Dana Burde

Assistant Professor of International Education

Phone: 212 998 5052

Homepage: www.danaburde.com

Dana Burde is an assistant professor of international education at New York University's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, an affiliate of NYU Abu Dhabi, the NYU Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service, and the Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies at Columbia University. 

To read about protecting education from attack in Afghanistan in a New York Times Op-Ed please click here.


My research focuses on the effects of conflict on education, the efforts of humanitarian organizations to mitigate these effects, and the relationship between education and political violence or peace. I am particularly interested in research that can be used to inform policy and that has the potential to help state and non-state actors create positive social change. I use diverse research methods including qualitative case studies and complex field experiments (also known as randomized controlled trials) that rely on both large-scale surveys and in-depth, qualitative interviews.

Before coming to NYU, I was an Associate Research Scholar/Post-Doctoral Fellow at Columbia University's Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies (SIWPS) and taught at Teachers College.  I received my PhD in Comparative Education and Political Science from Columbia University, Master's in Educational Administration/International Education from Harvard, and a BA in English Literature from Oberlin College.

I am currently working on three projects: assessing the learning outcomes and sustainability of community-based schools in Afghanistan as they transition from NGOs to government administration; understanding how youth aspirations and education affect youth participation in public life in Pakistan and Kenya; and learning how boosting community engagement affects performance in community-based schools in remote Afghan villages.  

The most optimistic findings of my recent work in Afghanistan come from my study of community-based schools in Ghor Province (with Leigh Linden).  We find that bringing education to remote Afghan villages eliminates gender disparity in enrollment between girls and boys.  In addition these children show significant academic achievement once they are there. To read more about this research, please see “Bringing Education to Afghan Girls: A Randomized Controlled Trial in Afghanistan.”

My new book, Schools for Conflict or for Peace in Afghanistan, published by Columbia University Press is available here.  My research has also been published in Comparative Education Review, American Economic Journal—Applied, Current Issues in Comparative Education, and the New York Times. Bloggers for the World Bank and The National Interest featured my work and it also appears on the Jameel-Poverty Action Lab website.

I have had research funded by the Spencer Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Institute of Peace, the Weikart Family Foundation, the Danish International Aid Agency, and USAID; awards total $4 million.

Audio Podcast

Click the play button above to listen to Dana Burde speak about her work with schools in Afghanistan

Selected Publications

  • Burde, D. (2014). Schools for Conflict or for Peace in Afghanistan. New York, NY: Columbia University Press. (link)
  • Burde, D. and Linden, L. (July 2013). Bringing Education to Afghan Girls: A Randomized Controlled Trial of Village-Based Schools. American Economic Journal-Applied. (link)
  • Burde, D. (2012). Assessing impact, bridging methodological divides: Randomized trials in Countries Affected by Conflict. Comparative Education Review. (link)
  • Burde, D. and Linden, L. (2012). The Effect of Village-Based Schools: Evidence from a Randomized Controlled Trial in Afghanistan. New York: NYU Steinhardt Working Paper. (view)
  • Burde, D., Kapit-Spitalny, A., Wahl, R., and Guven, O. (2011). Education and conflict mitigation: What the aid workers say. Washington, DC: US Agency for International Development, Education Quality Improvement Program 1. (view)
  • Burde, D. (2011). Innovative methods in education in emergencies research: A randomized trial assessing community-based schools in Afghanistan. In Karen Mundy and Sarah Dryden-Petersen, eds. Educating children in conflict zones: Research, policy, and practice for systemic changeā€”A tribute to Jackie Kirk. New York: Teachers College Press. (pp. 255-271).
  • Burde, D. (2011). NGOs. In Susan Talburt and Nancy Lesko, eds., Key Words in Youth Studies: Tracing Affects, Movements, Knowledges. New York: Routledge.
  • Burde, D. (2010). Preventing violent attacks on education in Afghanistan: Considering the role of community-based schools, in UNESCO, Protecting Education from Attack: A State of the Art Review. (pp. 245-259). (link)
  • Burde, D. (2009). Lost in translation: Parent teacher associations and reconstruction in Bosnia in the late 1990s. In Sobe, ed., American Post-Conflict Education Reform: From the Spanish-American War to Iraq. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Burde, D. (2007). Protecting Children from War and Ensuring their Prospects for the Future, Pilot Study 2005-2006: Preliminary Findings. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies, Columbia University. (view)
  • Burde, D. (2007). Empower or control? Education in emergencies and global governance. Current Issues in Comparative Education. 9(2) 55-64. (link)
  • Burde, D. (January 2005). Promoting stable education systems after a conflict. Forced Migration Review. (link)
  • Burde, D. (2004). International NGOs and best practices: The art of educational lending. In G. Steiner-Khamsi (Ed.), Global Politics of Educational Borrowing and Lending. New York: Teachers College Press.
  • Burde, D. (Spring 2004). Weak state, strong community? Promoting community participation in post-conflict countries. Current Issues in Comparative Education. 6(2) 73-87. (link)


  • 2007 : Spencer Foundation Grant
  • 2007 : National Science Foundation Grant
  • 2005 : Spencer Foundation Small Grant
  • 2005 : United States Institute of Peace Grant
  • 2005 : Weikart Family Foundation Grant
  • 2004 : Columbia University Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy


  • Politics, Education, and Conflict
  • Contemporary International Relations: Peace, Security, and Education
  • Comparative and International Education
  • International Development and Education
  • International Educational and Cultural Relations

Degrees Held

  • PhD Columbia University
    Comparative Education and Political Science
  • EdM Harvard University
    International Education
  • BA Oberlin College
    English Literature