David Osher

Vice President and Institute Fellow

David Osher is a vice president and Institute Fellow at AIR. Dr. Osher’s expertise includes violence prevention, school safety, supportive school discipline, conditions for learning and school climate, social and emotional learning, youth development and thriving, cultural competence and responsiveness, family engagement, collaboration, trauma sensitive approaches, mental health services and implementation science. He has and continues to lead and serve as senior advisor to research and practice related contracts and grants across children’s’ ecosystems. His evaluation work includes impact and implementation evaluations of initiatives and programs, systematic reviews, and expert panels. He is or was Principal Investigator of experimental, quasi-experimental, and qualitative research studies that examine whole child, youth development, and social and emotional learning programs in the U.S. and internationally. Osher authored or co-authored or edited 400 books, monographs, chapters, articles, and reports including Creating Safe, Equitable, Engaging Schools: A Comprehensive Approach; Keeping Students Safe and Helping Them Thrive: A Collaborative Handbook on School Safety, Mental Health, and Wellness; and The Science of Learning and Development.

Read our Q&A with David Osher about how his work builds upon the science of learning and development.

Before coming to AIR, Dr. Osher was a professor of history and sociology and served as Dean of an experimental liberal arts college and of two innovative professional schools of human services. He received The Juanita Cunningham Evans Memorial Award for Contributions in School Mental Health and the Joseph Zins Distinguished Senior Scholar Award for Outstanding Contributions to Action Research in Social and Emotional Learning. He is lead editor of the 2023 and 2025 volumes of Review of Research in Education.