Alan Zarychta, PhD
969 E. 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
Office Location: BW16
Alan Zarychta's research focuses on the politics of social services in Central and South America, especially in the areas of public health and environmental policy. Most broadly, he investigates the sources and effects of institutional reforms aiming to improve local service delivery—how public sector reforms are targeted, the contextual conditions that shape their effectiveness, and whether such reforms can fundamentally alter local governance systems.
Professor Zarychta is currently part of an interdisciplinary team working in collaboration with the Honduran Ministry of Health to study the effects of decentralized governance on the performance of local health systems in that country. He is also engaged in related projects on health sector reform in Guatemala and Nicaragua. This work has benefited from the generous support of the National Science Foundation and the Social Science Research Council.
At the University of Chicago, Professor Zarychta is also a Fellow at the Center for Health Administration Studies (CHAS) and a Faculty Affiliate at the Center for Global Health (CGH) and Center for Latin American Studies (CLAS). Prior to joining Crown Family School, he supported numerous US federal government agencies on issues of environmental policy while employed by IEc and was Director of Health Information Systems for the non-governmental organization Hombro a Hombro in Honduras.
The persistence of disparities in social development across countries is one of the major problems societies struggle to understand and address. This course will...
 Emmelhainz, Roger, Alan Zarychta, Tara Grillos, and Krister Andersson. 2021. “Linking Knowledge with Action when Engagement is Out of Reach: Three Contextual Features of Effective Public Health Communication.” Health Policy and Planning. https://doi.org/10.1093/heapol/czab105
 Zarychta, Alan, Tara Grillos, and Krister Andersson. 2021. “Accountability and Effort among Local Health Workers: Evidence from a Lab-in-the-Field Experiment.” International Public Management Journal. https://doi.org/10.1080/10967494.2021.1951408
 Alakoc, Burcu Pinar, Gulay Ugur Goksel, and Alan Zarychta. 2021. “Political Discourse and Public Attitudes toward Syrian Refugees in Turkey.” Comparative Politics. https://doi.org/10.5129/001041522X16263065025324
 Molina, Adriana, Tara Grillos, Alan Zarychta, and Krister Andersson. 2021. “Decentralization Can Help Increase Cooperation among Public Officials.” American Journal of Political Science. https://doi.org/10.1111/ajps.12606
 Grillos, Tara, Alan Zarychta, Jami Nelson-Nuñez. 2021. “Water Scarcity and Procedural Justice in Honduras: Community-based Management Meets Market-based Policy." World Development 142: 105451. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.worlddev.2021.105451
 Grillos, Tara, Alan Zarychta, and Krister Andersson. 2021. “Governance Reform, Decentralization, and Teamwork in Public Service: Evidence from the Honduran Health Sector. Public Administration. https://doi.org/10.1111/padm.12722
 Root, Elisabeth Dowling, Alan Zarychta, Bertha Bermudez Tapia, Tara Grillos, Krister Andersson, and Jane Menken. 2020. "Organizations matter in local governance: evidence from health sector decentralization in Honduras." Health Policy and Planning 35(9): 1168-79. https://doi.org/10.1093/heapol/czaa084
 Zarychta, Alan. 2020. “Making Social Services Work Better for the Poor: Evidence from a Natural Experiment with Health Sector Decentralization in Honduras.” World Development 133: 104996. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.worlddev.2020.104996
 Zarychta, Alan, Tara Grillos, and Krister Andersson. 2020. “Public Sector Governance Reform and the Motivation of Street-Level Bureaucrats in Developing Countries.” Public Administration Review 80(1): 75–91. https://doi.org/10.1111/puar.13132
 Zarychta, Alan, Krister Andersson, Elisabeth Root, Jane Menken, and Tara Grillos. 2019. “Assessing the impacts of governance reforms on health services delivery: a quasi-experimental, multi-method, and participatory approach. Health Services and Outcomes Research Methodology 19(4): 241–58. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10742-019-00201-8
 Zarychta, Alan. 2015. “Community Trust and Household Health: A Spatially-Based Approach with Evidence from Rural Honduras.” Social Science & Medicine 146: 85-94. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2015.08.046
 He, Yuan, Alan Zarychta, Joseph B. Ranz, Mary Carroll, Lori M. Singleton, Paria M. Wilson, and Elizabeth P. Schlaudecker. 2012. “Childhood Immunization Rates in Rural Intibuca, Honduras: An Analysis of a Local Database Tool and Community Health Center Records for Assessing and Improving Vaccine Coverage.” BMC Public Health 12(1): 1056. https://doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-12-1056
Alan Zarychta is an Assistant Professor in the University of Chicago Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice. His research focuses on the politics of social services in Central and South America, especially in the areas of public health and environmental policy. Most broadly, he investigates the sources and effects of institutional reforms aiming to improve local service delivery—how public sector reforms are targeted, the contextual conditions that shape their effectiveness, and whether such reforms can fundamentally alter local governance systems.
Professor Zarychta earned his PhD in Political Science from the University of Colorado Boulder. He also holds a MA in Public Policy from the University of Colorado Boulder and a BS in Education and Social Policy from Northwestern University.