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  1. Cities and the Creative Class

    Cities and regions have long captured the imagination of sociologists, economists, and urbanists. From Alfred Marshall to Robert Park and Jane Jacobs, cities have been seen as cauldrons of diversity and difference and as fonts for creativity and innovation. Yet until recently, social scientists concerned with regional growth and development have focused mainly on the role of firms in cities, and particularly on how these firms make location decisions and to what extent they concentrate together in agglomerations or clusters.

  2. Rethinking Crime and Immigration

    The summer of 2007 witnessed a perfect storm of controversy over immigration to the United States. After building for months with angry debate, a widely touted immigration reform bill supported by President George W. Bush and many leaders in Congress failed decisively. Recriminations soon followed across the political spectrum.

  3. Featured Essay: The Contributions of Charles Tilly to the Social Sciences

    Evaluating Charles Tilly’s contributions to the social sciences is not an easy task: “Chuck Tilly was a master of sociological thinking and methodology,” wrote two of his former students when he passed away ten years ago; “But he was sufficiently concerned about getting to the heart and dynamics of questions and topics that he never permitted the blinkers of disciplinary orthodoxy to stand in his way” (Michelson and Wellman 2008).
  4. Political Consequences of Survival Strategies among the Urban Poor

    Combining ethnographic and statistical methods, this study identifies interlocking mechanisms that help explain how disadvantaged neighborhoods influence their residents’ political capacity. Support systems that arise in low-income neighborhoods promote social interaction that helps people make ends meet, but these systems also expose residents to heavy doses of adversity, which dampens perceptions of collective political capacity.
  5. Something Old, Something New: When Gender Matters in the Relationship between Social Support and Health

    This paper investigates how social support differentially benefits self-rated health among men and women hospitalized with heart disease. Using cross-sectional data about patients admitted to a university hospital, we examine the extent to which gender moderates effects for the frequency of contact with family, friends, and neighbors on health and whether these effects differ between those with new versus established diagnoses. We find that gender differentiates the effect of nonmarital family contact on health but only when heart disease is newly diagnosed.
  6. Neighborhood Violence, Peer Effects, and Academic Achievement in Chicago

    Research shows that exposure to local neighborhood violence is associated with students’ behavior and engagement in the classroom. Given the social nature of schooling, these symptoms not only affect individual students but have the potential to spill over and influence their classmates’ learning, as well.
  7. Timing Is Everything: Late Registration and Stratified Access to School Choice

    School choice policies necessarily impose registration timelines, constraining access to schools of choice for students who register late. Drawing on administrative data, survey data, and interviews with 33 parents in Boston, we find that late registration is common and highly stratified: Nearly half of black kindergarteners miss the first registration deadline, a rate almost three times higher than their white peers, consigning them to the least preferred schools.
  8. “For Now, We Are in Waiting”: Negotiating Time in Chile's Social Housing System

    Waiting for low‐income housing is an increasingly common experience of the urban poor in both the global North and South, although little attention has been paid to its effects. Engaging a growing literature on time in systems of social provision, this article presents an ethnographic case study of waiting among poor housing‐seekers in a peripheral district of Santiago, Chile.

  9. Where Inequality Takes Place: A Programmatic Argument for Urban Sociology

    Spatial inequality is an increasingly vital concept in urban sociology, capturing the inequitable allocation of resources across space. But it omits an important and often overlooked form of inequality that takes place at a more immediate and direct level, inhering not in the relationship between spaces, but within the fabric of place itself. This paper argues for “emplaced inequalities”—power imbalances that are manifest in the material, symbolic, and institutional frameworks that guide behavior in a specific urban setting.

  10. Memory Politics: Growth Coalitions, Urban Pasts, and the Creation of “Historic” Philadelphia

    Facing economic changes and disinvestment, powerful actors in post‐World War II American cities attempted to define the city as a space of public culture to confront demographic shifts, suburban growth, and the breakdown of community. Some civic actors, especially in older Eastern cities, looked to a nostalgic and heroic past where a theme of American identity became salient as a result of the Cold War and rapid cultural and economic changes in the postwar era. To achieve urban growth, elites argued for urban redevelopment policies based on historical themes and imagery.