MDRC Welcomes Linsey Edwards as a Doctoral Fellow for Fall 2017


MDRC is pleased to welcome Linsey Edwards, a PhD candidate in Sociology and Social Policy at Princeton University, as a doctoral fellow for the Fall of 2017. The fellowship is supported by the Judith Gueron Fund Minority Scholars program, which seeks to engage and encourage individuals from groups that are traditionally underrepresented in the social policy research community.Gueron fellows receive a stipend and the support of MDRC’s staff in completing their dissertations, and they participate in the intellectual life of MDRC by attending seminars and project meetings.

Edwards’s research examines processes that contribute to the persistence of social inequality and stratification, with a specific focus on unequal outcomes for racial minorities and low-income individuals/families. Her dissertation considers the ways in which poverty and disadvantages at the neighborhood level take up people’s time. As she writes:

It is common to assume that the time investments of impoverished individuals are a reflection of poor choices, or even cultural deficiencies. However, an emerging body of research suggests that the stress of having few material resources significantly affects decision-making. Yet, we still know comparatively little about the importance of social context. My research begins to fill this gap by systematically demonstrating that residence in concentrated poverty neighborhoods additionally and independently contributes to time-based decisions. Ethnographic research for this project reveals the myriad of ways why neighborhood context is important: the communities that actors are embedded in help to define when and how long things occur, the value of persistence, and how to think about the future.