Senior Lecturer on Education
Faculty Co-Chair, Education Policy and Analysis (EPA)
Carrie Conaway is a senior lecturer at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Until June 2019, she was the chief strategy and research officer for the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and led the agency’s Office of Planning and Research, which strengthens planning, data and resource use, and the focus on evidence in the agency and the field to improve outcomes for Massachusetts students.
She served as DESE’s principal investigator on numerous evaluations of state education programs and has published two peer-reviewed articles on connecting research to practice. Her team also managed the agency’s strategic planning process and built tools that help districts benchmark their performance and deploy their resources more effectively. She led the development of DESE’s top-scoring, $250 million Race to the Top proposal and managed its implementation, as well as winning several other grants to support state research, evaluation, and data use initiatives. Previously she was the deputy director of the New England Public Policy Center at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and an associate editor of the Bank’s flagship publication, Regional Review. She also served as the president of the Association for Education Finance and Policy in 2018-19.
She has nearly 20 years of experience in integrating research and practice to improve public policy. She holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Oberlin College; a master’s degree in policy analysis and labor policy from the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota; and a master’s degree in sociology and social policy from Harvard University.