Professor Heckman on the State of the Union Address View Statement

Professor Heckman issued the following statement in response to the State of the Union address on January 28, 2014. “It’s heartening to see that for two years early childhood education has been a prominent part of the President’s policy proposals. There is a strong body of evidence that shows early childhood education has great value for…

Letter to the Budget Conference Committee View Statement

In October 2013, Professor Heckman sent a letter to the congressional conference committee tasked with negotiating a budget deal by mid-December, urging the conferees to consider smart investments in early childhood development programs as part of their budget plan. He attached a letter he sent in the fall of 2011 to the Joint Select Committee…

Invest in Early Childhood Development: Reduce Deficits, Strengthen the Economy View Summary

In this two-page summary document, Professor Heckman argues that the best way to reduce deficits is to invest in quality early childhood development for disadvantaged children. It creates better education, health, social and economic outcomes that increase revenue and reduce the need for costly social spending. “The highest rate of return in early childhood development…

Cognitive Skills Are Not Enough Watch Video

This video captures a 2010 presentation Professor Heckman made in Chicago to business leaders and policymakers. Professor Heckman argues that developing early social and emotional skills is critical for creating a productive adult—countering the argument that cognitive skills matter most. An excerpt of his speech is followed by testimonials from business leaders and local policymakers…