Roland Neil

Roland Neil

Roland Neil
(Sociology, November 2021)
Thesis Title: The Ecological Sources of Racial Inequities in Proactive Policing
Committee: Robert J. Sampson (Chair), Christopher Winship, Joscha Legewie, and Anthony Braga
Initial Placement: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Penn Injury Science Center, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania


I am a postdoctoral fellow at the Penn Injury Science Center, part of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. I am a scholar of crime and criminal justice, urban sociology, the life course, and racial and ethnic stratification.

My current research encompasses three strands. One is focused on explaining patterns of police behavior, including how racial disparities in policing are produced. I especially seek to advance our understanding of how policing is shaped by the organizational and neighborhood contexts in which it occurs. The second strand of my research develops novel statistical tests of discrimination in policing, so that we may more accurately detect racially biased patterns and practices. The third strand seeks to better explain changes in criminal behavior as people age and at the societal level over time by studying the degree and nature of cohort differences in life-course offending patterns.

I hold a Ph.D. in sociology from Harvard University. Prior to that, I obtained my B.A. and M.A. from McGill University.

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