Dr. Michael Feuer

Dr. Michael Feuer headshot

Dr. Michael Feuer

Dean, Graduate School of Education and Human Development; Professor, Education Policy

School: Graduate School of Education and Human Development

Department: Educational Leadership, Cross-Disciplinary


Office Phone: (202) 994-6161

Michael Feuer is Dean of the Graduate School of Education and Human Development and Professor of Education Policy at the George Washington University, past president of the National Academy of Education, and nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. He came to GW in 2010 after a 17-year tenure in leadership roles at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Previously Feuer was senior analyst and project director at the US Congress Office of Technology Assessment. He was appointed by President Obama in 2014 to the National Board for Education Sciences, and is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and of the American Educational Research Association.

Feuer’s research has focused on the economics of education, international comparative assessments, teacher preparation, inequality and academic opportunity, science policy, use of research to inform policy, philanthropy, and civics education. In addition to many edited volumes and journal articles, Feuer is the author of Moderating the Debate: Rationality and the Promise of American Education (2006), The Rising Price of Objectivity: Philanthropy, Government, and the Future of Education Research (2016), both published by Harvard Education Press. His third book, Can Schools Save Democracy? Civic Education and the Common Good, was published by Johns Hopkins University Press in November 2023.

Feuer’s essays, commentaries, book reviews, and poems have appeared in newspapers, blogs, and magazines in the US and abroad. Recent essays have addressed the role of social science in pandemic models, risk assessment, and the condition of education in the West Bank and Gaza. He consults to governments and research organizations in Europe, Israel, and elsewhere. He is also the host of the education podcast, EdFix.

Feuer received his BA in English from Queens College (CUNY), the MA in public management from the Wharton School, and the PhD in public policy from the University of Pennsylvania. He has been on the faculty of Drexel University and Georgetown. He lives in Washington, DC with his wife Regine, a physician certified in both ob-gyn and addiction medicine. The Feuers have two grown children.

   Read the Dean's Blog: Feuer Consideration >

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Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania

M.A., Wharton School

B.A., Queens College New York


Feuer, M. J. (2023). Can Schools Save Democracy?: Civic Education and the Common Good. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. doi.org/10.56021/9781421447773

Feuer, M. J. (2016). The rising price of objectivity: Philanthropy, government, and the future of education research. Harvard Education Press. 

Jennings, J. F., & Feuer, M. J. (2015). Introduction 1. In Presidents, Congress, and the public schools: The Politics of Education Reform. foreword, Harvard Education Press.

Feuer, M. J. (2006). Moderating the debate: Rationality and the promise of American Education. Harvard Education Press.

Below is a condensed list of publications. Download CV for comprehensive list >

Edited Volumes

Berman, A. I., Feuer, M. J., & Pellegrino, J. W. (2019). What Use Is Educational Assessment? The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 683(1), 8-20. https://doi.org/10.1177/0002716219843871 

Feuer, M.J., Berman, A. I., Atkinson, R.C. (2015). Past as Prologue: The National Academy of Education at 50. Washington, DC: National Academy of Education. https://naeducation.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/NAEd-50th-anniversary-bookmarks-11-18-15.pdf

Feuer, M. J., Floden, R., Chudowsky, N., & Ahn, J. (2013). Evaluation of teacher preparation programs: Purposes, methods, and policy options. Washington, DC: National Academy of Education.

Refereed Articles and Chapters

Feuer, M. J. (2021). Science, Civics, and democracy. Science, 371 (6528), 442. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abg7402

Feuer, M. J. (2020). Policy Models in Behavioral and Social Sciences. Items: Insights from the Social Sciences. https://items.ssrc.org/covid-19-and-the-social-sciences/policy-models-in-pandemic/policy-models-in-behavioral-and-social-sciences/ 

Engel, L., & Feuer, M. J. (2014). On the merits of, and myths about international assessments. Quality Assurance in Education, 22(4).

Feuer, M. J. (2014). Pure and applied science and Pasteur’s quadrant. In D. Philips, et al, (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Educational Theory. Sage.

Feuer, M. J. (2013). Validity of international large-scale assessments: Truth and consequences. In M. Chatterji (Ed.), Validity and test use: An international dialogue on educational assessment, accountability and equity. London: Emerald.

Feuer, M. J. (2011). Politics, economics, and testing: Some reflections. Midwestern Educational Researcher, 24(1).

Feuer, M. J. (2010). Externalities of testing: Lessons from the blizzard of 2010. Measurement: Interdisciplinary Research and Perspectives, 8, 59–69.

Feuer, M. J., & Maranto, C. (2010). Science advice as procedural rationality: Reflections on the National Research Council. Minerva, 48, 259–275.

Feuer, M. J. (2009). Rationality and idealism: A moderate response to Bredo, Kerdeman, and Robertson. Educational Theory, 59(5).

Commentaries, Book Reviews, Essays, Poems, Blogs

Feuer, M. J. (2023, November 21). There's a major conflict at the heart of our democracy. Civics education should embrace it (opinion). Education Week. https://www.edweek.org/teaching-learning/opinion-theres-a-major-conflict-at-the-heart-of-our-democracy-civics-education-should-embrace-it/2023/11

Feuer, M. J. (2021, August 25). Simple Rhetoric, Complicated Realities (opinion). Inside Higher Ed | Higher Education News, Events and Jobs. https://www.insidehighered.com/views/2021/08/26/higher-ed-west-bank-and-gaza-more-vibrant-might-be-assumed-opinion

Feuer, M. J. (2021, June 4). The Johnson and Johnson vaccine pause and the challenge of risk assessment. The Brookings Institution. https://www.brookings.edu/articles/the-johnson-and-johnson-vaccine-pause-and-the-challenge-of-risk-assessment/

Feuer, M. J., & Muir, R., et al. (2021). Forecast | THE FUTURE OF ... education. GW Magazine. https://magazine.gwu.edu/forecast

Feuer, M. J. (2021, March 10). Book review: The American Jewish Philanthropic Complex. Jewish Journal. https://jewishjournal.com/commentary/334061/book-review-the-american-jewish-philanthropic-complex/

Feuer, M. J. (2020, November 13). From LH to BH: Think positive. EdSource. https://edsource.org/2020/from-lh-to-bh-think-positive/643637

Feuer, M. J. (2020, August 11). Sure, envision a new public school system. but don’t ignore the emergency at hand (opinion). Education Week. https://www.edweek.org/leadership/opinion-sure-envision-a-new-public-school-system-but-dont-ignore-the-emergency-at-hand/2020/08

Feuer, M. J. (2020, June 1). In Defense of Economists: A Response to “The Dismal Kingdom.” Foreign Affairs. https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/world/2020-06-01/defense-economists

Feuer, M. J. (2020, May 7). The Dismal Science is Not so Dismal. Teachers College Record. https://journals.sagepub.com/pb-assets/cmscontent/TCZ/Commentaries%20Collection/2020%20Commentaries/The%20Dismal%20Science%20is%20Not%20so%20Dismal%20-1656108978.pdf

Feuer, M. J. (2019, August 2). Here we are. eJewish Philanthropy. https://ejewishphilanthropy.com/here-we-are/

Feuer, M. J., & Malkus, M. (2018, June 13). Why Applied Research is Integral to Advancing Jewish ECE. eJewish Philanthropy. https://ejewishphilanthropy.com/why-applied-research-is-integral-to-advancing-jewish-ece 

Feuer, M. J. (2018, April 27). Evidence for opportunity (editorial). Science, 360 (6387), 359–359. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aat8999 

Feuer, M. J. (2017, December 18). A Note of Thanks from a Washingtonian. Helena independent Record. https://helenair.com/opinion/columnists/a-note-of-thanks-from-a-washingtonian/article_49cc818b-3c5b-5262-90a9-1814f1aaf359.html 

Feuer, M. J. (2017, September 7). What is it about The New Yorker? The Times of Israel. https://blogs.timesofisrael.com/what-is-it-about-the-new-yorker/

Feuer, M. J. (2017, July 24). Private Charity, Government Spending, and Education Accountability. Voices in Education: The Blog of Harvard Education Publishing. Read at https://gsehd.gwu.edu/blogs/feuer-consideration/voices-in-education-post

Feuer, M. J. (2017, February 13). Betsy Devos had a rough start. But 6 steps can make her tenure bearable (opinion). The Hill. https://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/the-administration/319263-betsy-devos-had-a-rough-start-but-6-steps-can-make-her/ 

Feuer, M. J. (2016, November 1). Don’t Let Partisanship Overshadow Fact-Finding (opinion). Education Week. https://www.edweek.org/leadership/opinion-dont-let-partisanship-overshadow-fact-finding/2016/11 

Feuer, M. J. (2016, October 23). The Politics of Charity (op ed). HuffPost. https://www.huffpost.com/entry/the-politics-of-charity_b_580bfe2be4b099c434319765 

Feuer, M. J. (2016, July 19). Accountability for Science and the Science of Accountability. Items: Insights from the Social Sciences. https://items.ssrc.org/can-social-science-matter/accountability-for-science-and-the-science-of-accountability/

Selected Invited Talks

Download CV for comprehensive list >

  • "Private Rights and Social Wrongs: Notes for a Revived Civics Curriculum,"  23rd Annual Boisi Lecture, Boston College's Lynch School of Education and Human Development, October 2021
  • “Civics, Education, and Democracy,"  International conference presentation, "The Encounter between Research, Policy, and Practice” sponsored by YOZMA-The Center for Knowledge and Research in Education (Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities), January 2021
  • "Inequality and Digital Learning in the COVID Era: A Research and Practice Seminar," private invited seminar with discussants, hosted by the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences and co-organized by GSEHD,  July 2020
  • “Education Policy in an Era of Distrust: Prospects for Progress,” Presidential address (invited), 43rd annual conference of the Southwest Educational Research Association, February 2020
  • “The Rising Price of Objectivity: Implications for Independent Think Tanks,” private invited seminar, Brookings Institution, Washington, DC, December 2019

  • "Here We Are," Keynote address, Avodah DC Service Corps 2018-2019 siyyum (completion) celebration, Washington, DC, July 2019

  • “What Use is Educational Assessment?” policy colloquium/presentation, Initiative for Applied Education Research, Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities, Jerusalem, May 2019

  • "Competition and Evidence: How to Stay Credible," Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University, April 2019

  • "What Use Is Educational Assessment? Taking Stock and Looking Ahead," with Amy Berman, AERA, April 2019

  • “Public Policy as Delayed Gratification,” Invited Lecture, Gardner Seminars, University of California, Berkeley, January 2019

  • “Philanthropy, Science, and Education: The Gift that Keeps on Taking?” Invited Lecture, Center for Studies in Higher Education, University of California, Berkeley, January 2019

  • “Perspectives on Education: US and Global,” Invited Lecture, University of Sofia, Tokyo, December 2018

  • "The Ever-Evolving Role of Educational Assessments," Plenary Session III with co-panelists Laura Engel, Guadalupe Valdés, and Martin West, National Academy of Education annual meeting, November 2018

  • “Education Funding: US and international comparisons,” Committee for Education Funding, Washington, September 2018

  • "E Pluribus Unum," Keynote address, International Education Week hosted by ADA, University in Baku, Azerbaijan, June 2017

  • "150 Years of Working for Educational Justice: The U.S. Experience," Keynote address, Fulbright Enrichment Seminar entitled "Overcoming Barriers to Quality Education in the 21st Century," George Washington University, April 2017

  • "Beyond the Elections: Politics, Policy, and Education," Capstone Keynote with James Fallows, National Correspondent for The Atlantic, "What's Ahead for Pre-K - 12: Beyond the 2016 Election" sponsored by GW's Graduate School of Education and Human Development and Education Week, December 2016

  • “From Science to Policy: The US Evidence Movement and Lessons for Inequality Research,” Invited Keynote lecture, International Academic Conference on Economic and Social Development, National Research University, Higher School for Economics, Moscow, April 2016

  • "Do randomized control trials (RCT) in education meet the 'gold standard,'" Expert panel, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research (AEI), March 2016

  • “No Country Left Behind: Notes on the Rhetoric and Reality of International Educational Comparisons,” Invited William H. Angoff Memorial Lecture, Princeton: ETS, August 2012


  • March 2024 - Dean Michael Feuer, Dr. Ben Jacobs, and Dr. Arielle Levites were quoted in Washington Jewish Week's article, "George Washington University Launches New Center for Jewish Education."
  • January 2024 - For Medium, Michael Feuer, dean of the Graduate School o f Education  and Human Development, authored the article “On the State of the Jewish Democratic State.’’
  • January 2024 Dean Michael Feuer gave a lecture on “Challenges of Assessment” to a group of about 60 educators and students at the Azerbaijan State Pedagogical University in Baku.
  • November 2023 - For Education Week, Michael J. Feuer, dean of the Graduate School of Education and Human Development, authored the article “There’s a Major Conflict at the Heart of Our Democracy. Civics Education Should Embrace It."
  • September 2023 Dean Michael Feuer was quoted in the GW Today article, "Reflections on Jewish High Holidays."
  • July 2023 - Dean Michael Feuer gave a talk on Civic Education and Collective Responsibility to a group of 75 educators and education leaders in Azerbaijan.
  • May 2023 - Dean Michael Feuer gave the welcome remarks at the Improving Instruction, Assessment, and Policies for Secondary English Learners Across the Content Areas 2023 Conference.
  • March 2023 - Dean Michael Feuer has been named a member of the inaugural national K-12 Research Advisory Council (RAC) at The Education Trust. The work of the RAC will inform Ed Trust’s research and policy agendas designed to address complex and pressing issues in education and ensure that funding is spent effectively and equitably.
  • January 2023 - Dean Michael Feuer was named on the 2023 RHSU Edu-Scholar Public Influence Rankings. This annual exercise spotlights the top 200 education scholars who move ideas from academic journals into the national conversation.
  • October 2022 - Dean Michael Feuer was interviewed for a WRC-NBC4 news segment about the decline of reading and math scores from NAEP during the pandemic.
  • September 2022 - Dean Michael Feuer was a guest on the Hatchet's Podcast, "Getting to the Bottom of It." The episode is titled, "Biden's student loan forgiveness plan explained."
  • April 2022 - Dean Michael Feuer's response to the question, "What is the One Thing Students Should Leave College Knowing?" was published in Moment magazine's Education Issue.
  • March 2022 - Dean Michael Feuer was interviewed for a Fox 23 news segment: "Majority of Americans believe public schools on the wrong track."
  • January 2022 - Dean Michael Feuer was interviewed on Fox 5 News about changes to the SAT exam: "Analysis: SAT exams moving online"
  • January 2022 - Dean Michael Feuer was ranked in the 2022 RHSU Edu-Scholar Public Influence Rankings.
  • February 2021 - The National Academy of Education has put out a summary report, "Educational Assessments in the COVID-19 Era and Beyond." Dean Michael Feuer was on the planning committee and moderated a roundtable in December at the National Academy of Education on which the summary report was based. Dean Feuer was also a steering committee member.
  • December 2020 - Dean Michael Feuer was quoted in the Science Magazine article, "Researchers decry Trump picks for education sciences advisory board."
  • November 2020 - Dean Michael Feuer was quoted in GW Today article, "What will Higher Education Look Like Under a Biden Administration?"
  • October 2020 - Dean Michael Feuer joined Dr. Carl Cohn, on his podcast, "Conversations with Carl." They discussed the upcoming presidential election and what it might mean for education. Dean Feuer weighed in on the changes a new administration might bring.
  • October 2020 - Dean Michael Feuer was a panelist as part of the Global Leaders Program event, "Data Analysis and Storytelling: Signal Through the Noise - Storytelling As Brand." Emiliana Vegas, Co-Director of The Brookings Institute’s Center for Universal Education, and Dean Feuer held a conversation on the role of data in evaluating and improving educational processes.
  • January 2020 - Dean Michael Feuer was listed on the 2020 Edu-Scholar Public Influence Rankings, which spotlights 200 scholars who move ideas from academic journals into the national conversation. American Enterprise Institute director of education policy studies and Education Week blogger Frederick M. Hess uses nine metrics to calculate how much university-based academics contributed to public discussions of education.
  • September 2019 - Dean Michael Feuer, Drs. James Williams, Lionel Howard and Natalie Milman and CEP Executive Director Maria Ferguson participated in a workshop titled, "Evidence for policy and the pursuit of educational opportunity: The Case of National Assessment and International Comparisons" with the French Ministry of Education (FME). GSEHD and FME are developing a new partnership, aimed at addressing/identifying the links between the research community and the administrative/policy authority that oversees education.
  • January 2019 - Dean Michael Feuer was listed on the 2019 Edu-Scholar Public Influence Rankings, which spotlights 200 scholars who move ideas from academic journals into the national conversation.
  • November 2018 - Education Week and GW's Graduate School of Education and Human Development joined forces in the event "2020 Vision: Education Policy and Politics Beyond the Midterms" for a look at the 2018 midterm elections and what education issues and controversies are likely to resonate in the fast-approaching 2020 election year. Dean Feuer participated in a panel called, "Educational Equity, Equality, and Opportunity Today."
  • October 2018 - Dean Michael Feuer joined Dr. Adam Gamoran, President of the William T. Grant Foundation, to discuss the opportunities for universities to support research for social impact in Conversations that Matter.
  • July 2018 - Dean Michael Feuer was quoted in the Washington City Paper's article "Who Gets Access to Data About D.C.’s Public Schools?" The article quotes Dean Feuer from his testimony at the D.C. Council's Joint Public Hearing on Bill 22-776 on July 13.
  • July 2018 - Dean Michael Feuer participated in a roundtable discussion on July 12, 2018 hosted by the Office of the District of Columbia Auditor (ODCA) titled "The District's Public Schools: Data, Reform & the Future." ODCA invited experts on education research and governance to discuss issues such as mayoral control, community participation, how and to what extent data have driven the District's reform efforts, the impact of recent controversies, and prospects for the future of D.C.'s public schools.
  • March 2018 - Dean Michael Feuer provided the opening remarks at "The Limits of Civil Discourse" featuring Moshe Halbertal, noted Israeli philosopher, professor, and writer, and Jeffrey Goldberg, editor-in-chief of The Atlantic. The conversation was facilitated by Dr. Erica Brown, Director of the Mayberg Center for Jewish Education and Leadership.
  • February 2018 - GSEHD, in partnership with the National Council on Measurement in Education, hosted a presentation about ESSA, equity, and measurement in education featuring John B. King, Jr., President and CEO of The Education Trust and Former U.S. Secretary of Education, with Dean Michael Feuer. Read more in the GW Today article, "Obama Education Secretary Calls for Closing Racial, Economic Gulf in Educational Outcomes."
  • November 2017 - Dean Michael Feuer was 1uoted in the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP)'s press release, District of Columbia joins CAEP in Commitment to National Excellence in Educator Preparation. D.C. signed a partnership agreement with CAEP, joining 30 states committed to the rigorous CAEP educator preparation standards.
  • October 2017 - The Network on Global Educational Opportunity (n-GEO), led by Dean Michael Feuer, hosted a one-day workshop on October 24, which facilitated a research-informed discussion on the impact of privatization, market-driven reforms and other choice-based schooling options on education systems.
  • September 2017 - Dean Michael Feuer presented "Conversations that Matter - Private Wealth, Public Good" with Dr. Chip Edelsberg about the complex issues surrounding philanthropy and education. Read more in the GW Today article, "Individual Philanthropy May Be a Source of Public Power."
  • February 2017 - Dean Michael Feuer was quoted in the EdSource article, "DeVos confirmation triggered outpouring of support for public education system."