Natasha Warikoo is Professor of Sociology at Tufts University. A former Guggenheim Fellow, Warikoo is an expert on racial and ethnic inequality in education. Her forthcoming book, Race at the Top: Asian Americans and Whites in Pursuit of the American Dream in Suburban Schools (University of Chicago Press, April 2022) illuminates tensions related to achievement in a suburban, high-income town with a large and growing Asian American population. An article based on the book’s research was published in American Journal of Sociology. Titled “Addressing Emotional Health while Protecting Status: Asian American and White Parents in Suburban America,” the article won two awards from the American Sociological Association: the Sociology of Education James Coleman Award, and the Sociology of Emotions Outstanding Recent Contribution Award.
Warikoo’s most recently published book, The Diversity Bargain: And Other Dilemmas of Race, Admissions, and Meritocracy at Elite Universities (University of Chicago Press, 2016), shows how undergraduates attending Ivy League universities and Oxford University conceptualize race and meritocracy. The book emphasizes the contradictions, moral conundrums, and tensions on campus related to affirmative action and diversity, and how these vary across racial and national lines. The book won multiple awards, including Honorable Mention for the Oliver Cromwell Cox Best Book Award from the American Sociological Association’s section on Racial and Ethnic Minorities, Honorable Mention for the Eduardo Bonilla-Silva Book Award from the Society for the Study of Social Problems Division on Racial and Ethnic Minorities, and from the American Educational Studies Association.
Natasha’s first book, Balancing Acts: Youth Culture in the Global City (University of California Press, 2011), analyzes youth culture among children of immigrants attending diverse, low-performing high schools in New York City and London. Balancing Acts won the Thomas and Znaniecki Best Book Award from the American Sociological Association’s International Migration Section. Both of these projects involve extensive ethnographic research in the United States and Britain. In 2017-2018 Warikoo was a Guggenheim Fellow, studying racial change in suburban America. Her latest book, Rules of the Game: Asian Americans, Whites, and the Quest for Excellence in Suburban America, will be published by University of Chicago Press in 2022.
Natasha’s research has also been published in scholarly journals (American Journal of Sociology; American Journal of Education; British Education Research Journal; Educational Researcher; Poetics; Race, Ethnicity and Education; Ethnic and Racial Studies; Ethnicities; Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies; Poetics; Review of Educational Research; Social Sciences; Sociological Forum, and Studies in Higher Education), edited books, and newspapers (The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, and more), and she has won grants and awards from American Sociological Association, the British Academy, Guggenheim Foundation, National Science Foundation, Nuffield Foundation, and Russell Sage Foundation.
In addition to her academic work, Natasha is co-chair of the Scholars Strategy Network Boston Chapter, which aims to connect scholars, policymakers, civic leaders, and journalists in the Boston area. She writes and speaks frequently for public audiences (see here for her public engagement).
Natasha was previously Associate Professor of Education at Harvard University. Prior to her academic career she was a teacher in New York City’s public schools, and also spent time working at the US Department of Education. Natasha completed her PhD in sociology from Harvard University, and BSc and BA in mathematics and philosophy at Brown University. She lives in Cambridge with her husband Ramesh Kumar and their three children.
Contact Natasha at: natasha.warikoo-at-tufts.edu .