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Bruce Western

Professor of Sociology and co-director of the Justice Lab, Columbia University

New York, NY

Bruce Western is a Professor of Sociology and Guggenheim Professor of Criminal Justice Policy, Director of the Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy, and Faculty Chair of the Program in Criminal Justice at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He received his BA from the University of Queensland, Australia, and his PhD in Sociology from the University of California, Los Angeles. Western’s research examines trends in American economic inequality and the growth of the US penal population. These topics are joined by an interest in the shifting landscape of American poverty over the last 40 years. As a quantitative social scientist, Western has also studied the application of Bayesian statistics and methods for the analysis of economic inequality. He is currently vice-chair of a committee studying the causes and consequences of high incarceration rates for the National Academies of Sciences and will lead an Executive Session at the Kennedy School on the future of correctional policy.