Skip to Main Content
Maxwell School
Maxwell / News & Events

Lopoo wins 2017 Birkhead-Burkhead Award

PAIA Professor Lopoo Accepting Birkhead-Burhkead Award

Leonard M. Lopoo, professor of public administration and international affairs and director of the Maxwell School’s Center for Policy Research, is the 2017 recipient of the Birkhead-Burkhead Teaching Excellence Award and Professorship. His selection was announced at the 2017 Department of Public Administration and International Affairs (PAIA) convocation on June 30.

The Birkhead-Burkhead Award and Professorship is an annual award that recognizes outstanding teaching in PAIA. Recipients of the award are nominated by current students in the department and selected by a committee comprised of former award winners. Honorees hold the professorship for four years and offer the faculty address at the PAIA convocation in the year following their selection.

The award honors two former Maxwell School PAIA professors: Guthrie Birkhead and Jesse Burkhead. Guthrie Birkhead was a faculty member in the PAIA and Political Science Departments from 1950 until his death in 2013. He was dean of the Maxwell School from 1977 until 1988, and he served as director of the Metropolitan Studies Program (now part of Maxwell’s Center for Policy Research). Jesse Burkhead was a faculty member in the Department of Economics from 1949 until his death in 1996. An expert on public budgeting, he retired as Maxwell Professor of Economics.  In 1956, he authored the highly acclaimed book Government Budgeting.

Professor Lopoo has been a member of the Maxwell faculty since 2003. His research primarily involves the family and explores issues surrounding fertility, marriage, maternal employment, and social welfare policies designed to assist low-income populations. He recently co-founded the Maxwell X Lab, which utilizes social science and behavioral economics to analyze and improve policy and program outcomes. In partnership with public and nonprofit organizations, X Lab researchers conduct randomized field experiments in order to test which policies and programs are successful, and which are not.

Professor Lopoo is also a prolific scholar. He has been published in numerous academic journals, including DemographyJournal of Health Economics, Journal of Human Resources, Journal of Marriage and the Family, and Journal of Public Economics. He is currently the social policy co-editor of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, a post he has held since 2008.