Burt S. Barnow, Ph.D. is the Amsterdam Professor of Public Service at the Trachtenberg School of Public policy and Public Administration at George Washington University. Dr. Barnow has over 30 years of experience as an economist and manager of research projects in the fields of workforce investment, program evaluation, performance analysis, labor economics, welfare, poverty, child support, and fatherhood. Prior to coming to George Washington University, Dr. Barnow was Associate Director for Research at Johns Hopkins University’s Institute for Policy Studies, where he worked for 18 years. Prior to that, he worked for 8 years at the Lewin Group and nearly 9 years at the U.S. Department of Labor, including 4 years as Director of the Office of Research and Evaluation in the Employment and Training Administration. Prior to those positions, Dr. Barnow was an assistant professor of economics at the University of Pittsburgh. He has a B.S. degree in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in economics from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.
Dr. Barnow has extensive experience conducting research on implementation of large government programs, and he has specific experience with the unemployment insurance program. Dr. Barnow is currently co-project director for a study for the Employment and Training Administration to analyze states’ experiences implementing workforce investment and unemployment insurance provisions of the Recovery Act. Dr. Barnow also co-directed studies for ETA on the implementation of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) and the 1992 amendments to the Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA). Projects for the Employment and Training Administration involving unemployment insurance include a study analyzing ways to measure solvency of state unemployment insurance trust funds, a study of how state nonmonetary policies affect participation and receipt of unemployment insurance benefits, and a study on how various programs, including unemployment insurance, can be used in times of recession.
His current and recent research includes an evaluation of the Center for Working Families programs for the Annie E. Casey Foundation, a project to develop and evaluate demonstrations that test innovative strategies to promote self-sufficiency for low-income families for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, a study for the Employment and Training Administration to evaluate the impact of selected projects in the High Growth Job Training Initiative using nonexperimental methods, an assessment of occupational skill shortages for the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, an evaluation of the priority of services for veterans mandate for Department of Labor programs for the U.S. Department of Labor, a project to develop cost performance standards for the U.S. Department of Labor, an evaluation of the determinants of the welfare caseload in Colorado for the State of Colorado, and an evaluation of a Department of Labor demonstration project to help youth in foster care make the transition into the labor market for Casey Family Programs.
Dr. Barnow has published widely in the fields of labor economics and evaluation. He was a co-author with Christopher King of a major implementation study funded by the Department of Labor of the Workforce Investment Act. He co-edited two books in 2000: Improving the Odds: Publicly Funded Training in a Changing Labor Market, co-edited with Christopher T. King, and Evaluating Comprehensive State Welfare Reform: The Wisconsin Works Program, co-edited with Thomas Kaplan and Robert Moffitt. Dr. Barnow served as Vice Chairman of the National Academy of Sciences Committee on the Information Technology Work Force, and was a member of the NAS Board on Higher Education and Workforce for six years. He is currently serving on the NAS Committee on the External Evaluation of the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research, and he has served on five other NAS committees. He currently serves on the Baltimore Workforce Investment Board’s System Effectiveness Committee, and he chaired the Maryland Governor’s Workforce Investment Board’s Performance Committee for four years. Dr. Barnow chairs the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs Research Committee, and he serves on the editorial boards of two journals.