John Engberg

Photo of John Engberg
Senior Economist
Pittsburgh Office

Education

Ph.D., M.S. in economics, University of Wisconsin–Madison; B.A. in economics, Harvard University

Media Resources

This researcher is available for interviews.

To arrange an interview, contact the RAND Office of Media Relations at (310) 451-6913, or email media@rand.org.

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Overview

John Engberg (he/him) is a senior economist at the RAND Corporation. He specializes in applied statistical methods and microeconomics. Engberg's research spans the areas of education, crime, health, labor markets, and economic development, with a focus on the evaluation of policies and programs in these areas and their effect on racial disparities. His current work includes an event history study of school discipline and criminal justice involvement, with the goal of explicitly modeling the school-to-prison pipeline. He is also working on a study of the sources of racial disparities in the criminal justice systems of two large U.S. counties, as well as the impact of public defense reform. His current and recent education projects include an examination of the Wallace Foundation's Partnerships for Social and Emotional Learning Initiative, an evaluation of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation's Intensive Partnership Sites and an evaluation of restorative practices in Pittsburgh Public Schools. Prior to joining RAND, Engberg was an associate professor of economics at the Heinz School of Public Policy and Management at Carnegie Mellon University. Engberg received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. 

Previous Positions

Associate Professor of Economics, Heinz School of Public Policy and Management, Carnegie Mellon University; Research Director, Carnegie Mellon Census Research Data Center

Recent Projects

  • Evaluation of the New York City Community School Initiative
  • Evaluation of Restorative Practices in Pittsburgh Public Schools
  • Racial Disparities in the Allegheny County Criminal Justice System
  • The Impact of a Public Defender at First Appearance
  • Creating Career Ladders for Unemployed and Underemployed Workers in New Orleans

Selected Publications

Baird MD, Engberg J, Opper IM, "Optimal Allocation of Seats in the Presence of Peer Effects: Evidence from a Job Training Program," Journal of Labor Economics (forthcoming)

Johnston, William R., John Engberg, Isaac M. Opper, Lisa Sontag-Padilla, and Lea Xenakis, Illustrating the Promise of Community Schools: An Assessment of the Impact of the New York City Community Schools Initiative, RAND Corporation (RR-3245), 2020

Augustine, Catherine H., John Engberg, Geoffrey E. Grimm, Emma Lee, Elaine Lin Wang, Karen Christianson, and Andrea A. Joseph, Can Restorative Practices Improve School Climate and Curb Suspensions? An Evaluation of the Impact of Restorative Practices in a Mid-Sized Urban School District, RAND Corporation (RR-2840), 2018

Hong K, Zimmer R, Engberg J., "How Does Grade Configuration Impact Student Achievement in Elementary and Middle School Grades?" Journal of Urban Economics, 105, 2018

Ray KN, Chari AV, Engberg J, Bertolet M, Mehrotra A. , "Disparities in Time Spent Seeking Medical Care in the United States," JAMA Internal Medicine , 175(12), 2015

Engberg J, Epple D, Imbrogno J, Sieg H, Zimmer R, "Evaluating Education Programs That Have Lotteried Admission and Selective Attrition," Journal of Labor Economics, 32(1), 2013

Engberg J, Gill B, Zamarro G, Zimmer R, "Closing Schools in a Shrinking District: Do Student Outcomes Depend on Which Schools are Closed?" Journal of Urban Economics, (1), 2012

Engberg J, Morral A, "Reducing Substance Use Improves Adolescents’ School Attendance," Addiction, (101), 2006

Recent Media Appearances

Interviews: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Commentary: Education Week

Commentary

Publications