January 23

Sean Reardon, Graduate School of Education, Stanford University

Time and Location: 10:00-11:20AM, CERAS 123 and via Zoom

Sean Reardon is the endowed Professor of Poverty and Inequality in Education and is Professor (by courtesy) of Sociology at Stanford University. His research focuses on the causes, patterns, trends, and consequences of social and educational inequality, the effects of educational policy on educational and social inequality, and in applied statistical methods for educational research. Reardon is the developer of the Stanford Education Data Archive (SEDA). Based on 300 million standardized test scores, SEDA provides measures of educational opportunity, average test score performance, academic achievement gaps, and other information for every public school district in the US. Professor Reardon received his doctorate in education in 1997 from Harvard University. He is a member of the National Academy of Education and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is also a recipient of the William T. Grant Foundation Scholar Award, the National Academy of Education Postdoctoral Fellowship, and an Andrew Carnegie Fellow.

Matheny, Kaylee.T., Melissa E. Thompson, Carrie Townley-Flores, C., and Sean F. Reardon. 2022. “Uneven Progress: Recent Trends in Academic Performance Among U.S. School Districts.” CEPA Working Paper No.22-02. Retrieved from Stanford Center for Education Policy Analysis: http://cepa.stanford.edu/wp22-02.

Reardon, Sean F., Ericka S. Weathers, Erin M. Fahle, Heewon Jang, and Demetra Kalogrides. 2022. “Is Separate Still Unequal? New Evidence on School Segregation and Racial Academic Achievement Gaps.” CEPA Working Paper No.19-06. Retrieved from Stanford Center for Education Policy Analysis: http://cepa.stanford.edu/wp19-06.

Leung-Gagne, Josh and Sean F. Reardon. 2022. “It is Surprisingly Difficult to Measure Income Segregation.” CEPA Working Paper No. 22-01. Retrieved from Stanford Center for Education Policy Analysis: https://cepa.stanford.edu/wp22-01.

Reardon, Sean F. 2021. “The Economic Achievement Gap in the US, 1960-2020: Reconciling Recent Empirical Findings.” CEPA Working Paper No. 21.09. Retrieved from Stanford Center for Education Policy Analysis: https://cepa.stanford.edu/wp21-09.

January 30

Mitchell Stevens, Graduate School of Education, Stanford University

Time and Location: 10:00-11:20AM, CERAS 123 and via Zoom

Mitchell L. Stevens is Professor of Education and (by courtesy) Sociology at Stanford University. He is  an organizational sociologist with longstanding interests in educational sequences, lifelong learning, alternative educational forms, and the formal organization of knowledge. With John Mitchell, he co-directs the Stanford Pathways Lab. The author of award-winning studies of home education and selective college admissions, his most recent books are Remaking College: The Changing Ecology of Higher Education and Seeing the World: How US Universities Make Knowledge in a Global Era. With Martin Kurzweil, he co-convened the project Responsible Use of Student Data in Higher Education. He has written scholarly articles for a variety of academic journals and editorial for the Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Education, The New York Times, and other venues.

Recent Publications:

Harrison, Monique H., Philip A. Hernandez, and Mitchell L. Stevens. 2022. “Should I Start at MATH 101? Content Repetition as an Academic Strategy in Elective Curriculums.” Sociology of Education 95(2):133–52. doi: 10.1177/00380407221076490.

Alvero, A. J., Sonia, Giebel., Ben Gebre-Medhin, Anthony Lising Antonio, Mitchell L., Stevens, and Ben W. Domingue. 2021. “Essay content and style are strongly related to household income and SAT scores: Evidence from 60,000 undergraduate applications.” Science Advances, 7(42): eabi9031. doi: 10.1126/sciadv.abi9031.

Kindel, Alexander T., and Mitchell L. Stevens. 2021. “What Is Educational Entrepreneurship? Strategic Action, Temporality, and the Expansion of US Higher Education.” Theory and Society 50(4):577–605. doi: 10.1007/s11186-021-09443-3.

February 6

Robb Willer, Department of Sociology, Stanford University

Time and Location: 10:00-11:20AM, CERAS 123 and via Zoom

Robb Willer is a Professor in the Departments of Sociology, Psychology (by courtesy), and the Graduate School of Business (by courtesy) at Stanford University. He is the Director of the Polarization and Social Change Lab and the Co-Director of the Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society. Professor Willer’s teaching and research focus on social forces that bring people together (e.g., morality, altruism), forces that divide them (e.g., fear, prejudice), and domains of social life that feature the complex interplay of the two (e.g., hierarchies, politics). The primary area of his research looks at the social and psychological forces shaping Americans’ political attitudes. He has a particular interest in techniques for overcoming polarization to build political consensus. He studies how political psychology findings can be applied to construct persuasive political messages. His research has appeared primarily in general science, sociology, psychology, and organizations journals, including the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Nature, Human Behaviour, American Sociological Review, American Journal of Sociology, Annual Review of Sociology, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Psychological Science, Administrative Science Quarterly, and Proceedings of the Royal Society of London: Biological Sciences.

Recent Publications:

Corbett, Christianne*, Jan Voelkel*, Marianne Cooper, and Robb Willer. 2022. “Pragmatic Bias Impedes Women’s Access to Political Leadership.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 119(6) (*equal authorship)

Sophia L. Pink, James Chu, James Druckman, David G. Rand, and Robb Willer. 2021. "Elite Party Cues Increase Vaccination Intentions among Republicans."  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Yuan Chang Leong, Janice Chen, Robb Willer, Jamil Zaki. 2020. "Conservative and liberal attitudes drive polarized neural responses to political content." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Matthew Feinberg, Robb Willer, and Chloe Kovacheff. 2020. "The Activist's Dilemma: Extreme Protest Tactics Reduce Popular Support for Social Movements." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

February 13

Julia Lerch, Department of Sociology, University of California, Irvine

Time and Location: 10:00-11:20AM, CERAS 123 and via Zoom

Julia Lerch is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Irvine. Her work examines educational change in a global context. She is particularly interested in understanding large-scale (and often global) shifts in the kinds of social goals that schools and universities are expected to advance. For example, a recent project has focused on the growing institutionalization of education as a core pillar of international responses to humanitarian emergencies, such as refugee crises. She explored how this shift not only broadened the boundaries of humanitarian aid – historically focused on survival – but also expanded the goals of education, which now span from long-term development to emergency relief. In a second line of research, she has  studied shifting portrayals of society in educational curricula worldwide, using data coded from school textbooks on topics such as nationalism, diversity, and human rights, as well as internationalized study programs at universities. In addition to these lines of work, she is currently involved in a research effort to understand ongoing contestations over the institutions promoted by the post-World War II liberal international order, with particular focus on universities. To support her research in education, Julia has been awarded a National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship.

Recent Publications:

Evan Schofer, Julia C. Lerch, and John W. Meyer. 2022. “Illiberal Reactions to Higher Education in the 21st Century.” Minerva. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11024-022-09472-x.

Julia C. Lerch, Patricia Bromley, and John W. Meyer. 2022. “Global Neoliberalism as a Cultural Order and its Expansive Educational Effects.” International Journal of Sociology. 52(2): 97- 127.

Julia C. Lerch, Evan Schofer, David John Frank, Wesley Longhofer, Francisco O. Ramirez, Christine Min Wotipka, and Kristopher Velasco. 2022. “Women’s participation and challenges to the liberal script: A global perspective.” International Sociology 37(3): 305-329.

Mike Zapp and Julia C. Lerch. 2020. “Imagining the World – Conceptions and Determinants of Internationalization in Higher Education Curricula Worldwide.” Sociology of Education. 93(4): 372-392.

February 27

Ken Shotts, Graduate School of Business, Stanford University

Time and Location: 10:00-11:20AM, CERAS 123 and via Zoom

Ken Shotts is the David S. and Ann M. Barlow Professor of Political Economy at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Professor Shotts uses game theory to analyze how elections and political institutions influence government policy choices. He has published papers on electoral accountability, presidential leadership, racialw redistricting, term limits, political risk, policy entrepreneurship, and media & propaganda in fragile democracies. Ken teaches core MBA and MSx classes on Leading with Values and has a forthcoming book (with Neil Malhotra) based on this class: "Leading with Values: Strategies for Making Ethical Decisions in Business and Life." He also teaches in several Executive Education programs, including the Stanford Executive Program and the Stanford LEAD online program.  In addition to his time at Stanford, he has taught at Northwestern and the University of Michigan and has been a visiting scholar at the Hoover Institution, Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, and the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences.

Recent publications:

Li, Anqui, Davin Raiha and Ken Shotts. Forthcoming. “Propaganda, Alternative Media, and Accountability in Fragile Democracies.” The Journal of Politics.

Malhotra, Neil and Ken Shotts. 2022. Leading with Values. Cambridge University Press.

Shotts, Ken and Alexander V. Hirsch. 2018. “Policy Development Monopolies: Adverse Consequences and Institutional Responses.” Journal of Politics 80: 1339-1354.

Shotts, Ken. 2016. “Political Risk as a Hold-up Problem: Implications for Integrated Strategy.” Advances in Strategic Management 34: 57-85.

March 6

Francisco Ramirez, Graduate School of Education, Stanford University

Time and Location: 10:00-11:20AM, CERAS 123 and via Zoom

Francisco O. Ramirez is Vida Jacks Professor of Education in the Graduate School of Education and (by courtesy) of Sociology at Stanford University. He conducts cross-national studies on the role of education in the formation of world society and the influence of world society on educational developments. These studies include topics such as changes in the status of women in society, the role of education and science in economic development, the interrelationships among education, citizenship, and human rights, and the impact of globalization on universities.  Current interests focus on challenges to the authority of education and women’s rights. Professor Ramirez has been  a Fellow at the Center for the Advanced Studies of the Behavioral Sciences (2006-07) and at the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Studies (2017).  He was elected into the Sociological Research Association in 2016, chosen as an Honorary Fellow in the Comparative and International Education Society in 2018, and is a Senior Fellow at the Free University of Berlin, Cluster of Excellence Contestations of the Liberal Script. 

Recent publications:

Lerch, Julia C., Evan Schofer, David John Frank, Wesley Longhofer, Francisco O. Ramirez, Christine Min Wotipka, and Kristopher Velasco. 2021. “Women’s Participation and Challenges to the Liberal Script: A Global Perspective.” International Sociology 37(3):305–29. doi: 10.1177/02685809211060911.

Wotipka, Christine Min, Joseph Svec, Lisa Yiu, and Francisco O. Ramirez. 2021. “The Status and Agency of Children in School Textbooks, 1970–2012: A Cross-National Analysis.” Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education 1–18. doi: 10.1080/03057925.2021.1976621.

Zapp, Mike, Jens Jungblut, and Francisco O. Ramirez. 2021. “Legitimacy, Stratification, and Internationalization in Global Higher Education: The Case of the International Association of Universities.” Tertiary Education and Management 27(1):1–15. doi: 10.1007/s11233-020-09062-0.