Students & Alumni

Meet our engaged students and learn about their educational backgrounds and research interests, and get acquainted with our accomplished alumni and discover their dissertation topics and current employment positions.

PhD Student Profiles

Violet Acumo is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She holds a first-class honors degree in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from Uganda’s Makerere University Kampala. She also holds a Master of Public Policy degree and a specialization in Gender, Justice and Environmental Change from Michigan State University. She is the Associate Executive Director of Leaders of Africa, a pan-African organization committed to educating, facilitating collaboration and community, and conducting research and building capacity related to political, economic, and social policy and leadership in Africa and globally. Previously, Violet served as a Data and Evaluation Specialist at Michigan State University’s Department of Education Policy’s Office of K-12 Outreach. She also served as a member of Michigan State University’s Research Consortium on Gender Based Violence and as a Faculty Fellow with the Liberty Hyde Bailey Scholars Program. Violet has worked as a Gender and Policy Specialist in Uganda under World Bank supported initiatives and under the Mastercard Foundation in the United States and Nigeria. In 2016, Violet was selected into the Mandela Washington Fellowship, the flagship program of the U.S. State Department’s Young African Leaders Initiative in recognition of her business and social entrepreneurial abilities. She studied Design Driven Entrepreneurship and Business Design Engineering at Dartmouth College, and won a grant award from the United States African Development Foundation in Washington D.C for her support of indigenous women plantain farmers in Western Uganda. Violet is passionate about gender-centered, policy-oriented research and is interested in equitable international development, international feminist political economy, intersectionality, gender policy and criminal justice policy.

Vishakha Agarwal is a PhD Candidate in the Public Policy program. Her primary research interests focus on equal opportunities in education, youth and development, social exclusion, and international and comparative education. Her research draws from sociology to study the introduction and reproduction of social inequalities, with focus on caste and gender. Her current research investigates how exclusionary practices by teachers and peers, experienced by way of teacher-student and peer interactions in school, shape Dalit youth’s educational outcomes, their self-perceptions, and their sense of the place they occupy in their school and their community. In her research, Vishakha highlights the need for equality of opportunity in education beyond access to education. Vishakha has a great passion for researching issues in education and is currently pursuing her dissertation in this field. Her analytical approach, rests upon the assertions that youth are actively involved in the construction of their own subjectivities and that their experiences are best understood in sociocultural context. Prior to starting her PhD, Vishakha completed her Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) Degree in Economics from Shiv Nadar University, India.

Ijeoma Anyanwu is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She completed a Master’s in Leadership and Administration at Boston College (2017). Her current research examines the impact of race, gender and class disparities on women’s political participation in the United States. IJ aims to use her research to provide solutions that would increase women’s participation in politics and guide ethical policy making and implementation by government institutions. 

Maria Manuella Pache Athayde is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She holds a Master's of Public Policy from American University (2017) and a BA in International Relations from Mount Holyoke College (2012). While at American University, Maria was awarded the William K. Reilly Fellowship for her contributions to environmental governance, and was inducted into Pi Alpha Alpha, the Public Administration Honor Society, for her scholastic achievements. She previously worked as a permits and policy analyst for the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) in Maryland. Her current research interests include developing models for legislators to implement environmental policies at the local level and studying engagement about climate change adaptation plans among local governments and nonprofit organizations.

Bridget Bearden is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Her primary research interests include retirement policy and investments, sustainability, gender diversity, and financial decision making. Other research interests include higher education financing and affordable housing. Her current projects include "Gender diversity in the mutual fund industry" and "Sustainable investing in U.S. private workplace retirement plans." Bridget completed her en-route MS in Public Policy from UMass Boston in 2018, ten years after obtaining her MBA in finance from Suffolk University. While Bridget has pursued graduate school part-time, she has worked as a full-time research consultant to the retirement and investment industry for more than a decade. Her non-profit and for-profit engagements have included Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association (DCIIA), Ceres, and Strategic Insight. Bridget is passionate about ensuring environmental sustainability and fostering a healthy and civil society for future generations, including her own three children.

Brian Beauregard is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston.  He earned an MBA at UMass Boston (2017).  Brian’s primary research interests focus on mental health disparities within the LGBT community and the role of mental health in organizations.  Brian is also interested in how public policy affects politics. He works as a research assistant for the Center for Social Policy at UMass Boston.  

Patricio Belloy is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. He earned a Master of Arts in Global Studies from Leipzig University in Germany and Wroclaw University in Poland, in addition to a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Austral University of Chile, where he is an Associate Researcher at the Transdisciplinary Center for Environmental Studies. His research focuses on how to close the gap between the renewable energy service needs of underserved communities and the technical skills that can be developed locally through formal and non-formal education. Patricio was a trainee at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Climate Action and worked as a consultant in the carbon emissions market. He has collaborated with planners and policy specialists on development projects in different countries and recently completed a Mel King Community Fellowship at MIT. 

Kattalina Berriochoa is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Her dissertation research examines differences in preferences for redistributive finance comparing rural, urban and suburban individuals. The underlying question is how place shapes public preferences for funding public education, focusing on the political economy of rural and remote communities. Her main research interests include Public Finance, Public Opinion, Education & Social Welfare Policy, Economic Geography, Inequality and Survey & Quantitative Methods. Kattalina earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science (International Relations & Comparative Politics) from the University of Montana, Missoula, and a Master’s Degree in Public Policy & Administration (MPA) with an emphasis in Environmental and Natural Resource Administration from Boise State University. As an instructor, she has taught courses in international and comparative public administration, political economy, and the economics of social welfare. Kattalina also holds an interest in language policy and movements for self-determination. In Boston, she coordinates and instructs Basque language courses.

Tanushree Bhan is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Her research interest pertains to the politics of urban poverty in public policy in India. Her dissertation research pursues this interest by investigating the politics of sanitation policymaking vis-a-vis urban poor communities in Delhi, India. Specifically, her research asks why there is variation in the provision of public sanitation service across communities of the poor. Upon graduation, she plans to join a research organization in her home-city of Delhi where she can explore other pressing and vexing issues of urban poverty and inequalities for evidence-based engagement with public officials to inform policy and policy change.

Dragana Bolcic-Jankovic is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Her research uses survey data on doctor-patient email communications from 2003 to 2014 to look at trends, determinants, and effects of this form of communication on digital disparities and quality in health care. Dragana is also the Director of Survey Operations at the Center for Survey Research at UMass Boston, where she has worked since 2002. She has managed policy-related and health research projects for public agencies and academic institutions.  Her work includes a number of patient and provider surveys, including studies focused on health services research and ethics research in medicine and science. Dragana finished her MA in Applied Sociology and MS in Public Policy at UMass Boston, and has published over 20 scientific papers.

Morgan Clark is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy program. Morgan earned a BA in Politics and International Relations with a focus in public health from Scripps College in Claremont, CA. Her interests include public health, particularly sexual health and social determinants of health, regulatory policies, and behavioral economics. Morgan works as Health Director at the Provincetown Health Department. Her current research focuses on how sexual minority men in Provincetown understand and experience the use of methamphetamine and the process of recovery from methamphetamine use. 

Salina (Shengli) Chu is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She holds a Master of Science in emergency management from Boston University and worked in the City of Nashua New Hampshire prior to graduate school. Salina’s research interests include racial and gender disparities in the U.S. immigrant workforce, technology in public administration, and emergency management. In her current research she examines how Asian immigrants encounter a “bamboo ceiling” in the U.S. high-tech companies, and the effect of legal status on immigrants’ career advancement. 

Denisse Delgado is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Denisse holds an MA in Social Development from the Catholic University of Murcia (2013). Denisse was previously an affiliated researcher with the Havana think tank CIPS (The Research Center on Psychology and Sociology) and has also been a visiting scholar at Harvard University (2013, 2016-2017). Her primary research interests focus on social inequalities, international migration, remittances, and transnational dynamics. Her scholarship also explores the participation of the Cuban diaspora in the process of social, cultural and economic changes transforming Cuban society.

Kelsey Edmond is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Organizational and Community Leadership and a Master’s of Public Administration with a focus in Social Innovation from the University of Delaware. Prior to moving to Boston, she worked in higher ed development at her Alma Matter. Her primary research interest is in comparative e-government systems with a global governance lens. Kelsey hopes to examine ways to increase digital diplomacy by researching how the internet and information communication technologies can help achieve diplomatic objectives.  

Sokha Eng is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She is passionate about understanding the relationship between low skilled migration, education, and human capital development in less developed countries such as Cambodia. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from the University of Cambodia in 2012 and her master’s in development policy from the KDI School of Public Policy and Management in Korea. Her research interest is in human capital development and migration.

Jane Ja Kyung Han is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She holds a Master’s Degree in Global Affairs and Policy from Yonsei University in South Korea and a Bachelor’s in Chemistry from Wesleyan University. Jane previously worked as an education consultant as well as a coordinator for an American based NGO operating in Vietnam. Her prior research focused on the political economy of chemical regulations for sustainable development. Currently, her research interests include environmental policy, sustainable development, climate change, and the roles that non-profit and non-governmental organizations play in policy-formulation and implementation.

Liz James is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She holds a Juris Doctorate from Drake University Law School, as well as a BA in English and a BS in Education from Drake University. Prior to graduate school, Liz worked primarily in mental health and trauma-informed care research and implementation. She was the Assistant Director of Training Initiatives at the Trauma Center at JRI in Brookline, MA, where she worked largely with training mental health professionals in trauma-informed care methodologies. Her primary research interests are in systems-level investigations of governmental and non-governmental organizations to provide scientific basis to back up implementation of full-systems changes, with the ultimate goal of working trauma-informed care studies and methods into all aspects of the foster care system.

Priyanka Kabir is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Her research explores the urban middle class’s perceptions of democratic ideals in hybrid democracies. She is using quantitative data analysis methods on primary data collected through an in-person survey on 600 participants. Her most recent employment has been at the Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy (CWPPP) as the Research and Data Manager. Before joining UMass Boston, she worked as a Policy Associate in the United Nations Development Program in Dhaka, Bangladesh. She holds an MA in Development Studies and a BS in Computer Science. She is interested in inclusive and data-driven research within the areas of hybrid democracies and international development.

Emek Karakılıç is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. He earned his master’s degree in Labor Studies from UMass Amherst and his bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Economics from Istanbul Bilgi University. His research interests focus on political economy, labor studies, and living wage. His current research is examining the minimum wage system in Turkey and analyzing its structural problems, in order to offer an alternative living wage system that could be applied in Turkey.

Katelyn Kelly is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She earned her Bachelors of Arts in Political Science from Stonehill College (2009) and a Master of Science in Ethics and Public Policy from Suffolk University (2010). Katelyn is currently employed by the Massachusetts House of Representatives as Chief of Staff to the House Committee on Post Audit and Oversight which performs state agency and public policy reviews for the Commonwealth. Her research interests include public management and social and political policy.  

Samiya Khalid is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Lahore University of Management Sciences (2017). She is originally from Pakistan and has worked as a Consultant for Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department for the Government of Punjab managing and implementing the rural ambulance service project to improve maternal and child healthcare. Samiya is interested in evaluating social welfare policies and safety net programs for domestic and home-based female workers in developing countries. Her research also focuses on family planning policies in Pakistan.  

Namesh Killemsetty is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Namesh comes from an engineering background having finished his Master of Technology in Infrastructure Management from CEPT University, Ahmedabad, India (2013) and a Bachelors in Civil Engineering from National Institute of Technology, Allahabad, India (2010). Prior to starting his PhD, he worked both in the fields of academia and industry. Namesh’s primary research interests focus on urban poverty, community rights of slum dwellers, and affordable housing policies for Indian cities. His dissertation examines the decision-making strategies of slum dwellers for their housing needs in smaller cities of India. Namesh is working on his dissertation: “Assessment of Housing Mismatch in Slums: Learning from Slum Communities in Small Cities.”

Luke Aubry Kupscznk is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. He is in the final stages of his dissertation, which explores unintended consequences of Florida's school grading policies and issues of segregation in education. More broadly, Luke is interested in education reform insofar as it can address opportunity gaps and civic engagement in the political process including community organizing and citizen activism. He currently teaches high school economics outside of Richmond, Virginia.

Stephanie Lessing is a PhD student in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Stephanie completed her MS in Economics from Tufts University (2016) and earned her BS in Economics and Finance from the University of Hartford (2014). Her primary research interests focus on law enforcement policy and technology. Her current research examines the effects of police body cameras on law enforcement processes, department transparency, and community relations. In future studies, she hopes to assist police departments and policy makers in making policy decisions to increase the effectiveness of body cameras while strengthening complimentary police programs and practices to improve transparency and accountability. 

Perri Leviss is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She has a BA from Tufts University and a Masters of Public Policy from the University of Maryland.   Perri has spent her career in health, education, and social services and served as an Assistant Commissioner of Policy at the NYC Department of Health.  She was the Executive Director of RI Campus Compact, a statewide coalition of colleges committed to civic engagement where she managed AmeriCorps programs.  Perri works with youth organizations throughout New England.  Her dissertation focuses on the relationships between emerging adults, adult allies, institutions, and policymakers.

Ryan McLane is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. His primary research interests focus on veteran benefit policy. His current research examines how federal and state veteran benefits target various veteran populations. Ryan finished his MPA from Norwich University in 2009. He currently serves as the Town Administrator in Hubbardston, MA after serving several years at the Director of Veteran Services in Melrose, MA. Ryan is interested in how all public policies inform applied government at the municipal level.

Sean Mossey is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. He graduated with a BA and MPA from the University of New Hampshire in history and public administration, respectively. He has worked as a research and teaching assistant on projects in the realms of e-governance, m-governance, education policy, and organizational development. From 2015-18 Sean was the UMass student representative to the Northeastern Conference on Public Administration (NECOPA).  Sean currently works as a Human Resources Data Analyst for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts with the Department of Transportation. His research interests include information security policy, quantitative analysis, global comparative policy, and organizational theory. Sean is working on his dissertation: “Crafting the Government Mobile Application: Understanding Citizen Participation in the Development of Government Smart City Services.”

Jeff Moyer is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. His dissertation research focuses on policy innovation and racial equity issues present in cannabis legalization in Massachusetts. As part of this research, he received a seed grant from the Boston Area Research Initiative in Fall 2018 to examine the relationship between racial disparities and cannabis location siting in the city of Boston. Previous to this, Jeff completed a Bachelors in Political Science from the University of New Hampshire, and a Masters in Public Administration from Kutztown University. He has an interest in technology policy, voting and electoral systems, and issues of equity and eliminating disparities.

Marcia D Mundt is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Her research focuses on civil society and local government initiatives employed in post-conflict contexts to promote reconciliation, economic development, and democratic transition. Her dissertation explores the impacts of participatory deliberative democracy on peacebuilding in post-conflict countries in Central America. Her fieldwork has been generously funded by a UMass Boston Dissertation Grant, the United States Institute of Peace Dissertation Scholarship, and the Fulbright-Hays Fellowship. Marcia holds a BA in Government, Communication Studies, and Spanish from New Mexico State University, a MA in Peace Studies from the University of Bradford, and a MSPP from UMass Boston. Committed to the promotion of social justice world-wide, she is a researcher, practitioner, and consultant in international development, post-conflict peacebuilding, and nonprofit management and evaluation.

Olanike Ojelabi is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Olanike holds a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Management from Worcester State University, a Master’s degree in International Social Policy from the University of Bath, U.K., and a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Bowen University, Iwo, Nigeria. Her research work with the Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy, William Monroe Trotter Institute, and the Center for Social Policy contributes to the advancement of social justice and economic security for underserved groups in Massachusetts. Olanike serves on the UMass Boston Student Advisory Board, representing student interests to university administrators including the Chancellor for Student Affairs. Her current research examines issues and policies around immigration, nonprofits, and population health. 

Bianca Ortiz-Wythe is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. Bianca is a graduate research assistant at the Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public Policy. Her primary research interests focus on immigration and deportation policy, gender and migration, mixed-status families, and economic inequality. Her current research examines the spillover effects of local expansion of 287 (g) Secure Communities (ICE) in Massachusetts on Latinx immigrant take-up of social programs like SNAP and SSI. She hopes to use her research on the impact of anti-immigrant rhetoric and legislation to help encourage the implementation of policies and practices that support and promote protection of the noncitizen immigrant population.   

Sushmita Subedi is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She completed her M.S. in Public Policy from the University of Massachusetts Boston (2015) and her M.A. in Regional Economic and Social Development from the University of Massachusetts Lowell (2013). She has a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) with specialization in Finance from Purbanchal University, Nepal. She is currently working as a Researcher at the American Institutes for Research (AIR), where her work includes program evaluation and formative and summative assessments of primary, secondary, and higher education programs in the United States. Sushmita is interested in the analysis and evaluation of national and international education programs and policies and international development. Sushmita is working on her dissertation: “Lost in Translation?: Understanding Education Policy Implementation in Nepal.”

Jason Wright is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. He holds an MPP from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.  Jason has been a research assistant and research coordinator for the federal government and in multiple public universities, where he has worked with diverse populations, from residents of public housing to patients diagnosed with PTSD, using both qualitative and quantitative methods.  Jason’s research interests currently include economic inequality, political economy, descriptive representation of the working-class, and the application of systems thinking to economic and social policy. Jason is working on his dissertation: “Intersectionality, Class, and Representation in State Legislatures.”

Hsin-Ching Wu is a PhD candidate in the Public Policy doctoral program at UMass Boston. She is also a research assistant at the Institute for Asian American Studies there. Her research primarily focuses on cultural policy, including national and sub-national cultural policy, comparative & international perspectives, public funding for the arts and culture, cultural diversity, and cultural democracy. Moreover, she has been engaging and collaborating in projects concerning topics related to racial and ethnic minorities and immigrants. In addition to research, she has taught master-level courses in quantitative and qualitative methods. 

Public Policy PhD Alumni Profiles

Dale Allen, PhD (Year of Graduation 2012)
Dissertation: "The Economic Relationships between Institutions of Higher Education and Municipalities"

Carolyn Arcand, PhD (Year of Graduation 2014)
Dissertation: "Weighing the Benefits and Risks Associated with Proprietary School Attendance for Low-Income Single Mother Students"

Lisa Kalimon Beauregard, PhD (Year of Graduation 2019)
Dissertation: "To Adopt or Not to Adopt: Factors Impacting States' Pursuit and Implementation of ACA's Home and Community-Based Programs"

Talia Berman-Kishony, PhD (Year of Graduation 2012)
Dissertation: "Interpersonal Conflicts in Hospitals: Their Fingerprints, Consequences and Resolution"

Alma Hallulli Biba, PhD (Year of Graduation 2017)                                                                                                          Dissertation: "'Whose Goals Am I Meeting?' Policy and Practice Dilemmas in Adult Basic Education in the Era of Accountability"

Marija Bingulac, PhD (Year of Graduation 2017)
Dissertation: "Understanding Romani Deprivation in Serbia: From Symbolic Inclusion Prescriptions to Meaningful Pathways to Economic Integration"

Heike Boeltzig, PhD  (Year of Graduation 2010)
Dissertation: “Technology Adoption and Transformation of the Vocational Rehabilitation Process: A Case Study of Counselors within State VR Agencies”

Lisa Brabo, PhD (Year of Graduation 2001)
Dissertation: "Wyoming Women's Experiences in Separating from Violent, Intimate Relationships"

Alix Cantave, PhD (Year of Graduation 2007)
Dissertation: "Non-Governmental Organizations and Local Development in Haiti"

Jennifer Cohen, PhD (Year of Graduation 2011)
Dissertation: "Knots of Knowledge: How Community-Based Organizations Make Social Change"

Jean Cummiskey, PhD (Year of Graduation 1998)
Dissertation: "Risk Perception and the Generation of Public Policy: Case Analyses of Smoking and Septic System Regulations in Massachusetts" 

Denise Dodds, PhD (Year of Graduation 2002)
Dissertation: "The Influence of Social Capital on the Development of Sustainable Neighborhood Coalitions: The Case of Boston Against Drugs"

Elaine Donnelly, PhD (Year of Graduation 2017)
Dissertation: "Regional P20 Councils: Addressing the Education Pipeline through Regional Learning and Cross-Sector Collaboration"

Emily Douglas, PhD (Year of Graduation 2002)
Dissertation: "The Influence of Public Policies on Human Behavior: The Effects of a New Hampshire Law Stating a Presumption for Joint Legal Custody on Fathers' Involvement in Divorced Families"

Jennifer Douglas, PhD (Year of Graduation 2013)
Dissertation: "Producing Space: Block-By-Block Change in a Gentrifying Neighborhood"

Rachel Drew, PhD (Year of Graduation 2014)
Dissertation: "Constructing the American Dream: How Beliefs Influence Decisions about Homeownership"

Paulette A. Farmer, PhD (Year of Graduation 2000)
Dissertation: "Medicare Beneficiaries' Decision to Select a Managed Care Alternative or Remain in The Fee-For-Service System"

Danny Garcia, PhD (year of Graduation 2012)
Dissertation: “Corruption, Democracy, Inequality, and Economic Growth: Exploring the Theoretical and Empirical Relationship in South America, 1995-2008”

Monica Garlick, PhD (Year of Graduation 2017)
Dissertation: "The Case of High and Rising Healthcare Costs in Massachusetts"

Shiko (Anne) W. Gathuo, PhD (Year of Graduation 2004)
Dissertation: "A Country in Democratic Transition: Kenyan Churches in Civil Society"

Paula Georges, PhD (Year of Graduation 2003)
Dissertation: "The Influence of Welfare Coalitions on Massachusetts Welfare Policy"

Phillip Granberry, PhD (Year of Graduation 2007)
Dissertation: “Individual, Institutional, and Environmental Determinants of Social Capital and its Influence on the Earnings and Health of Mexican Immigrants in Los Angeles County ”

Amy Helburn, PhD (Year of Graduation 2014)
Dissertation: "A Longitudinal Look at Social Protection: Does Unequal Receipt of Employment-Based Benefits Lead to Health Disparities, thus Limiting Earnings Mobility?"

Amy Heller, PhD (Year of Graduation 2003)
Dissertation: "The Perceived Effect of Managed Care Organizations on Physicians Who Care For Children"

Sarah Hogue, PhD (Year of Graduation 2016)
Dissertation: "Frontline Youth Workers: Meaning-Making and Street-Level Policy"

Brandynn Holgate, PhD (Year of Graduation 2014)
Dissertation: "Economic Development in the Massachusetts Life Sciences Cluster: Shared Prosperity or a Big Tradeoff?"

Merritt Hughes, PhD (Year of Graduation 2018)
Dissertation: "Carbon Pricing in a Complex Adaptive System"

Charles "Skuk" Jones, PhD (Year of Graduation 2008)
Dissertation: "The Renewable Energy Industry in Massachusetts as a Complex System: Developing a Shared Understanding for Policy Making"

Berna Kahraman, PhD (Year of Graduation 2011)
Dissertation: "Youth Employment and Unemployment in Developing Countries: Macro Challenges with Micro Perspectives"

Mandira Kala, PhD (Year of Graduation 2009)
Dissertation: “Decentralization in Kerala: Revealing the Deliberative Sphere, Political Agency and Citizen Well-Being"

Ndumba Kamwanyah, PhD (Year of Graduation 2018)
Dissertation: "Beyond The Tower of Babel: Finding a Better Path to Reconciling and Uniting Namibians: A Case Study of Windhoek Suburbs/Townships"

Robert Kramer, PhD (Year of Graduation 2010)
Dissertation: "Why Massachusetts College Students Drive After Drinking: Do Current Policies to Stop Them Make Sense?"

Nicole Lavan, PhD (Year of Graduation 2009)
Dissertation: “An Analysis of Students who left Boston Public Schools for Alternative Education and GED Programs”

Hyun Jung Lee, PhD (Year of Graduation 2018)
Dissertation: "The Effect of Affordable Care Act Medicaid Expansion on Disparities in Access to Care and Health Status"

Maria Elena Letona, PhD (Year of Graduation 1997)
Dissertation: "State Government Provision of HIV/AIDS Education and Prevention Programs Through Latino Community Agencies: A Policy Implementation Analysis"

Michael Liu, PhD (Year of Graduation 1999)
Dissertation: "Chinatown's Neighborhood Mobilization and Urban Development in Boston"

Xuhong Liu, PhD (Year of Graduation 2008)
Dissertation: "Industry Environmental Performance, Economic Growth and Environmental Regulation: Evidence from China"

Lawrence J. Makovich, PhD (Year of Graduation 1997)
Dissertation: "Fiscal Policy Perversity in State and Local Government Spending" 

Tiffany Manuel, PhD (Year of Graduation 2002)
Dissertation: "Giving Mercenaries a Chance to Be Missionaries: Making the Case for Universal Paid Family Leave in the United States"

Edith Mas, PhD (Year of Graduation 2004)
Dissertation: "Why Act? The Roots and Potential of Precautionary Environmental Action in Three Vermont Watersheds"

Erin E. McGaffigan, PhD (Year of Graduation 2011)
Dissertation: "It's not so Simple: Understanding Participant Involvement in the Design, Implementation, and Improvement of Cash & Counseling Programs"

James McIntyre, PhD (Year of Graduation 2003)
Dissertation: "An Analysis of the State Education Aid Funding Mechanism Established by the Massachusetts Education Reform Act" 

Tatjana Meschede, PhD (Year of Graduation 2004)
Dissertation: "Bridges and Barriers to Housing for 'Chronically' Homeless Street Dwellers: The Effects of Health and Substance Abuse Services on Housing Attainment" 

Karen R. Monaghan, PhD (Year of Graduation 2014)
Dissertation: "Mind the Gap: The Integration of Physical and Mental Healthcare in Federally Qualified Health Centers"

Rebecca Moryl, PhD (Year of Graduation 2010)
Dissertation:  "Alignment of Economic Development Goals and Policy: Considering Economic Development Goals, their Expression and their Execution"

Kevin B. Murphy, PhD (Year of Graduation 2008)
Dissertation: "Factors Affecting the Retention, Persistence and Degree Attainment of Immigrant Students at Public Four-Year Higher Education Institutions”

Gloria Cross Mwase, PhD (Year of Graduation 2005)
Dissertation: "Participation and Community Benefit: A Case Study of the Boston Enhanced Enterprise Community, 1994-1999"

David Gonzalez Nieto, PhD (Year of Graduation 2016)
Dissertation: "The Politics of Official English: Exploring the Intentions and the Outcomes behind English-Only Policies in the United States" 

Michelle Portman, PhD (Year of Graduation 2007)
Dissertation: "From Land to Sea: The Application of Land Protection Tools to the Marine Environment"

Kimberly Puhala, PhD (Year of Graduation 2011)
Dissertation: “Legal Services for Women Survivors of Domestic Violence: Do Public Problems Require Public Solutions?”

O. Steven Quimby, PhD (Year of Graduation 2008)
Dissertation: "Metropolitan Growth and Inequality: The Impact of Regional Governance Structures"

John F. Quinn, PhD (Year of Graduation 2014)
Dissertation: "A Fresh Perspective: Public Choice Theory and the Massachusetts Legislator"

Jennifer Raymond, PhD (Year of Graduation 2009)
Dissertation: "From Our House to the State House: Understanding the Impacts of Goodridge v. Public Health on the Attitudes, Lived Experiences and Political Participation of LGBTQ Individuals in Greater Boston"

E. Lee Rosenthal, PhD (Year of Graduation 2003)
Dissertation: "The Sustainability Dance: Lessons to Learn for an Emerging Force in Community Health: Community Health Workers" 

Laurie Ross, PhD (Year of Graduation 2002)
Dissertation: "Rebuilding Communities, Shaping Identities: The Impact of Participatory Neighborhood Planning Process of Young, Low-Income Adolescents"

Ana Maria Sanchez Rodriguez, PhD (Year of Graduation 2017)
Dissertation: "Civil Society Organization Practices to End Violence Against Women and Girls with Disabilities in Mexico"

Alvine Murielle Tchuathi Sangang, PhD (Year of Graduation 2017)
Dissertation: "Addressing University Graduates' Employability in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Case Study of Cameroon"

Jennifer Shea, PhD (Year of Graduation 2008)
Dissertation: "Inside the Black Box of Devolution: A Model of Devolved Governance through the Community-Integrated Intermediary: The Case of the Compassion Capital Fund and the Field of High-risk Youth Services in Boston"

Mary Spooner, PhD (Year of Graduation 2001)
Dissertation: "Women Under Subjection of the Law: A Study of the Legal Responses to Women's Abuse in the English-Speaking Caribbean"

Doreen Stern, PhD (Year of Graduation 2002)
Dissertation: "A Study Examining Local Implementation of New Hampshire's Educational Improvement and Assessment Program (1994-1997)"

Felicia M. Sullivan, PhD (Year of Graduation 2014)
Dissertation: "Engaging Youth: Linking Design and Implementation Choices of Out-Of-School Time Programs in Boston to the Development of Political Engagement Attitudes in Youth Age 14 to 18"

Shelley Tinkham, PhD (Year of Graduation 2011)
Dissertation: "The Value of Getting Out: The Impact of School Leaders' International Experiences"

Carson Tsao, PhD (Year of Graduation 1999)
Dissertation: "Regional Coincident Economic Indexes: The New England States' 'State of the Economy'"

Michael Tutty, PhD (Year of Graduation 2012)
Dissertation: "Health Reform Challenges: Understanding Low-Income Massachusetts Residents Who Remain Uninsured"

Omobukola Usidame, PhD (Year of Graduation 2018)
Dissertation: "Tobacco Advertisements and Compliance at the Point of Sale: The Case of Massachusetts"

Udaya Wagle, PhD (Year of Graduation 2005)
Dissertation: "A Multi-Dimensional Approach to Poverty: Economic Well-Being, Capability and Social Inclusion in the City of Katmandu"

Mei G. Wang, PhD (Year of Graduation 1998)
Dissertation: "Outcome Measurement in Health Care: Assessing Hospital Quality Using Mortality Outcomes of Patients with Acute Myocardial Infarction in Massachusetts Hospitals"

James K. West, PhD (Year of Graduation 1999)
Dissertation: "Smoking-Attributable Mortality of Consumers of Massachusetts Department of Mental Health Services: 1989 through 1996"

Ryan Whalen, PhD (Year of Graduation 2017)
Dissertation: "Performance Management and Decision-Making in State Agencies: The Case of Massachusetts"

Randall Wilson, PhD (Year of Graduation 2009)
Dissertation: "Finding the Will and the Way: Applying the Framework of Commitment and Capacity to the Implementation of Career Ladders in the Long-term Care Sector"

Jean Winsor, PhD (Year of Graduation 2009)
Dissertation: "Increasing Integrated Employment Outcomes: How are States Using Commitment, Capacity building, and Choice to Impact the Distribution of People in Day and Employment Services?"

Richard Wright, PhD (Year of Graduation 2004)
Dissertation: "Protection or Illusion? A Policy Analysis of Federal and Massachusetts Sex Offender Legislation"

Ghazal Mir Zulfiqar (Year of Graduation 2013)
Dissertation: "Microfinance: A Tool for Financial Access, Poverty Alleviation or Gender Empowerment ? - Empirical Findings from Pakistan"

Public Policy Dissertations Available on Scholarworks

Download public policy dissertations from 2011 to the present.