Assets and Inequalities

The Assets and Inequalities policy concentration will enable students to develop a theoretical and empirical understanding of the causes, manifestations and consequences of social and economic inequalities, and prepares them for challenging careers developing research and policy that addresses and aims to eliminate these inequalities.

Focus of the Concentration

Students in the concentration will grapple with questions such as:

  • What are the causes and consequences of social and economic inequalities associated with race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, immigration status, social class, and age?
  • How are aging and disability, health, mental health and substance abuse, and children, youth, and family policies and programs shaped by current social and economic inequalities, and how may these programs and policies best contribute to reducing and eliminating such inequalities?

Graduates of the program assume roles as policy analysts, researchers, educators, program planners, and advocates. The concentration helps students achieve their goals through mentoring and advising, formal courses, colloquia, research responsibilities, and interaction with faculty.

Students in this concentration are advised by faculty and work on research projects directed by the Institute on Assets and Social Policy, a research institute dedicated to promoting a better understanding of how assets and asset-building opportunities improve the well-being and financial stability of individuals and families left out of the economic mainstream.

Required Concentration Courses

Sample Dissertations

  • Jodi Benenson, 2015. “Civic Engagement as a Pathway toward Economic Opportunity: A Multimethod Study of Low- income Individuals.”
  • Lars Dietrich, 2016. “How School and Student Characteristics Predict Bullying Behaviors in American Secondary Schools.”
  • Rebecca Marie Loya, 2012. “Economic Consequences of Sexual Violence for Survivors: Implications for Social Policy and Social Change.”
  • Jessica Harper Santos, 2015. “Beyond Supply and Demand: Networks of Opportunity and Inequality in Health Careers.”
  • Erika Smith, 2015. “Stability and Success: The Role of Financial Aid and Assets in the Persistence of Youth Aging Out of Foster Care in Postsecondary Education and Training.”