CPRE : Consortium for Policy Research in Education

James Spillane

Senior Research Specialist, CPRE

Spencer T. and Ann W. Olin Professor in Learning and Organizational Change; Chair and Professor Human Development and Social Policy

Professional Biography

James Spillane's work explores the policy implementation process at the state, school district, school and classroom levels. He has worked to develop a cognitive perspective on the implementation process, exploring how local policy-makers, both administrators and teachers, come to understand state and national reforms. Spillane is also interested in organizational leadership and change; his work conceptualizes organizational leadership as a distributed practice involving formal and informal leaders, followers and a variety of organizational tools and artifacts. His most recent projects include a social network analysis of instructional advice structures in elementary schools, a study of how organizational routines enable and constrain practice in schools, and an examination of the selection and socialization of school principals.

Areas of Expertise

  • School leadership
  • Distributed leadership
  • Social network analysis
  • Organizational leadership
  • Policy implementation