“The Power of the Pygmalion Effect”

I worked together with my colleagues Megan Wilhelm and Robert Hanna on a report for the Center for American Progress called the Power of the Pygmalion Effect, which was released last week, and we found that what an educator believed a student could achieve turned out to be a deeply strong predicator of what that student did actually achieve. Read more…

Why Society Needs To Build Cohesion–And The Awkwardness Of Writing A Book On Trust

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When I told people I was working on a book about our faith in others, they sometimes seemed to think I was an aspiring self-help guru. Strangers would confess to me about the times that they lost-or gained-the faith of others. One woman explained to me over drinks how she met her first husband. As I remember the story, she met the man on an airplane, and after the flight, he drove her to her home. (They later divorced.) At a birthday party, a man told me about the time that he got scammed in New York City and lost … Read More

Educational Equity and Effectiveness


School finance reformers have long been divided into two camps. On one side, there are the advocates who argue for increased fiscal equity. They believe the primary issue concerning school finance is funding fairness and point to an abundance of evidence that shows high-poverty districts with needier students receive far less money than their wealthier counterparts. Read more…

Clarifications, Corrections, etc. for The Leap

Here’s a list of clarifications, corrections, and other post-release explainers for my book on social trust: -I misspelled Caitlin Kelly’s name. It’s is Caitlin Kelly, not Caitlin Kelley. I regret the error. Read more…