Dr. Heller is an Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Michigan. She studies interventions to reduce crime and improve other life outcomes among disadvantaged youth. She uses large-scale experiments to isolate the causal effects of a variety of programs, including cognitive behavioral therapy-based interventions and summer jobs.
She holds a Ph.D. in Public Policy from the University of Chicago, a M.P.P. from Georgetown, and a B.A. in Psychology from Harvard.
Thinking, Fast And Slow? Some Field Experiments To Reduce Crime And Dropout In Chicago
Service Provision Risk Assessment (SPRA)
The Crime Lab designed the Service Provision Risk Assessment to help violence prevention organizations identify the people at the highest risk of future gun violence involvement and offer them intensive social services and supports.
Rapid Employment and Development Initiative (READI) Chicago
READI Chicago is a gun violence reduction initiative that provides almost two years of intensive programming to men at the highest risk of shooting or being shot.
One Summer Chicago Plus
Sara Heller and Jon Davis, in partnership with the Crime Lab, evaluated a youth jobs and mentoring program, One Summer Chicago Plus, which provided jobs to thousands of youth as part of the city’s anti-violence strategy.
Becoming a Man
Youth Guidance’s Becoming a Man (BAM) uses insights from behavioral science to help youth navigate high-stakes situations.