Warren Lowell


Joint-degree in Public Policy and Sociology.


B.A. Cornell University '14, Psychology 
M.P.P. University of Minnesota '19, with concentrations in Social Policy and Advanced Policy Analysis 


Housing; Gentrification; Homelessness; Families and Children; Racial Inequality; Demography; Mixed Methods.


I am interested in how modern developments in housing markets (such as the growth in real estate investing and platform capitalism) and housing policy (primarily, the increasing reliance on private-market solutions for public housing needs) influence racial inequality and the wellbeing of children, families, and communities. In my dissertation, I combine quantitative analysis of large, secondary datasets with qualitative in-depth interviews and participant observation in three distinct, but related, projects. First, I am using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) and Child Development Supplement (CDS) to understand how housing conditions and household shocks lead to high frequency, reactive residential mobility. Second, I am conducting a mixed-methods study on gentrification and the growth of real estate investing in historically-Black neighborhoods in the American South. This study combines data from interviews with real estate investors and low-income homeowners with analysis of real estate tax and deed records to provide evidence on what the rapid growth of investing means for the preservation of history, community, and affordable housing in historically Black neighborhoods in North Carolinian cities. Finally, I am using administrative data from real estate sales linked to public school data to understand how changes in ownership of private, low-income rental housing are associated with housing displacement, school mobility, and educational disadvantage for children.

In addition to this work, I am also involved in an ongoing project on driver’s license revocation and racial inequality in North Carolina and a project on net worth poverty and wellbeing nationally. My work is informed by the years I spent providing direct therapeutic services and case management to families and children in Boston, Massachusetts and Ithaca, New York. I also have several years of experience conducting policy-relevant research at the Tufts University School of Medicine, the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency, the Future Services Institute, and Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare at the University of Minnesota. My work is currently supported by the Russell Sage Foundation, Duke University's Social Science Research Institute (SSRI), and the Office of the Provost. My previous work has been published or is forthcoming in Urban Affairs Review, Housing Policy Debate, Social Service Review, and Socius. 

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