhouse Door to Capitol Hill was published by Springer and Thinking and Acting Systemically: Improving School Districts Under Pressure will be published by the American Educational Research Association in early 2016. She holds a Ph.D. in Education Policy (University of Wisconsin-Madison), M.A. in Administration and Policy Analysis (Stanford University), and B.A. in English (Dartmouth College).

Email Kara Finnigan at:
Twitter: @ksfinnigan