William Zumeta

Professor Emeritus of Public Policy & Governance and Education

William Zumeta joined the Evans School faculty in the fall of 1985 as an Assistant Professor. He was promoted to Professsor in 2000. He has held a joint faculty appointment in the College of Education since 1990. He served as Associate Dean of the Evans School from 2001-05, was Interim Dean from March-August, 1988, and was faculty coordinator for the School’s Ph.D. in Public Policy and Management program from 2008-2014. He also served as co-director of the Collaborative Researchers in Education Sciences Training (CREST) program, an interdepartmental Ph.D. training program supported by the U.S. Department of Education, from 2009-2015. He was the recipient of the Graduate Dean’s Award in 2010-11 for service to graduate education at the University of Washington.

Zumeta teaches in the areas of policy analysis and public policies toward K-12 and higher education as well as education and the workforce. His research interests focus on higher education policy including accountability; finance; graduate education and academic research policies; public policies affecting private higher education; and education and workforce policies including the role of community and technical colleges. He was a Senior Fellow of the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education from 2005-2011 and has been a Fellow of the TIAA Institute since 2008. He was President of the Association for the Study of Higher Education, a national scholarly organization, in 2009-10.

Professor Zumeta’s research has been supported by a wide range of government agencies, foundations, and national groups, including the National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of Education, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Lilly Endowment, Pew Charitable Trusts, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, Spencer Foundation, TIAA Institute, and many national bodies and state agencies. He previously taught at the University of British Columbia, UCLA, and the Claremont Graduate University. Earlier, he worked for the City Council of Philadelphia and the California State Department of Finance.

Zumeta holds M.P.P. and Ph.D. degrees from the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, as well as a B.A in Political Science from Haverford College.



  • Public Policy Analysis
  • Higher Education Policy and Finance
  • Zumeta, W., & Huntington-Klein, N. 2017. Utilizing Independent Colleges and Universities to Fulfill States’ Degree Attainment Goals. Washington, DC: Council of Independent Colleges.
  • LaSota, R., & Zumeta, W.M. 2016. “What Matters in Increasing Community College Students’ Upward Transfer to the Baccalaureate Degree: Findings from the Beginning Postsecondary Study 2003-2009.”  Research in Higher Education 57(2), 152-189.
  • Zumeta, W.M., & Huntington-Klein, N. 2015. The Cost-Effectiveness of Undergraduate Education at Private Nondoctoral Colleges and Universities: Implications for Students and Public Policy. Washington, D.C.: Council of Independent Colleges.
  • Li, A.Y., & Zumeta, W.M. 2015. State Support for Higher Education. In The Palgrave International Handbook of Higher Education Policy and Governance, J. Huisman, H. de Boer, D. D. Dill, & M. Souto-Otero (Eds.), 463-82. NY & London: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Zumeta, W. M. 2015. “U.S. Higher Education Finance: Historical Decentralization and Diversity, Recent Decline.” In Memoria e Ricerca 48:55-70 (in Italian).
  • Kinne, A., & Zumeta, W.M. 2015. “California: Facing Pressing Challenges in Expanding Mass Higher Education.” In Access and Expansion Post-Massification: Opportunities and Barriers to Further Growth in Higher Education Participation. In B. Jongbloed & H. Vossensteyn (Eds.), pp. 85-106. New York: Routledge.
  • Doyle, W. & Zumeta, W.M. 2014. State-Level Responses to the Access and Completion Challenge in the Era of Austerity. Annals of Political & Social Science 655(1), 79-98.
  • Blume, G., & Zumeta W. M. 2014. The State of State College Readiness Policies. American Behavioral Scientist 58(8), 1071-1092.
  • Zumeta, W. M., Breneman, D. W., Callan, P. M., & Finney, J. E. 2012. Financing American Higher Education in the Era of Globalization. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard Education Press. Available at: harvardeducationpress.org (1-888-437-1437).
  • Levy, D. & Zumeta, W. M. (Eds.) 2011. Private Higher Education and Public Policy: A Global Comparative View, Special Issue: Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis 13(4).
  • Zumeta, W. M. 2011. State Policy and Private Higher Education in the U.S.A.: Understanding the Variation in Comparative Perspective. Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis 13(4), 425-442.
  • Zumeta, W. M. 2011. What Does It Mean to be Accountable? Dimensions and Implications of Higher Education’s Public Accountability. ASHE 2010 Presidential Address. Review of Higher Education 35(1), 131-148.
  • Morrison, E., Rudd, E., Nerad, M., & Zumeta, W. M. 2011. What Matters for Excellence in Ph.D. Programs? Latent Constructs of Doctoral Program Quality Used by Early Career Social Scientists. Journal of Higher Education, 82(5), 535-563.
  • Zumeta, W. M. & Kinne, A. 2011. Accountability Policies: Directions Old and New. In Heller (Ed.). The States and Public Higher Education Policy: Access, Affordability, and Accountability. 2nd Edition (pp. 173-199). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Univ. Press.
  •   Zumeta, W., &LaSota (2010). “Recent Patterns in Private Higher Education in the U.S.” In K. Kinser et al, The Global Growth of Private Higher Education (pp. 91-106). Association for Study Higher Education Research Reports Series. SF: Jossey-Bass. Zumeta, W. 2010. California. In D. Dill & F. van Vught (Eds.). National Innovation and the Academic Research Enterprise: Public Policy in Global Perspective (pp. 480-526). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
  • Zumeta, W. 2010. The ‘Great Recession’: Implications for Higher Education. In NEA 2010 Almanac of Higher Education (pp. 29-42). Washington, DC: National Education Association.
  • Zumeta, W. 2010. “Does the U.S. Need More College Graduates to Remain a World Class Economic Power?” A white paper prepared for a national debate on this subject held February 26, 2010 at the National Press Club. The debate was broadcast by PBS.
  • Zumeta, W., & Frankle, D. 2007. California Community Colleges: Making Them Stronger and More Affordable. San Jose, CA: National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, March 2007.
  • Zumeta, W. 2007. “The New Accountability: The Potential of Performance Compacts in Higher Education” in National CrossTalk 15(1), 12-13.
  • Zumeta, W. 2006. Public Higher Education in Washington State: Aspirations Are Misaligned with Fiscal Structure and Politics. In R. Ehrenberg (Ed.). What’s Happening to Public Higher Education? (pp. 275-302). Westport, CT: Praeger/American Council on Education.
  • Zumeta, W. 2004. State Higher Education Financing: Demand Imperatives Meet Structural, Cyclical, and Political Constraints. In E.P. St. John & M. D. Parsons (Eds.). Public Funding of Higher Education: Changing Contexts and New Rationales (pp. 75-107). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004.
  • Zumeta, W., & Raveling, J. S. 2002-03. Attracting the Best and the Brightest. Issues in Science & Technology 19(2), 36-40.
  • Thompson, F., & Zumeta, W. (2001).  Effects of Key State Policies on Private Colleges and Universities: Sustaining Private-Sector Capacity in the Face of the Higher Education Access Challenge.  Economics of Education Review 20, 517-531.

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