Kirabo “Bo” Jackson, the Abraham Harris Professor of Education and Social Policy at Northwestern University’s School of Education and Social Policy (SESP), has been appointed as a member of President Biden’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA). The CEA advises the President on economic policy based on data, research and evidence. Jackson’s term begins at the end of August.
Jackson, a faculty fellow in the Northwestern’s Institute for Policy Research, is one of the world's leading experts in the economics of education and is known for his creative, thorough and highly convincing research on some of the most important education policy topics of the day.
“As a scholar conducting policy-facing research, my goal has always been to influence policy. Therefore, being granted the privilege to serve as an advisor to President Biden is both an incredible honor and a great opportunity,” Jackson said.
Jackson’s pathbreaking work in the economics of education has been published in the field’s top journals. Some of his most-cited work examines the impact of public school funding, in which Jackson and colleagues devised innovative methods to measure how increasing K–12 school finances improves students' economic and social outcomes as adults.
He also has investigated students’ socioemotional skills and the effectiveness of K-12 teachers in improving student outcomes.
“President Biden has selected one of the country’s finest scholars on education funding and policy for this role,” Northwestern President Michael Schill said. “Kirabo Jackson is a brilliant example of the positive impact and influence Northwestern’s faculty have on the world around us. We congratulate him on this appointment and thank him for his service to our nation.”
Jackson, 43, is one of the youngest members to have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Education. In 2020, he received the David N. Kershaw Award from the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management, recognizing his contributions to the field of public policy analysis and management. He also is a faculty research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research.
“As a longtime fan of Kirabo Jackson and his academic work, I could not be prouder that he will lend a critical and thoughtful voice to the challenging dialogues that face our nation,” Northwestern Provost Kathleen Hagerty said. “He is an outstanding ambassador for the quality of work and commitment to societal advancement that is foundational to our School of Education and Social Policy and the Institute for Policy Research.”
Currently, Jackson serves as the editor-in-chief of the American Economic Journal: Economic Policy. He previously was co-editor of the American Economic Journal: Economic Policy and the Journal of Human Resources.
"It is a testament to what we already know: Kirabo Jackson is a rigorous economist, whose work has the power to drive larger research agendas and help create important policy,” said School of Education and Social Policy Dean Bryan McKinley Jones Brayboy. "We celebrate his appointment and know that his work will be impactful."