Dr. Jeehee Han is a visiting assistant professor and an ACES Fellow in her first year at the Bush School. Dr. Han teaches policy analysis and has a research focus on housing and education policy.
My name is Jeehee Han. I am a visiting assistant professor and an Accountability, Climate, Equity, and Scholarship (ACES) Fellow in the Department of Public Service and Administration at the Bush School of Government and Public Service. I started last fall, so this is my first year at the Bush School. I have taught one policy analysis class so far. My research focuses on housing and education policy.
What research project/s do you currently have underway? What are you hoping to learn through your research?
A lot of my research focuses on public housing and the educational implications of living in public housing or having to move out of public housing. Public housing, while being the earliest housing assistance program by the federal government, is probably the most unpopular one as well. The federal government has been criticized for making public housing households live in high-poverty neighborhoods and having negative consequences for children.
Through my research, I want to understand what part of public housing is causing those negative consequences. For many households, public housing is the only assistance program they have access to. Hopefully, through my research, I can understand what about public housing we can improve and whether it is actually bad for children to live in public housing.
How could your research impact society?
I hope, aside from politics and aside from popular beliefs, to empirically answer the questions we could have about housing and education policies. For example, if my research shows that it is the neighborhood that public housing is in that has negative effects on children, then we can focus on making community improvements to the neighborhoods that are surrounding public housing. We could also focus on keeping public housing projects that are in very good neighborhoods but providing alternative housing options for families living in public housing that are in worse-off neighborhoods. I wish my study results could provide empirical support for shaping the future of housing and education policies.
What do you like most about working at the Bush School?
I am impressed every day by the resources available at the Bush School, including the people. The faculty here are beyond collegial and supportive of each other, including junior faculty like me. They provide constructive feedback to my work. Also, being able to see them, and having exemplary scholars that I can try to emulate, I believe, is a huge resource. Also, the students – they are very hard-working, passionate and respectful. I learn a lot from them too.
Have you ever worked outside of academia? If so, what did you do, and how does it translate to your research and/or teaching?
I worked at the U.S. Department of Education and the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, where I got to actually have access to administrative data on schools and districts, and also households that were eligible for affordable housing. Being able to experience how data can be used to shape education and housing policy sparked my interest to study housing and education policy.
What research or teaching accomplishment are you most proud of?
I am most proud of my dissertation work. One of my dissertation chapters is published in the Regional Science and Urban Economics journal. For another chapter, I received a dissertation grant from the Horowitz Foundation for Social Policy. As a junior faculty, I wish to make more research and teaching accomplishments while being at the Bush School.
What is your favorite class to teach and why?
Policy Analysis is the only class I have taught at the Bush School so far and is also my favorite. I loved learning my students’ policy interests, including education, human trafficking, parks and recreation, mental health and women empowerment, to name some. I enjoyed having diverse interests and perspectives in the classroom and being able to discuss them together.