Emily Putnam-Hornstein is the John A. Tate Distinguished Professor for Children in Need and the Director of Policy Practice at the School of Social Work at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She also maintains appointments as a Distinguished Scholar at the University of Southern California where she co-directs the Children’s Data Network and as a research specialist with the California Child Welfare Indicators Project at UC Berkeley.
Emily’s current research focuses on the application of epidemiological methods to improve the surveillance of non-fatal and fatal child abuse and neglect. Her analysis of large-scale, linked administrative data has provided insight into where scarce resources may be most effectively targeted and informs understanding of maltreated children within a broader, population-based context. Her research has been used to develop risk stratification tools, including those implemented in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, and Los Angeles County, California. These tools support caseworkers and supervisors in reviewing hundreds of factors relevant to a child’s risk and safety when making initial screening and triaging decisions. Emily is the recipient of the Forsythe Award for Child Welfare Leadership from the National Association of Public Child Welfare Administrators and the Commissioner’s Award from the Children’s Bureau. Emily graduated from Yale University with a BA in Psychology, received her MSW from Columbia University, and earned her Ph.D. in Social Welfare from the University of California at Berkeley.