Heerwig received her PhD in Sociology from New York University in 2013. She is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Stony Brook University where she serves as a faculty advisor for the University's interdisciplinary computational social science initiative. Heerwig's past research received funding from the National Science Foundation and the Russell Sage Foundation. Her research interests include public opinion and political attitudes, political polarization, and the role of elites in American politics.
During her fellowship, Heerwig will write a book on the evolution of donation strategies among elite individual campaign contributors using an original, longitudinal dataset. The project explores how these wealthy elites diverge from ordinary voters, and sheds light on the role of wealthy elites in the process of political polarization.