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Class, Economics, and Labor

Andy Clarno Heading link

Associate Professor, Sociology & African American Studies

Andy Clarno’s research focuses on the relationship between racism, capitalism, colonialism, and policing in the early 21st century. He studies the race and class dynamics of neoliberal restructuring, racialized policing in contexts of extreme inequality, and contestations over inequality by urban social movements. Dr. Clarno has three substantive areas of expertise: the political economy of contemporary Palestine/Israel, the dynamics of race and class in post-apartheid South Africa, and emergent strategies of policing in Chicago.

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Christina R. Welter Heading link

Clinical Assistant Professor, Health Policy and Administration

Dr. Welter has 20 years of experience working with government, non-profit and academic health-related sectors, helping organizations and their partners make strategic decisions to create collaborative, impactful and sustainable change building on evidence that identifies root causes of complex problems and promotes learning and leadership development. Her current work includes an action research project to increase policy and systems strategies that address precarious work and leading a process to understand how governmental public health agencies increase readiness for policy and systems change.

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Jeni Hebert-Beirne Heading link

Associate Professor, Community Health Sciences

Dr. Hebert-Beirne is a community-based participatory researcher with a strong public health practice and non profit management background. She partners with community residents and representatives of community-based organizations in community driven research to explore social processes related to structural drivers of health inequities. She leads the sole research study of NIOSH-funded UIC’s Center for Healthy Work exploring how work operates as a social determinant of health in North Lawndale and Little Village and identifying community driven solutions. Dr. Hebert-Beirne is a member of the Partnership for Healthy Chicago, which oversees Healthy Chicago 3.0, the community health assessment for the city of Chicago.

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Mahesh Somashekhar Heading link

Assistant Professor, Sociology

Dr. Somashekhar’s research agenda concerns how economic development and social inequality affect one another in U.S. cities. Specifically, he studies the effects of retail change on urban and suburban communities, with a particular focus on immigrant entrepreneurship, gentrification, and gayborhoods. He is currently undertaking a project that shows there is no monolithic definition of the term “gentrifier.” The consequences of gentrification vary depending on the race, class, and family status of gentrifiers.

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Philip Ashton Heading link

Associate Professor, Urban Planning and Policy

Dr. Ashton’s research focuses on banking and cities, including studies of the rise of the subprime mortgage market and its focus on African-American and Latinx borrowers. He is currently working on a book on public and private litigation against large banks over their role in the foreclosure crisis in minority neighborhoods.

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Rachel Weber Heading link

Professor and Director of Graduate Studies,  Urban Planning and Policy

Broadly speaking, Rachel Weber is interested in the relationship between financial markets and the built environment. She is currently conducting research on the incidence and effectiveness of property tax incentives, the impact of the municipal bond market on patterns of (dis)investment (including school closures) in cities, and the racialization of property values. Dr. Weber is writing a book on speculation and forecasting, particularly how professionals try to predict the next real estate boom and bust.

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Stacey Sutton Heading link

Assistant Professor, Urban Planning and Policy

Dr. Sutton’s research explores “Punitive Cities” and “Enabling Cities.” Through punitive cities research, she examines racially and spatially disparate outcomes associated with planning and policy decisions such as automated traffic tickets, enforcement of land-use rules for small businesses, and gentrification. Dr. Sutton’s “Enabling Cities” research explores the solidarity economy, worker cooperatives, liberated zones, and equitable development.

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Susan Perkins Heading link

Associate Professor, Department of Managerial Studies

Dr. Perkins researches leadership, diversity, and institutional change. Her research has found that female national leaders (presidents/prime ministers) in highly racially diverse nations have a positive effect on the economic development of those countries relative to their male counterparts. Another study analyzes the impact of an SEC rule making it mandatory for publicly listed US firms to disclose their corporate board hiring practices to examine the implications of state-level regulations mandating gender and racial inclusion on corporate boards.

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Xóchitl Bada Heading link

Associate Professor, Latin American and Latino Studies Program

Dr. Bada is the author of Mexican Hometown Associations in Chicagoacán: From Local to Transnational Civic Engagement (Rutgers University Press). Her research interests include migrant access to political and social rights, migrant organizing strategies, violence and displacement, and transnational labor advocacy mobilization. She is coeditor of Accountability across Borders: Migrant Rights in North America (The University of Texas Press) and is currently a Fellow at the Berlin Institute for Advanced Study.

Faculty Profile