My research on housing and the politics of homeownership has been published in Social Forces, City & Community and Contexts. Drawing on contemporary survey data from the Social Capital Community Survey and the Current Population Survey, these papers investigate the way homeownership shapes patterns of neighborliness, social trust and community engagement.
In my new book, No Place Like Home: Wealth, Community & the Politics of Homeownership (Oxford University Press, 2016), I argue that the importance of building wealth through housing has reshaped the way homeowners engage in their communities. Rather than emerging as civic-minded stewards of neighborhood life, as our rhetoric often suggests, I show that homeowners engage in their communities as self-interested actors concerned to protect the value of their homes. These findings challenge long-standing ideas about the importance of homeownership for strengthening communities and building better citizens.
In a new research project on the politics of low-income housing, I am examining the ways that local public housing authorities prioritize households and make decisions about the distribution of housing assistance. This research was started with a New Scholars Grant from the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality.