Kathryn Anne Edwards


Washington, DC



  • RAND Corporation
  • Economic Policy Institute
  • National Institute on Aging


  • Labor markets and unemployment
  • Social Security
  • Economic inequality and poverty


  • University of Wisconsin-Madison, Ph.D.
  • University of Texas at Austin, B.A.

Recent Coverage

JAN 11, 2024

Bloomberg | Nice Soft Landing, America. But What Comes Next? (Opinion)

“The ability to identify such bad policies, and the willingness to remake them, will define the next chapter in America’s economic story. The coming election year, arriving in the wake of an epic cataclysm, should be an ideal opportunity. Unfortunately, there’s little prospect of a substantial debate about such crucial issues as housing affordability or how to bolster retirement savings.”

OCT 6, 2023

Buzzfeed | Economist’s Viral Speech Exposes US Childcare Funding Crisis

An economist named Kathryn Anne Edwards recently addressed a Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs subcommittee in a now-viral video about the devastating impact of nationwide childcare center closings, saying, “In surveys, paid childcare providers say that when Rescue Act funds end, they will either cut staff wages, raise prices, close classrooms, or close altogether. It would be unheard of for any combination of those actions not to push parents, largely mothers, out of the workforce.”

AUG 14, 2023

Washington Post | America Is About to Fall Off a Child Care Cliff (Opinion)

“If most or all of the affected parents suddenly stop working, the labor force participation rate could quickly fall by a percentage point or more, an ominous development in a market where employers are already struggling to find workers. More likely, the effect will be subtle. The parents who lose care will be dispersed throughout the economy, across myriad industries, occupations, locations and employers. In the longer run, families will internalize the cost of child care the way they have for years: by having fewer children and working less.”

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About Kathryn

Kathryn Anne Edwards is a PhD Economist and freelance economic policy consultant. Her research focuses on the intersection of labor markets and public policy, including unemployment and unemployment insurance (UI); women’s labor supply after children; the challenge facing women in retirement; poverty alleviation; and Social Security. She previously served as adjunct economist at RAND and a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Edwards completed her Ph.D. in economics at the University of Wisconsin. While a student, she was a trainee at the Center for Demography and Human Ecology, a graduate fellow of the Institute for Research on Poverty, and a summer fellow at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago through the Committee on the Status of Women in the Economics Profession.