Welcome to the homepage for the Education Politics and Policy subgroup, a new subgroup (est. 2018) of the American Political Science Association). On this site, you will find information regarding teaching resources, research resources, collaboration opportunities, and many more ways to engage with this exciting field.

Political scientists are increasingly studying the politics of education. This subgroup’s purpose is to create a space for scholars interested in the politics of education to collaborate and continue the development of this emerging field.

Because every country across the world must educate its population, education politics are ubiquitous and do not fall neatly within regional APSA sections. Indeed, virtually every country grapples with questions related to improving the quality of instruction, expanding access to educational opportunities, addressing inequality in educational outcomes, and updating education for changing economies. Addressing these policy challenges involves a complex interplay among an array of groups with a stake in education, like teachers’ unions, business groups, religious organizations, non-profit organizations, and parents.  At the same time, the influence of international organizations and the spread of international standardized testing gives the politics of education an international relations dimension. Moreover, the politics of education spans methodologies and approaches, as it encompasses survey experiments that seek to understand how information about school performance shapes political behavior, large datasets collected by ministries of education, network analysis of the flow of information and influence, and qualitative analysis of policy processes over time. Lastly, the politics of education addresses many types of political science questions, such as those pertaining to political parties and interest organizations, intergovernmental relations, the provision of government services, individuals’ political behavior, the development of human capital, the causes and consequences of societal inequality, and social movements and mobilization.

Yet, much will be learned by fostering greater communication and collaboration among those with an interest in the politics of education. In this subgroup, we seek to foster that communication.

This group is separate from the Politics of Education Association, which is a special interest group under the American Educational Research Association. Many members are affiliated with both organizations.


The main coordinator of the Education Politics and Policy subgroup is Leslie Finger (Harvard University).


Note: Header image of Chicago teacher strike obtained from Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons license, author Brad Perkins. Source image is available here.