Joe earned his PhD in Sociology from the University of Notre Dame in 2014. After Notre Dame he completed a three-year Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at Nuffield College, Oxford. Joe is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology & Anthropology at University of Missouri, Kansas City.
A key finding from his research is that inequality during childhood is primarily driven by non-school environments (i.e. families/homes). Using a seasonal research design, Joe and colleagues found social class disparities in academic achievement accumulate during periods when school is not in session: the pre-school years and summer breaks. In further projects Joe sought to understand what about families drives this inequality. He investigated the ways parents invest in and cultivate their children’s development and how this process is shaped by family structure (small vs large families). Extending this focus on families, his most recent line of research asks whether greater income inequality is associated larger gaps in achievement between high- and low- income children.