Director, Institute on Assets and Social Policy
Pokross Professor of  Law and Social Policy
The Heller School for Social Policy and Management
Brandeis University
Ph.D., Washington University, St. Louis

Thomas Shapiro directs the Institute on Assets and Social Policy and is the Pokross Professor of Law and Social Policy at The Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University .

Professor Shapiro’s primary interest is in racial inequality, poverty, and public policy.  He is a leader in the asset development field with a particular focus on closing the racial wealth gap. The Hidden Cost of Being African American: How Wealth Perpetuates Inequality, published by Oxford University Press, 2004 (soft cover, 2005) was widely reviewed, including by the Washington Post, Boston Globe, and others. The book was named one of the Notable Books of 2004 by The St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

With Dr. Melvin Oliver, he wrote the award-winning Black Wealth/White Wealth. Black Wealth/White Wealth, which received the 1997 Distinguished Scholarly Publication Award from the American Sociological Association This book also won the 1995 C. Wright Mills Award from the Society for the Study of Social Problems; and the Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Human Rights in North America named it an Outstanding Book of 1996. A Tenth Anniversary Edition of Black Wealth/White Wealth, with two new chapters that examine the most important changes in racial inequality and developments in asset policy in the past decade was published in 2006.

Recent policy pieces are included for Ending Poverty in America, edited by John Edwards and The American Prospect.

His media appearances include Tony Brown’s Journal, The Tavis Smiley Show, Talk of the Nation, CNN, and On Point. His work has been reviewed or discussed in The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, USA Today, The American Prospect, The Chicago Sun-Times, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, CommonWealth Magazine, Newsweek, The Village Voice, and others.

Shapiro presents lectures and seminars throughout the United States to general, professional, policy, community, foundation, and university audiences.  He teaches seminars in Assets and Social Policy; The Sociological Inquiry of Inequality; and Qualitative Research Methods.

Read here Prof. Shapiro’s piece “Wealth of a Nation: A Reassessment of Asset Inequality in America Shows at Least One Third of Households Are Asset-Poor”.

Read here Prof. Shapiro’s article “Race and Wealth”.

Read here Prof. Shapiro’s artcile “Race, Homeownership and Wealth”.

Please, click here to read Professor Shapiro’s C.V.

Read here Prof. Shapiro’s Bellagio Abstract.



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