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Policy Expansion of School Choice in the American States, 1991-2005 (ICPSR 20427)

Principal Investigator(s): Wong, Kenneth K., Brown University; Langevin, Warren E., Vanderbilt University


This research study explored the policy expansion of school choice within the methodological approach of event history analysis. The first section provided a comparative overview of state adoption of public school choice laws. After creating a statistical portrait of the contemporary landscape for school choice, the authors introduced event history analysis as a methodological solution to the problem of measuring policy expansion. Building on previous studies in the social science literature, we discussed political, economic, and social factors related to the passage of charter school laws. A multivariate analysis found state adoption was significantly related to partisan gubernatorial control, classroom spending, private schools, education finance litigation, and minority representation. The final section discussed the empirical results in the modern policy environment and proposed future directions for comparative state research. This publication archive contains political and economic variables related to the policy diffusion of charter school laws in the United States. We present the longitudinal data collection to help social scientists replicate our event history analysis and compare the statistical results with previous studies of public school choice laws. This data collection features statistical indicators from federal government agencies and policy organizations. Our research design utilizes the standard definitions for several variables in the Common Core of Data, a national survey of local school districts and schools conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics at the United States Department of Education, and the Private School Universe Survey. We supplemented the state educational variables with cross-sectional observations of median per capita income from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and related political and economic variables from the political science literature.

Access Notes

  • These data are flagged as replication datasets and are distributed exactly as they arrived from the data depositor. ICPSR has not checked or processed this material. Users should consult the investigator(s) if further information is desired.

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.


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Study Description


Wong, Kenneth K., and Warren E. Langevin. Policy Expansion of School Choice in the American States, 1991-2005. ICPSR20427-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2007-07-18. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR20427.v1

Persistent URL: https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR20427.v1

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)


This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Education (R305A040043)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    educational policy, policy analysis, school choice

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 1991--2005

Data Collection Notes:

The data are in three formats, Stata, csv, and Excel.

These data are part of ICPSR's Publication-Related Archive and are distributed exactly as they arrived from the data depositor. ICPSR has not checked or processed this material. Users should consult the investigators if further information is desired.



Original ICPSR Release:   2007-07-18

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