Cities, Philanthropy, and Politics

Associate Professor, Political Science

Sarah Reckhow


Sarah Reckhow is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science at Michigan State University. Her research and teaching interests include urban politics, education policy, and nonprofits and philanthropy. In 2018-19, she was awarded a fellowship with the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University.

Her newest book, written with Jeffrey Henig and Rebecca Jacobsen, is Outside Money in School Board Elections: The Nationalization of Education Politics. Her first book, Follow the Money: How Foundation Dollars Change Public School Politics, examines the role of major foundations, such as the Gates Foundation, in urban school reform. Reckhow was awarded a research grant from the W.T. Grant Foundation (with Megan Tompkins-Stange) to study the use of research evidence in the development of teacher quality policy debates. She has recently published articles in the Journal of Urban AffairsUrban Affairs Review, Policy Studies Journal, and Planning Theory. Reckhow is affiliated with the Global Urban Studies Program and the Education Policy Center at Michigan State. She received her Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in 2009. Previously, Reckhow taught history and government at Frederick Douglass High School in the Baltimore City Public Schools.