University at Buffalo

Sarah A. Robert (she/ella)

Sarah A. Robert

Affiliated Faculty, Department of Global Gender & Sexuality Studies

Associate Professor


Specialty/Research Focus

Critical Policy Analysis; Gender Studies; Gender, Culture, and Equity; Global Issues; Educational Policy; Ethnography; Qualitative Research Methods; Politics of Education; Sociology of Education

Contact Information
514 Baldy Hall
North Campus
Phone: 716-645-4046

Professional Summary:

Dr. Sarah A. Robert is an international education policy expert. She critiques how policy and politics shape and are shaped by the intersectional qualities of gender in global, South American, and US urban contexts. Her ethnographies and qualitative, social science-informed studies are concentrated on three areas: teachers’ work, school food, and curriculum/textbooks. As a first-gen, feminist, interdisciplinary public intellectual, she strives to demystify policy, to cultivate and support policy protagonists through teaching and long-term community collaborations, and to transform educational decision making into an inclusive process focused on realizing human rights and just transitions in educational institutions and for societies.

Education and Training:
  • PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Educational Policy Studies
  • MA, University of California, San Diego, Latin American Studies
  • BA, University of Rochester, History and Political Science
Awards and Honors:
  • Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Award; UB Graduate School of Education; 2019-05-03;
  • 2016 Critics’ Choice Book Award; American Educational Studies Association; 2016-11-11;
  • 2012 Critics’ Choice Book Award; American Educational Studies Association; 2012-11-09;
Recent Publications:
Journal Special Issue:
  • Robert, S.A., Yu, M., & Sauerbraunn, F., & Özkazanç-Pan, B., Eds. (2023). Special Issue: Intersectionality and education work during COVID-19 transitions. Gender, Work, and Organizations 30(2). Video short:
Edited Book:
  • Gaddis, J., & Robert, S. A. (Eds.). (2024). Transforming School Food Politics Around the World. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. Open access
Journal Article:
  • Moreau, M.P., & Robert, S.A. (2023). Re/definitions of teachers and teaching work in UK and US policy discourses under Covid-19 and their implications for social justice. International Studies in the Sociology of Education (ISSE).
  • Robert, S.A., Yu, M., & Sauerbraunn, F., & Özkazanç-Pan, B. (2023). Starting a dialogue in difficult times about intersectionality and education work. Gender, Work, and Organizations.
  • Gaddis, J. & Robert, S. A. (2024, June 4). Organic cheese and free lunch for all: what the US can learn from other nations about better school meals. The Guardian, School Food Fights.
Recent Presentations:
Invited Lectures:
  • Robert, S. A. (2024, September 27). “Policy protagonism for transforming politics and their analysis.” Alumni Speaker Series. University of Wisconsin-Madison, School of Education, Educational Policy Studies Department.;
  • Robert, S.A. (2023, March 29). ‘¡Vení a ver cómo trabajo!’ Género, políticas educativas y trabajo docente. Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina.;
  • Robert, S. A. (2024, April 11). An Integrated Perspective on Apple’s Contributions to the Sociology of Education and Education Policy Analysis. A paper presented as part of the symposium, Celebrating Five Decades of Curriculum Theorizing and Praxis: The Enduring Impact of Michael Apple’s Contributions. Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Philadelphia, PA.;
  • Robert, S. A., & Gaddis, J. (2024, June 5-8.) The global right to food in schools: Policy protagonism in support of universal school meals that support children, communities, and the environment. [Paper presentation.] Joint annual meeting of Agriculture, Food, and Human Values Society and Association for the Study of Food and Society, Syracuse, NY.;
  • Robert, S.A., & Gaddis, J.E. (2024, April 11-14). School Food Politics for Social Justice, Human Rights, and Sustainability [Working roundtable]. American Educational Research Association, Philadelphia, PA.;
Recent Grants:
  • STEMcyclists: Black and Brown Youth Transforming STEM via Bikes; Federal; National Science Foundation ($1,990,555); Awarded; (01/08/2024-12/18/2026)
  • Gender, Teachers, and (Covid) Policies; Foundation and Research Organization; Gender Institute, Faculty Research Grant ($5,000); Awarded; (05/29/2023-05/19/2025)
  • Teaching, Gender, & (COVID-19) Policies Project.; Foundation and Research Organization; Associate Professor Fund for Global and International Research. Office of International Education. ($20,000); Awarded; (08/22/2022-05/23/2025)
Recent Activities:
Professional Service:
  • Robert, S. A., Chair. (2024). 2024 George and Louise Spindler Award Committee. American Anthropological Association, Council on Anthropology and Education.
  • Elected Member-at-Large, Association for the Anthropology of Policy (ASAP).
  • Director. (2011-2022). UB Social Studies Education Programs
Recent Editorships:
  • International Editorial Board Member; Pensamiento Educativo Latinoamericano (PEL).
  • Associate Editor; Gender, Work, and Organizations
  • Associate Editor - Special Issue; Gender, Work, and Organizations
  • Editorial Board Member; Policy Futures in Education

Contact Information

514 Baldy Hall
North Campus
Phone: 716-645-4046