Kirabo Jackson

Kirabo Jackson

Associate Professor, Human Development and Social Policy
Faculty Fellow, Institute for Policy Research
A labor economist, Kirabo Jackson studies education and social policy issues. His recent work analyzes the role of peer learning in teacher effectiveness and how student demographics directly affect the distribution of teacher quality across schools. He is also involved in a number of projects to understand when and why certain policies that reward teachers—or students—for student achievement improve student outcomes. Another research area involves the role of worker-firm “match quality” and its effects on worker productivity, including evidence that how well a teacher fits with a certain school can be as important as teacher quality for some outcomes. Jackson is also involved in ongoing projects studying the effects of attending single-sex schools in Trinidad and Tobago.

Jackson’s scholarly articles have appeared in the Journal of Labor Economics and Journal of Human Resources among others, and his research has been featured in a number of mainstream media outlets, including The New York Times, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, and Education Week. Both the Spencer and the Smith Richardson foundations have supported his projects. A faculty research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research, Jackson comes to Northwestern after being an assistant professor at Cornell University.


Year Degree Institution
2007 PhD, Economics Harvard University
2005 AM, Economics Harvard University
2002 BA, Ethics, Politics and Economics Yale University

Selected Publications
Jackson, C. Kirabo (In Press/Under Review). Match quality, worker productivity, and worker mobility: Direct evidence from teachers. The Review of Economics and Statistics, doi:10.1162/REST_a_00339.

Jackson, C. K. (2012). School competition and teacher labor markets: Evidence from charter school entry in North Carolina. Journal of Public Economics 96(5-6): 431-438.

Jackson, C. K., and Emily G. Owens (2011). One for the road: Public transportation, alcohol consumption, and intoxicated driving. Journal of Public Economics 95(1-2): 106-121.

Jackson, C. K., and Henry Schneider (2011). Do social connections reduce moral hazard? Evidence from the New York City taxi industy. American Economic Journal: Applied Economics 3(3): 244-267.

Jackson, C. K (2011). Single-sex schools, student achievement, and course selection: Evidence from rule-based student assignments in Trinidad and Tobago. Journal of Public Economics 96(1-2): 173-87.

Jackson, Kirabo (2010). A Little Now for a Lot Later: An Evaluation of a Texas Advanced Placement Incentive Program. Journal of Human Resources 45(3): 591-639.

C. Kirabo Jackson (2010). Do students benefit from attending better schools? Evidence from rule-based student assignments in Trinidad and Tobago . The Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society 120(549): 1399-1429.

Jackson, Kirabo with Elias Bruegmann (2009). Teaching Students and Teaching Each Other: The Importance of Peer Learning for Teachers. American Economic Journal: Applied Economics: 85108.

Jackson, Kirabo (2009). Student Demographics, Teacher Sorting, and Teacher Quality: Evidence from the End of School Desegregation. Journal of Labor Economics: 213-256.

Jackson, Kirabo (2008). Cash for Test Scores: The Impact of the Texas Advanced Placement Incentive Program. Education Next: 70-77.

Research Interests
Economics of education, labor economics, public finance, applied econometrics, development.


HDSP 430 Economics of Social Policy This course introduces students to the fundamentals of economic analysis in the evaluation of education and social policy. Each week the class concentrates on a different important public policy question, and then uses economic reasoning to explain the economic rationales for policies as well as the potential consequences, expected and unexpected, of the policy. The policy questions considered depend on what issues are currently being publicly debated. Economic concepts covered include constrained choice, market forces and price theory, market failures (such as externalities/spillovers and public goods), and welfare analysis.
SESP 210 Intro to Statistics & Research Methodology Definitions and classifications of terms used in quantitative methods; measures of typical and maximum performance, reliability, and validity checks; reporting and displaying data; interpreting results.

Last Updated: 2014-08-27 15:37:10