Lincoln Quillian

Professor of Sociology | Chair of IPR's Program on Urban Policy and Community Development


Social demographer Lincoln Quillian is interested in social stratification, race and ethnicity, urban sociology, and quantitative research methods. Most of his research has focused on how social structure and group demography influence inequality and intergroup attitudes, with special emphasis on race and ethnicity. Along these lines, he has studied how the relative size of racial minority groups influences racial attitudes. He has investigated the patterns of migration that underlie segregation on the basis of race and income in American cities.

Recently, he has published on the correspondence between audit measures of discrimination and survey measures of prejudice (with Devah Pager of Princeton University), racial segregation in adolescent friendship networks, and the influence of racial stereotypes on perceptions of neighborhood crime levels. These projects have appeared as publications in a number of journals in sociology and demography. He has been awarded a fellowship at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University.

Current Research

Racial Segregation and Poverty Concentration. In an influential article, Douglas Massey of Princeton University develops a simple population simulation that illustrates how the combination of racial segregation and high non-white poverty rates concentrate neighborhood poverty in minority communities. On this basis, Massey predicted that nonwhite poverty rates and racial segregation should interact in statistical models of nonwhite neighborhood poverty contact. Yet empirical studies have generally not found the predicted interaction in data. Quillian’s project develops a decomposition model of segregation and poverty concentration to understand why, in some ways, empirical results contradict Massey’s population model.

Schools, Housing Policy, and Residential Segregation. In this study, Quillian examines how government policies affect residential segregation on the basis of race and income. The project includes an analysis of the change in population composition as jurisdictional boundaries are crossed to estimate the effect of school characteristics on neighborhood economic and racial composition. A second analysis uses simulation models of geographic relocation to estimate effects of public housing and assisted housing programs on poverty concentration and economic segregation.

Selected Publications

Quillian, L. Segregation and poverty concentration: The role of three segregations. American Sociological Review 77(3): 354–79.

Quillian, L., and R. Redd. 2009. The friendship networks of multiracial adolescents. Social Science Research 38(2): 279–95.

Tolsma, J., N. De Graaf, and L. Quillian. 2009. Does intergenerational social mobility affect antagonistic attitudes towards ethnic minorities? British Journal of Sociology 60(2): 257–77.

Quillian, L., and R. Redd. 2008. Can social capital explain persistent racial poverty gaps? In The Colors of Poverty, ed. A. Chih Lin and D. R. Harris, 170–97. New York: Russell Sage.

Quillian, L. 2006. New approaches to understanding racial prejudice and discrimination. Annual Review of Sociology 32: 299–328.

Pager, D., and L. Quillian. 2005. Walking the talk? What employers say versus what they do. American Sociological Review 70(3): 355–380.

Quillian, L. 2003. How long are exposures to poor neighborhoods? The long-term dynamics of entry and exit from poor neighborhoods. Population Research and Policy Review 22(3): 221–49.

Quillian, L., and M. Campbell. 2003. Beyond black and white: The present and future of multiracial friendship segregation. American Sociological Review 68(4): 540–66.

Quillian, L. 2003. The decline of male employment in low-income black neighborhoods, 1950–1990. Social Science Research 32(2): 220–50.

Quillian, L., and D. Pager. 2001. Black neighbors, higher crime? The role of racial stereotypes in evaluations of neighborhood crime. American Journal of Sociology 107(3): 717–67.

Quillian, L. 1999. Migration patterns and the growth of high-poverty neighborhoods, 1970–1990. American Journal of Sociology 105(1): 1–37.