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2020 Grant Recipients

For Applications Received in 2019

David J. Amaral, University of California, Santa Cruz

Threatening Local Democracy: the political consequences of urban violence

David J. Amaral is a PhD candidate in the Politics Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz. His research focusses on local politics and policy, urban neighborhoods, poverty, inequality, and political participation.

Michele Cadigan, University of Washington

Cannabis-Infused Dreams: A Market at the Crossroads between Criminal and Conventional

Michele Cadigan is a PhD candidate of sociology at the University of Washington. Cadigan's work brings together frameworks from economic sociology, law and society, and criminal justice research to understand the relationship between markets and the criminal justice system and how race is implicated at the intersection of these institutions.

Christina Nefeli Caramanis, The University of Texas at Austin

Income, Policy, and Stable Center-Based Childcare: Towards Reducing the Achievement Gap

Christina Nefeli Caramanis is a doctoral candidate at UT Austin. Christina's research program uses advanced quantitative methods to examine how the social and economic context of families, in part shaped by the surrounding sociopolitical agenda, lead to the social reproduction of inequalities across the life course.

Andreas de Barros, Harvard University

Do Students Benefit from Blended Instruction? Experimental Evidence from India

​Special Award: Martunus Nijhoff Award

Andreas de Barros is a Ph.D. Candidate at Harvard's Graduate School of Education and a Principal Investigator at J-PAL South Asia. His research specializes in program evaluation and evidence-based education policy, in less developed countries.

Daniel Driscoll, University of California San Diego

A Comparative Analysis of Carbon Price Enactment

Daniel Driscoll is a PhD Candidate in Sociology at UCSD. Several key questions motivate his research: Why do some states, institutions, and people fight for the environment, while others do not? And what explains how, in some places but not others, movements and policies emerge in response to climate change?

Benjamin Elbers, Columbia University

Understanding changing racial school segregation in the U.S.

Special Award: John L. Stanley Award

Benjamin Elbers is a PhD candidate in sociology at Columbia University. His research focuses on inequality and stratification, with a special interest in school segregation and the connection between educational systems and labor markets. In his dissertation, he develops and applies new decomposition methods for segregation analysis.

Natalia Emanuel, Harvard University

Smudges: Criminal Records and Employment in the US

Natalia Emanuel is a PhD Candidate in the Economics Department at Harvard University. Her research focuses on personnel economics.

Prior to graduate study, Natalia received a BA in Economics at Yale University and an MSc in Evidence-Based Social Policy from Oxford University, where she studied as a Marshall Scholar.

Michael Evangelist, University of Michigan

Crime and Punishment in the Welfare State: How Political, Economic, and Social Factors Condition the Administration of Penalties for Program Violations

Michael Evangelist is a doctoral candidate in sociology at the University of Michigan. His work examines the social determinants of trust in society. He is currently investigating the potential for the punitive administration of public programs to undermine social trust.

Shannon Malone Gonzalez, The University of Texas at Austin

In Her Place: Black Women Redefining and Resisting Police Violence

Shannon Malone Gonzalez is a PhD candidate in sociology at The University of Texas at Austin. Her interests are criminology and social policy, and her research incorporates an intersectional analysis into the study of policing. Using mixed-methods, her dissertation investigates black women's experiences with police across social class.

Hunter Johnson, Claremont Graduate University

Does the Presence of Female and Minority Police Reduce the Use of Force?

I am a Ph.D. candidate in economics at Claremont Graduate University. My research interests are in law and economics, particularly issues pertaining to criminal justice. My recent research pertains to how differences in the composition of law enforcement affect outcomes related to crime rates, arrests, and the use of force.

Navin Kumar, Yale University

Social interactions and treatment outcomes from medication assisted treatment in opioid addiction

Navin Kumar is a PhD candidate at the Yale University Sociology Department. He centers on improving health outcomes in marginalized communities. He focuses on increasing uptake of gonorrhea and chlamydia testing among gay men. Related work explores how social networks affect retention among patients receiving treatment for opioid use disorder.

Joe LaBriola, University of California, Berkeley

Local Housing Policy and Wealth Inequality

Joe is a Ph.D. candidate in sociology at the University of California, Berkeley. His research explores two broad themes: how socioeconomically advantaged families are able to maintain and extend their advantages, and how precarious work conditions play an increasingly important role in the lives of marginalized populations.

Sadé Lindsay, The Ohio State University

Effects of Contradictory Signals on Post-Prison Labor Market Outcomes

Sadé Lindsay is a PhD candidate in sociology at The Ohio State University. Her research interests include prisoner reentry and employment, incarceration and health, and drug use and policy. Her dissertation examines how certifications earned in prison shape formerly incarcerated men's ability to find work upon release.

Tim McDonald, Pardee RAND Graduate School

Developing and Testing a Consumer-Driven Approach to Changing Incentives in American Healthcare

Tim McDonald is a doctoral candidate at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. His research focuses on methods for designing policy for large systems, and the application of these methods to socially important systems such as health, the economy, and national defense. He has an MPP from the Harvard Kennedy School.

Molly Merrill-Francis, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

The Impact of State Minimum Wage Laws on Fatal Occupational Injury

Molly Merrill-Francis is a Health Policy and Management doctoral candidate at JHSPH. Her research interest is using mixed methods to examine the intersection of social determinants of health and injury and violence prevention. She also holds an MPH in Health Behavior from UNC Chapel Hill.

Brittany Paige Mihalec-Adkins, Purdue University

Explaining Variation in Legal Outcomes and Well-Being Trajectories for Child Welfare-Involved Families in the Era of the Adoption and Safe Families Act

Brittany Paige Mihalec-Adkins is a PhD candidate in Human Development & Family Studies at Purdue University, studying contexts and consequences unique to non-voluntary, state-mandated child protective interventions – including the role of state/federal policies (and community-level implementation thereof) on both lived experiences and longitudinal outcomes for state-supervised children and parents.

Stephanie Casey Pierce, The Ohio State University

Locked Out and Locked Up? Investigating the Relationship Between Eviction and Incarceration

Stephanie Casey Pierce is a doctoral candidate at the John Glenn College of Public Affairs at Ohio State. Her current research uses mixed methods to investigate the dynamics of eviction and recidivism and tenants’ perceptions of causes of eviction. She holds an MPP from Georgetown University.

Daniel Prinz, Harvard University

Employer Responsibility for Disability Insurance in the Contingent Workforce: Evidence from the Netherlands

​Special Award: Robert K. Merton Award

Daniel Prinz is a PhD student at Harvard University. He studies the economics of social insurance programs, conducting empirical research on disability insurance programs in the U.S. and the Netherlands, and on the Medicaid and Medicare programs.

Owen Schochet, Georgetown University

Unpacking the causal effects of two-generation early intervention services on the outcomes of low-income children and their families

Owen Schochet is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Psychology at Georgetown University. His research uses rigorous experimental and quasi-experimental methods to examine the effectiveness of publicly-funded early childhood education programs in promoting the development of low-income children, including through their effects on parents’ human capital and parenting skills.

Jessica C. Smith, Virginia Commonwealth University

Assessing School Safety in the Age of Threat Assessment: A Policy Study

Jessica C. Smith is a third year doctoral student in the Public Policy and Administration Program at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she also received her M.S. in Criminal Justice. Jessica's research focuses on school safety and threat assessment. Her research is informed by her prior experience in state government.

Noémie Sportiche, Harvard University

Does Economic Growth Benefit All? The Health Consequences of Being Poor in a Booming City Economy

Special Award: Eli Ginzberg Award

Noémie Sportiche is a PhD candidate in Health Policy at Harvard University, where she studies interactions between urban policies, urban development, and health. Her dissertation examines how housing markets impact health. Previously, Noémie earned degrees in cognitive science and public health and spent four years working as an urban planner.

Arielle W. Tolman, Northwestern University

Criminal Prosecution of Prisoners with Mental Illness

Special Award: Donald R. Cressey Award

Arielle W. Tolman is a JD/PhD Candidate in Sociology at Northwestern University and a Doctoral Fellow at the American Bar Foundation. She received her BA in Sociology and Neuroscience and Behavior from Wesleyan University in 2010 and her MA in Sociology from Northwestern University in 2015.

Matthew Unrath, University of California, Berkeley

Can Nudges Increase Take-up of the Earned Income Tax Credit?: Evidence from Multiple Field Experiments

Special Award: Trustees Award

Matt Unrath is a PhD candidate in public policy at UC Berkeley and a Research Fellow at the California Policy Lab. His research focuses on households' interactions with transfer policies and means-tested programs. Matt holds a MPP from UC Berkeley and a BA in International Studies from Boston College.

Fabricio Vasselai, University of Michigan

Elections in the AI era: using Machine Learning and Multi-Agent Systems to detect and study menaces to election integrity

Special Awards: Irving Louis Howard Award and Joshua Feigenbaum Award

Fabricio Vasselai is a Dual PhD candidate, in Political Science and Scientific Computing, at University of Michigan. A MICDE Fellow 2018-2019, he's currently a Researcher at Umich's Center for Political Studies and Center for Complex Systems. In the past, a visitor at Åbo Akademi (Finland) and Fundación Juan March (Spain).

Chagai M. Weiss, University of Wisconsin – Madison

Reducing Prejudice through State Institutions

Chagai M. Weiss is a PhD candidate at the department of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His interests lie in the intersection of ethnic politics, political psychology, and intergroup conflict, with a regional focus on the Middle East. Chagai's research has been published by Governance, and Political Geography.

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